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Did all these things happen in France before and we just didn’t hear about them? I mean wrong size trains and escalators? Building a monumental building - La Grande Arche de la Défense and seemingly speccing the wrong materials? So much so that it will require €200m worth of renovations only 25 years after construction?

And the gendarmes sound more and more like some dodgy part of the Sweeney.  Oh yes, we haven’t found the 53kgs of cocaine but while looking for it (in an officers’ lock up) we found 900kgs of cannabis resin.

Yes I know Britain’s had its wobbly bridge and what else?

If the Scots vote to stay in the UK can they please then just get on with it and not have a referendum every year or two until they get an answer they want?

Also, could the US states that are having trouble executing people (there have been a few fast-acting lethal injections that haven’t been very successful of late) just outsource the job to Dignitas, the nice Swiss company specialising in euthanasia?

And as the Russians went to all that trouble of painting lots of trucks white perhaps they may be allowed to disperse the contents under Red Cross supervision to those in need.  One can only hope that they have non-perishable food and medicines rather than military hardware.

You can save money not having to have a longhaul hol to get Dengue fever, you can now pop over to the Var


And finally could the Brits in Brugairolles  play nicely -  you will get us a bad name! Read on






Thousands of regular readers make the Flyer the place to be seen



Lost in France


After my little rant about cycle repair shops in the last flyer I realise I only have myself to blame.

Every few days I cycle the same route, up the hill to the hunters’ hut and back down again.  The journey up is quite hard and relentless.  I usually stop at least four times and even then I sometimes miss out the final steep section which terminates at the cross-roads and the hunters’ cabin.  However, the journey back, all downhill of course, is delightful and I manage to have got my breath back just in time to go uphill back to my house.

Cyclists pass me on both journeys and say hello as they continue at speed on their way.  This morning was different.  A cyclist joined me and instead of continuing on he started chatting to me and after a while he was gently encouraging me up the hill and giving me the distances of how far we’d travelled and how far we had yet to go.  I really appreciated his company and I could see what fun it must be to be part of those teams of cyclists I was mildly critical off last time.  I managed the whole journey without a stop and he could quite easily have taken off at any point, up the road, disappearing out of sight in the blink of an eye.  But he didn’t.  What a lovely generous man.

I wonder if there are any teams of non-super fit people who like to cycle together?


But guess what, in the joy of companionship and the thrill of have having ridden all the way without a break, I forgot to ask him where he got his bike repaired!  Doh!





 JAZZ 29.08.2014 AUDE FLYER


 lenetwork  bmw






A couple of things have come out of the UK government’s office recently. Both are important, but for some expatriates, one of these is going to have a bigger impact than the other.


The first was the result of the consultation on the UK pension reform, which was published in July (and we can now expect a Pensions Bill in the Autumn). The outcome is that not much has changed from what had already been proposed, which you can read about in my previous article at


However, a couple of things have been fine-tuned. For example, the age from which you will be able to take your total pension pot as cash on the grounds of triviality will be possible from age 55, rather than the current age 60. Also for those who still prefer the security of a lifetime annuity, the rules will be changed to allow a longer guarantee period than 10 years but of course, this will reduce the amount of the annuity at start.


One important point that has been clarified concerns pension transfers from Final Salary Schemes to Defined Contribution Schemes (DCS). We now know these will still be allowed, but only from those schemes that are funded. Therefore, members of unfunded public sector defined benefit schemes will not be allowed to transfer their benefits to a DCS. This may not appear to be an issue - after all who would want to transfer their pension benefits out of such schemes? In effect, the government – or in reality, the UK taxpayer – underwrites the cost of these pension schemes.


Well this brings me to the second ‘thing’ …….


……. non-residents could lose their UK tax-free allowance on UK taxable income.


For those of you who have not already picked up this news, this is something that could come into effect in April 2015. A consultation has been launched by the government with a deadline of 9th October for interested parties to respond.


For French residents, this concerns those who are receiving public sector pensions, UK property rental income and/or UK earnings. If it comes into effect, the result will be that for a basic rate UK tax payer, unless your average tax rate in France is at least 20%, then your combined UK and French tax bill will be higher. This is because the method that is used to give relief from double taxation in France, limits the amount of that relief to the amount of French tax attributable to such income. Based on the 2014 rates, for a couple in France this would mean that they have to have combined taxable income of at least €112,000 per annum or for a single person, at least €57,000. If you are below this level, then you would be affected.


My initial reaction to the above was that those with public sector pensions are being treated unfairly. They cannot transfer their pension benefits out of the current scheme and so are forced to be subject to UK tax with the possibility of paying up to £2,000 a year more (based on UK 2014-15 rates), but they are unlikely to get the full relief from France. However, thankfully, the UK government has recognised that as the public sector pensions are, in theory, only taxable in the UK, then it is quite likely that entitlement to the personal allowance will be maintained.


Sadly, not so for property rental income (or earnings), as the UK government considers that people will usually be also liable to tax in their country of residence. However, the method of the calculation used to give relief from double taxation is identical for all these three categories of income, which is based on taking in to account the gross amount of income (i.e. before UK tax deduction). Had the previous method of calculating the relief still been in operation, there would not be any potential issue, since the calculation used the amount of income after deduction of UK income tax.


The other change that is taking place in the UK that affects non-residents who own property is the introduction of capital gains tax for properties sold after April 2015. When combined with the potential increase in UK income tax on any property rental income, this makes holding property for investment purposes a lot less interesting.


Are you affected by these changes? If so, please feel free to contact me if you wish to have a confidential discussion to see if your situation can be improved.


Now is also a good time to mention that we are taking bookings for our Autumn client seminars, which will be taking place across France – “Le Tour de Finance - Bringing Experts to Expats”. Our industry experts will be presenting updates and outlooks on a broad range of subjects, including:


Ø  Financial Markets

Ø  Assurance Vie

Ø  Pensions/QROPS

Ø  Structured Investments

Ø  French Tax issues

Ø  Currency Exchange


The date for the local seminar is Friday, 10th October 2014 at the Domaine Gayda, 11300 Brugairolles. This is always a very popular event and so early booking is recommended.


But if you are reading this further afield, you may be interested in attending one of our other events, for example, St Endréol in the Var on 8th October and full details of all venues can be found on our website at


Places for our seminars are limited and must be reserved, in advance. So if you would like to attend one of the events or you would anyway like to have a confidential discussion about any aspect of financial planning, please contact me either by e-mail at or by telephone on  04 68 20 30 17.


The above outline is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute advice or a recommendation from The Spectrum IFA Group to take any particular action on the subject of investment of financial assets or on the mitigation of taxes.


The Spectrum IFA Group advisers do not charge any fees directly to clients for their time or for advice given, as can be seen from our Client Charter at



Daphne Foulkes

SIRET 522 658 194 00017

Numéro d’immatriculation ORIAS 10 056 800






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Forum:     Local Website:

 Local Association No : W112000594




Tech Talk



Missing email



 Many millions of email messages go missing every day and in many cases the sender is unaware that the email has not reached its destination. The person receiving the message has absolutely no idea that the message has been sent to them unless by some chance they happen to have had some other communication with the person sending it.


In many cases the missing emails can be tracked down to spam/junk filtering, and in some cases this filtering is done by your email provider without your knowledge. It’s a very good idea to login to the web-based version of your email account (if your account has one) and check the spam/junk folder once in a while. Many of you will be very surprised to find messages from friends and family and other sources that you wanted to receive but which your email company has blocked.


Depending on the email company you are using it may be possible in the settings or preferences to disable this filtering and have it send you all messages, this is my preferred method as you can then install spam/junk filtering software on your own computer. It’s much easier for you to manage your own spam/junk filters and folders than to keep having to login to a web-based system.


For those already using a web-based system such as Gmail directly from the website or Hotmail directly from the website, in this case you do not need spam/junk filtering software on your computer and can quite happily use the email providers own filtering system as you can see your online spam/junk folder all the time.


Another way to help ensure emails reach you is to add the email addresses of your friends or regular senders to your address book, in many cases people find that a friend or family member cannot send email messages and this is usually because the email address is not listed in the address book (sometimes called contacts). You may also have to login to your email provider’s web-based system and add the email addresses there as well, this is especially the case with as they regularly block and addresses.


Never assume that email is instantaneous, while in 99.9% of cases an email message does arrive within a few seconds of being sent it can take up to 72 hours for an email message to pass through the servers and reach its destination.


The email systems that we are currently using is many decades old and is really starting to show its age, it was never designed for the uses we are now making of it. More modern systems usually called instant messaging handle messages in a very different and much more up-to-date way and over the next few years is quite likely that we will see email systems and instant message systems merge together to embrace all the new technology. An example of just how old email is, when you send a photograph by email the photograph is re-rendered by the email system into an extremely large text file (mime format) this text file is then sent to the recipient, where their email system re-renders the image from text back into a photograph. This method is very inefficient,very slow and results in extremely large emails travelling backwards and forwards.


Don’t forget many email systems have a maximum size of email message that can be sent and in most cases 10 MB is the limit, anything larger will simply be rejected. This means if you’re sending two or three photographs by email you may have to send them one at a time, the average photo from a digital camera is around 4/6 MB, this is then doubled through the sending process to 8 MB which is very close to the limit of 10 MB.


Always remember to include a subject with your email this gives the spam/junk filtering at the other end a fighting chance to work out whether your message is spam or not, many corporate email systems will routinely block all messages that do not include a subject.


NEVER forward a group message. i.e. A message that has been sent to lots of people – Unless you take out ALL the other names. It’s very bad form to pass on other peoples email addresses without their permission and in some case you might also be breaking EU data protection regulations. This could lead to you having your email account shut down and maybe even a fine.


If you are sending a group email to lots of people then make sure you use BCC instead of To. This hides the email address from the people you are sending to and keeps you within the law. If you are sending business group emails then you should also include information on how the person can opt out of receiving a more emails from you.


Governments are tightening up data protection legislation and more rigorously applying the law in an effort to stop spam and cut down on fraud.


Lastly make sure your email has a secure password, this is especially important if you use a web based email system like Gmail, Hotmail,, Yahoo etc. Your password should be at least 8 charters long (longer is better), contain numbers and letters and a symbol and if possible not be a recognisable word. Colours, sports teams, children’s names, pets name are not good enough and easily guessed by a hacker. Many people have had their accounts hacked and in many cases they have lost the account forever – be warned a strong password is the best protection.


Many web based email systems are asking users for verification, this usually entails a code being sent to a mobile phone or alternative email address, if you see the verification system do not ignore it and make sure you use your own details when you fill it in. You might not need it now but when it asks you again in 18 month’s time you will need to be able to access the phone or email you provided.


If you need help or have any questions about your computer please give me a call or send me an email for FREE advice. or Telephone 05 61 60 84 23.








 Bridge Problem.


You are in 3NT and they lead a small spade to the Jack on your right. Plan the play.





K 3

A J 10 9 8

9 7 6 5 4


Your hand

A K 10

A 6 5 4

Q 7 5

K Q 2





If you won and immediately took the diamond finesse – a 50/50 shot....well you had a better line. If the diamond finesse loses, a spade return sees you making only eight tricks (the Queen is likely to be on your left). You can combine your chances by spurning the finesse and playing a diamond to the Ace and a club towards your King/Queen. If this is ducked, a return to the diamond suit now gives you nine tricks. If they rise with the Ace of clubs on your right and a spade is played, clubs 3/2 will see you home and, if the King is taken by the Ace on your left, a spade return will give you an extra trick.



Lizzie Godfrey




meteo ciel3














 Le Flyer est disponible dans d'autres langues via le site web,









During August continue to tidy up summer flowering annuals and perennials, cut back the long & whippy summer growths on Wisteria and trim evergreen hedges such as laurel etc  Prunings can be shredded to prodce organic mulch for the garden.  I had an email the other day asking me to clarify what I mean by mulch so here goes.  A mulch is any thick layer of material that is spread over the surface of the soil around your plants.  It helps to conserve moisture by preventing evaporation and keeping the soil surface cooler and, to some extent, helps to prevent weed germination.  Mulches can be inorganic such as gravel and stone chippings or organic such as shredded garden waste, bark or the residue from wine presses.  Many local authorities shred green waste and it is worth asking at your local dechetterie if they make this available to private gardeners. 

A pretty little perennial that flowers all through the summer months is the orange flowered Begonia sutherlandii, this will take sun or half shade and likes some supplementary.  It grows to about 20cm high and dies away in the winter, coming up from bulbils again in the spring.

Regular opening times at La Petite Pépinière are limited to just to one weekend a month but the garden is always open by appointment - just email or phone to organise a time.  We encourage people to visit the garden during the summer to look rather than to buy!   Regular opening times for the next few months will be   12/13/14 September, 10th, 11th & 12th October and 7th, 8th & 9th November.  Remember too that we are always happy to organise guided visits of the garden here for groups.



For any garden queries do get in touch with Gill Pound ( 04 68 78 43 81 or ). La Petite Pépinière de Caunes 21, av de la Montagne Noire (route de Citou) 11160 Caunes-Minervois.

La Petite Pépinière de Caunes
21, av de la Montagne Noire,
11160 Caunes-Minervois
04 68 78 43 81

















The Property Page





 front door 011smallarcher

 Razes circulade village

Period house in a beautiful Razes circulade village.  This renovated but unspoilt house is over 200 years old and has far reaching views of countryside, hills and mountains from almost every room, and a stunning roof terrace.  There are 3 double bedrooms, large lounge, separate dining room and kitchen.  There is also a very large walk-thru cellar.  The house retains many period features including a beautiful oak staircase.  

Price 99,000 euros. .





Former Presbetary with courtyard near town centre



 Village house to renovate with a courtyard of 80m²





Bordebasse du Lac - Cottage available for long term rental

 Detached modern house

for sale in Montréal


Holiday Apartment AiguaBlava,

Costa Brava


Naturist Property 97,500 euro


for 13 editions (6months)
link to your own web page


 readers write



all replies to please



Hi Steve


I am a woman cyclist - not terribly competitive, and I don't wear lycra, but love my little cycle rides in our region.  I live in Castelnaudary, and there is a fantastic repair shop, Maris, in the Cours du Republique. The owner is very helpful, and will do his utmost to carry out repairs or advise.





During my visits to Aude & Ariege I discoverd that if I needed something the best source of information was people I had come to know. I went to a game and internet cafe in Carcassonne (I used to have to get online to catch up on necessary emails even thought I was on vacation) and got to know the family that owned it. I got to know other people through shared interests and found that if they didn't know where I could find _____, then they knew someone who probably knew....

So who in Aude would know....

Here's the website for the national organization and a map so you can click on it and find the clubs in Aude  (by regional)

Each club can be clicked to find out more...


A less personal approach would be to check with their website doesn't say they offer repair services but they are offering a Depot-Vente in October and there is some info about Profitez des conseils des experts de Decathlon...

So you might ask at the store. It's near the carrefour of the A61 and D6161... Hope this helps the Lost in France cyclist back on his bike...


and lastly, a website for cyclists in the Languedoc...


I know people hire bikes in Castelnaudry, so a search for that place brought up this site....but another site (a blog) says 'when the shop was open in Castelnaudry...' so it may be closed now. Still, does give some options. 











Some vide greniers and foires!
Please check before setting off
They also have a sister site where you can giveaway stuff or find stuff others are giving
Its all recycling - you know it makes sense!
If there are two in the same town on the same day, it could be a duplicate on the site or a second event
Black = Aude - Brown = Ariege

Samedi 23 Août 2014

Alaigne vide-greniers, Foire à Tout le long des circulades

Coursan vide grenier

Saverdun vide greniers +brocante


Dimanche 24 Août 2014

Carcassonne Vide grenier brocante

Carcassonne Vide grenier de quartier

Cavanac vide grenier

Coursan vide grenier

Ginestas  Vide grenier de la Chasse

Gruissan vide grenier pour animaux abandonnes

Lacombe vide grenier de Lacombe

Leucate La Franqui Tante Marie vide ses greniers

Limoux Foire a la brocante

Mas-Saintes-Puelles vide grenier association Dance Attitude

Mazuby vide-greniers

Montjardin 1er grand vide grenier de Montjardin

Moussoulens vide grenier

Narbonne-Plage vide greniers et marché aux puces

Ribaute vide grenier

Saint-Ferriol Vide-grenier annuel

Saint-Pierre-la-Mer vide greniers

Sigean vide grenier ecole de rugby USP


Villalier vide grenier de la pêche

Pamiers Marché et puces et à la brocantes


Jeudi 28 Août 2014

les Cabanes de Fleury Vide greniers aux cabanes de fleury 

Samedi 30 Août 2014

Coursan vide grenier

Salvezines  Vide grenier - marche

Ilhat vide grenier et fête de village

La Bastide-de-Sérou vide greniers

Saverdun vide grenier+ brocante


Dimanche 31 Août 2014

Carcassonne Vide grenier brocante

Coursan vide grenier

Gruissan Vide grenier du cos

Hounoux vide greniers et fête au village

Leucate puces nautiques vente de bateaux d'occasion

Leucate-Plage Vide-greniers

Moussoulens vide grenier

Narbonne produits du terroir et vide grenier benefice pour chats errants

Narbonne-Plage vide grenier

Quillan vide grenier de l'association chats libres de Quillan

Saint-Marcel sur Aude Vide-Greniers de la Gym

Saissac Vide grenier du Foyer Rural de Saissac

Treilles Vide grenier de Treilles

Ventenac-en-Minervois Vide grenier

Ilhat vide grenier et fête de village


Pamiers Marché et puces et à la brocantes





 What's On





PHARRELL WILLIAMS 6 Oct Zenith Toulouse

LILY ALLEN 29 Oct Zenith Toulouse

IMELDA MAY 3 Nov Bikini Toulouse

ULI JON ROTH 4 Nov Bikini Toulouse

THE DO 9 Nov Bikini Toulouse





PINK MARTINI 10 Nov Halle aux grains Toulouse

GONG 14 Nov Metronum Toulouse

PETER GABRIEL 16 Nov Zenith Toulouse

SAXON +SKID ROW 26 Nov Bikini Toulouse

ANGUS & JULIA STONE 7 Dec Bikini Toulouse

DISNEY ON ICE 30 Jan 1 Feb Zenith Toulouse

DIRTY DANCING 1/3 May Zenith Toulouse



















The following prices are for one insertion in the Flyer email news letter unless otherwise stated




Give away items


1 image and 25 words, plus contact details

All items for sale inc Motor vehicles, boats, caravans & trailers

25 €

1 image and 25 words, plus contact details in 3 editions




Property for sale - land, houses, businesses

50 €

up to 8 images and 500 words, plus contact details - your own property web page linked to the "Property Page" section of the Flyer for 13 editions

Large Display Advert - Corporate


Finished artwork to be 756 pixels by 200 pixels landscape or 378 pixels by 400 pixels portrait

Standard Display Advert - Corporate


Finished artwork to be 378 pixels by 200 pixels landscape

Large Display Advert - Small Companies and Sole Traders (at my discretion)


Finished artwork to be 756 pixels by 200 pixels landscape or 378 pixels by 400 pixels portrait

Standard Display Advert - Small Companies and Sole Traders (at my discretion)

25 €

Finished artwork to be 378 pixels by 200 pixels landscape

What's on feature advert

35 €

Finished artwork to be 378 pixels by 515 pixels portrait

information about advertising rates and specifications.
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Send details to of your advert to Steve Hedges.
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