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It’s happened then, a Royal boy, and the odds are it will be George, James or Alexander - those are the current bookies favourite.  I thought Spencer might be in there somewhere and it is at 22 to 1.  Then just below it is Francis at 28 to 1, so there is indeed some possibility the third in line to the throne could be Frank Spencer, who would have the option of saying “ooooo betty” to his great grandmother.  Do the bookies only pay out on the name being the first name? Or can you go each way on the bets to get one of the later names?


ok ok so he's George V11, will try to be quicker next time


Ok that’s quite enough on matters Royal and rolling news have once again taken it all too far.  One would imagine Nelson Mandela was all better and at home knocking the heads of the warring Ewing Mandela clan together and getting them to stop moving dead relatives around.

The war in Syria must be over too and as for Trayvon well he won’t get a look in for a while.


Chris Froome, didn’t he do well?  Born in Kenya,  grew up in South Africa, and through all of that had a British passport so that’s got to count.


So far nothing has emerged to disprove my theory that Ed Snowden is bobbing along on the high seas en route from Hong Kong to Ecuador, or did I see a picture of him snapped at the transit hotel at Moscow airport?


In the last Flyer I was complaining about the weather and since then it’s turned somewhat scorchio. Oh and you may have called the owner of some bedside cabinets and a TV who advertised in the last FLyer, i put the telephone number in wrongly and they were still all sold within 24 hours.


Mr Sarkozy is having a whip round on Facebook to rebuild the funds in the UMP’S bank account after 11m euros were confiscated after electoral funding irregularities.  Is that why the wife has a new advertising deal with Bulgari and is off on tour for some months from November?









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Reduction in the Livret A Rate?

It is widely expected that the Livret A rate of interest will be reduced from next month.

The rate is actually set by the government and there is a defined formula for calculating this, which takes into account both average short-term interest rates and the rate of inflation in France. Therefore, it is the same interest rate for all banks and so it makes no difference where you hold your account.

Currently, the rate is 1.75% per annum and the anticipation is that this will go down to 1.25% - or if the official formula is strictly applied - even as low as 1%. Perhaps the government will be kind and settle for the 0.5% cut in the rate, rather than 0.75%.

We have been living with low interest rates for a long time, but because of the way that the formula works, the rate of inflation has kept the Livret A rate higher. The big surprise now is how much inflation has fallen in France, since the Livret A rate was last revised.

According to INSEE (the body responsible for calculating inflation), the ‘official’ rate of inflation (excluding tobacco) was 0.9% for the year to the end of June. Now I don’t know about anyone reading this, but my ‘personal’ rate of inflation is a lot more than 0.9%. But perhaps I don’t buy too many of the goods that someone else decides goes into ‘the basket’ to measure inflation.

For example, my car insurance has gone up by 7.3% this year and our house insurance has gone up by 17.4%, even though we have not had any claims. Our blanquet budget has also increased - not because we drinking more - but because the price of our favourite bottle has gone up from €4.60 to €5.20, i.e. 13%. I could go on and on and the result would be the same because I am struggling to think of what has gone down in price, except for energy costs. We did a rough budget check recently and found that we were on target for spending about 20% more in 2013, compared to 2012. I guess that we have to drink less blanquet!

Despite the reduction in the interest rate, the French tax-free Livret A account will continue to be ideal for keeping cash that you need for the purpose of an emergency fund. It will not cause you any tax problems and some interest is better than nothing at all. But I question whether anyone really needs close to €30,000 per person in the household for an emergency fund?

Of course, if you have other short-term capital projects (e.g. building project, new car, holiday, etc.), it is worthwhile maximising the Livret A and perhaps also to take advantage of the Livret Développement Durable account, which pays the same rate of interest for amounts up to €12,000.

However, since the limits on how much you can hold in the accounts were raised, it is concerning to see that some people are now using these accounts for longer-term savings. But if their actual ‘personal’ rate of inflation is anything like mine, then it is highly possible that they might have problems in the future because they will probably never reach their long-term savings goals, or have enough growth to support income needs.

An assurance vie is a far better product for medium to long-term savings and Rob and I have written on this website about this product many times. If you can’t find the articles in the archives of this website, call me and I will be happy to go over the advantages with you.

Sadly, some people turn away from these products, thinking them to be expensive or risky. However, if managed well, this should not be the case and we have many happy clients who benefit from this type of investment, as we do ourselves.

A testament of this is one of my clients who I met with last month to carry out their annual review. When they invested in the policy a year ago (using money that was sitting in a bank deposit earning little interest), we had concluded that they would need to draw an income of 3% per annum from their investment, after it had been in place for two years. Due to the reduction in the Sterling-Euro exchange rate, their pension income had reduced over the year, in Euro terms, and so they needed to start drawing upon their investment a year sooner than originally planned. During the one-year period, their investment had increased by 5.5% net, i.e.  after deductions for charges. Happily, not only were they able to start taking their regular withdrawals of 3%, but the real value of their capital had also been protected against inflation.

Clearly, the actual rate of return that investors make from assurance vie will vary from one to another, as much depends on the funds that are chosen for investment and the client’s attitude to investment risk should set the boundaries on this. Investment markets will go up and down in the short-term, but over the medium to long-term, decent returns can be achieved with good management. This includes managing cash-flow to make sure that income needs can be met, even if there is short-term volatility in markets.

So the tax-free accounts will remain attractive for certain purposes. I use mine for an emergency fund and also for saving for all those French tax bills that arrive from September to December. For any other purpose, I use assurance vie.

If you would like more information on saving for the medium to longer-term, please contact me for a confidential discussion either or by telephone on 04 68 20 30 17 or by e-mail at

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








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   Want to advertise but cant do the artwork?

Just email and i will try to sort it out, at no extra cost.







Email:;  National Website:

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 Local Association No : W112000594 




 Tech Talk



Cooler the better

Like many I am greatly enjoying the hot weather now that’s it’s finally here, but it’s not for everyone some enjoy a cooler temperature and this especially goes for your computer.

It’s a very good idea to have the computer is a cool room and away from direct sunlight and heat, many people report their computers run more slowly or crash when it’s hot.

Computer run much cooler now than a few years ago due to better designed processors but it’s still a very good idea to keep it as cool as you can. I advise cleaning the cooling vents by using a can of cleaning air to blow any dust and fluff out.


Air Duster, Canned cleaning air, Compressed dry air, soufflé  nettoyeur,

Link to Amazon -

If you have a laptop computer then is a very good idea to use a laptop cooling tray, these usually have a space underneath so the laptop can breathe or an electric fan powered from the USB to actively cool the laptop. Prices vary but start as low as 10 euro, I use one all year round to make sure the laptop stays cool.


Keeping your computer cool can help to prolong its life, can help preserve the condition of the battery and makes for a quieter experience there’s nothing worse than a fan spinning at high speed they make a terrible racket.

Link to Amazon -

In more extreme cases where your computer is constantly noisy, fans running at high speed and where its running slower than normal or crashing then you might also need to clean the internal fans on a desktop computer, or get a laptop cooler with a higher air flow.


Fact and myth

A large fan next to the computer will keep it cool – False, a fan next to computer will not really help unless the side is removed from a desktop computer and the fan directed into the case. On a laptop the cooling is through the base so air blowing over the top will not help.

Using a laptop on a hard surface will help it to cool – True, as a laptop cools from the underside a hard surface will help it to draw enough air, a cool hard surface (stone, marble work top, large china serving plate) are also very good.

Freezing spays or ‘3 in 1 oil’ spayed into the computer with cool it – False, you should not spray anything into the computer that is not designed specifically for the task, dry air only. 3 in 1 oil is electrically conductive and will short out the computer.

A large glass of iced water next to the laptop helps to cool it – True but not a good idea, water and computers do not mix (the cool air flowing down the outside of the glass can help the laptop to cool, but the chance of water dripping into the laptop is too high). It is however very good at keeping the user cool which is just as important.

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.







xavier alix 378x200


 Paillotes a4 - 2014 aude






















Inside every old person is a young person wondering what the hell happened

It seems more and more that during conversations with those of my own age group (significant birthday next year) and above, that there is a growing tendency to compare signs of ageing all of a sudden. ‘Are you going to dye your hair or just let it go naturally grey?’, ‘I seem to be developing a bit of a paunch, what do your reckon’?, ‘which bits have stopped working / withered away/ fallen off with you recently’?


So, here are a few well-know quotes about getting older – picked mainly for their humour value because there’s no point at all in getting depressed about ageing and, after all, laughing is good for you and has many health benefits!

Let’s have a good giggle together and perhaps plan to be a bit more pro-active about keeping ourselves in the best possible shape – and remember…… we’re all in this together!

Old age is no place for sissies.

You’ve got to be tough as you get older – to make the most of it you’ve got to work a bit at getting yourself in the best possible shape. Muscle mass declines alarmingly after  your 40’s and this accounts for a lot of frailty in older people -  BUT this is mainly because people are less active as they age - a 90 year old has nearly the same capacity as a 30 year old to increase muscle.  

Exercises you can do using your own body weight include squats, standing up out of a chair (if you think this one is a joke, try doing 20 stand-up and sit-downs, if you can do that, try standing up only using one leg to push up out of the chair), modified push-ups (against the wall for example), lying hip bridges, as well as non-traditional exercises that progress through a full range of motion, such as Thai Chi or Pilates and Yoga.

It’s no good saying you’ll get round to it, the benefits will start from day 1 -  and day 1 is TODAY!



We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.

Don’t think you’re too old do to things – OK, so for most of us it’s a bit late to apply to the British team for Rio 2016 and perhaps TV stunt work isn’t such a good idea, but think about things you CAN do. Most of us live fairly close to the mountains for example, you don’t have to ski to go out in the snow and have a silly time, get out there, strap on some snow shoes, chuck a few snowballs, make angels!

How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you were?

On a similar theme to the above, we all have a ‘numerical’ age and a ‘biological’ age – your biological age is the one over which we have a certain degree of influence. A body that moves regularly (doesn’t matter how, walking, gardening, swimming, cycling etc), isn’t carrying more weight than is necessary, isn’t subjected to smoking, excess drinking and rubbish food is bound to be biologically younger and therefore less likely to cause grief to it’s owner. Take responsibility for your body (and spoil it from time to time, give it a bit of TLC with a massage or something) – it’s yours and we only get one. And…….. before you say it is….. it’s never too late!


Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter.

Don’t let a number rule your life – the way you deal with ageing has a big influence on how ‘well’ you age. Speaking of ‘minds’…. Keeping your brain in shape is at least as important as keeping your biceps honed. ‘Use it or lose it’ is generally accepted to be very true when applied to our grey matter (and I’m not talking hair). Most people have a little more time (or could make a bit more time!) as they get older, take advantage….. living in France and learning a language other than our own is one of the best things you can do to keep your brain active. Why not look at the Open University pages – you no longer have to commit to a degree course, there are lots of short ‘taster’ sessions to choose from now, have a go at something different.

Old age is not so bad when you consider the alternatives.

Don’t regret getting older– it’s a privilege denied to many.



Finally…….. Don’t let aging get you down. It’s too hard to get back up.




Pat Penny - Health and Fitness Specialist,  Massage Therapist
European Register of Exercise Professionals




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The continued warm weather still means that garden jobs are best tackled in the relative cool of the morning; weeding and dead heading are on going tasks.  This is a good time to start thinking about harvesting from your garden; herbs such as lavender can be picked and hung to dry and remember to collect seed heads from annuals and easy to grow perennials - store these in a cool, dark place ready for September sowing.  If you have a Mexican Orange Blossom (Choisya ternata) in your garden it's a good idea to trim it back now to encourage a further flush of flowering later in the year.

There are still plenty of shrubs and perennials in flower in gardens.  One reliable summer flowering shrub is Caesalpinia gillesii (one of several plants that is sometimes called Bird of Paradise); from south America this will flower from late June into early September with yellow flowers and long red stamens, removing the seedheads as they form will help to encourage longer flowering.  It is winter hardy to about -12°C and likes deep, well drained soil and full sun with some supplementary water.  Towards the end of it's flowering season save some of the seeds and set them, it is easily raised from seed.

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. Open on Fridays & Saturdays from 10 to 18h and Sunday mornings from 10 to 12h from the beginning of March until the end of November and at any time of the year by appointment.
Do remember that you are welcome to visit the garden, without any obligation to buy, during the summer months to observe what is in flower and to talk about your gardens.






The Property Page







Situated in the tranquil village of Castelreng, yet only 7 minutes from Limoux, this charming two story cottage makes you want to move right in. The house has been impeccably renovated but the charm of the original french home has not been compromised. As you go through the door you are welcomed by an old stone fireplace which creates the perfect environment for cozy dining. Delicious meals are prepared nearby in the beautiful 21st century kitchen which is equipped with modern appliances for your convenience


 Belveze Cottage


A bijou! Cozy stand-alone guard barrier house about 1km from Belveze-du-Razes, a full service town. Ready to move into and is sold with all furnishings included in the price. 20 minutes from Salvaza airport. Lovely mature garden plus patio, surrounded by a laurel hedge and cypress trees. Many varieties of fruit and nut trees. Ample parking. Interior is 2 up, 2 down. Living room with wood-burning fireplace insert. Ceiling height adds spaciousness to this small, affordable home. Enjoy a quick bike trip into town for croissants and pastries or an evening at the local café. Walking trails lead from the house into the vineyards and to neighboring towns.


PRICE: 79,000 euros

 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 110,000 euros.  Please contact for further details and viewings.




Cepie, 11300 210,000€DSC00423


 Detached modern house

for sale in Montréal


Villa for sale 11390 Brousses-et-Villaret Aude 295,000 €


20120902-IMG 1663

CARCASSONNE: villa for quick sale - €135,000-


Holiday Apartment AiguaBlava,

Costa Brava


Naturist Property 115.000 euro


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

Bordebasse du Lac - Cottage available for long term rental


Semi detached house with stunning mountain views 150,000€



  readers write




Re - Expats who live in warm European countries face losing their winter fuel payments under a "temperature test" announced by the chancellor.  George Osborne said that the payment would be withdrawn from people living in warmer countries from autumn 2015. This will affect those living in a European country with an average winter temperature higher than that of the UK.

Perhaps the chancellor will consider a 'Summer Air-con Allowance' if average summer temperature is higher than that of the UK???!


Jain Woods

Hi Steve
Can your readers recommend who I should go to for reasonable and fair insurance for my house and cars. I have just sacked AXA for not being straightforward

when my French car broke in the UK .








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



Jeudi 25 Juillet 2013        

les Cabanes de Fleury  (vide greniers)     

Rieux-Minervois  (marché nocturne de la Saint Jacques)                 

Vendredi 26 Juillet 2013               

Rieux-Minervois  (vide-grenier nocturne de la Sainte Anne)         

Samedi 27 Juillet 2013   

Campagne-sur-Aude  (vide grenier)

Coursan  (Coursan)

Narbonne  (vide grenier dimanches et jours feries)

Saverdun  (vide-Greniers)

Dimanche 28 Juillet 2013              

Axat  (vide Grenier)

Carcassonne  (vide grenier brocante)

Coursan  (Vide grenier)

Durban-Corbières  (vide grenier)

Gruissan  (vide grenier et brocantes)

Leucate  (vide -greniers)

Leucate  (puces nautiques , vente de bateaux d'occasion)

Narbonne  (vide grenier dimanches et jours feries)

Port-la-Nouvelle  (vide greniers d'été)

Roubia  (vide greniers annuel)

Serres  (vide greniers)

Tourouzelle  (vide greniers)

Besset  (vide greniers)

Foix  (vide grenier)

La Bastide-de-Besplas  (vide grenier - Brocante - Artisanat)

Lescure  (vide greniers)

Orgibet  (vide grenier)


Pamiers  (Marché et puces et à la brocantes)

Rabat-les-Trois-Seigneurs  (vide greniers)

Jeudi 1 Août 2013            

les Cabanes de Fleury  (vide greniers)    








Vendredi 2 Août 2013   

Nébias  (vide grenier)     

Samedi 3 Août 2013       

Coursan  (Coursan)

Floure  (vide grenier nocturne)

Limoux  (bourse d'échanges véhicules anciens)

Narbonne  (vide grenier dimanches et jours feries)

Port Leucate  (vide greniers)

Salvezines  (vide grenier marche artisanal)

Saint-Girons  (vide-grenier dans le cadre "autrefois le couserans")

Saverdun  (vide-Greniers)          

Dimanche 4 Août 2013  

Leucate-Plage  (vide-greniers) renseigné par

Azille  (brocante vide greniers de la petanque)

Bizanet  (vide grenier annuel)

Carcassonne  (vide grenier brocante)

Carcassonne  (vide grenier au square gambetta)

Carlipa  (vide grenier- Brocante - Foire à tout)

Chalabre  (vide Grenier Bon'Action)

Coursan  (Vide grenier)

Gruissan  (vide grenier gymnastique volontaire de gruissan)

Lézignan-Corbières  (vide grenier)

Limoux  (bourse d'échanges véhicules anciens)

Limoux  (marché aux puces)

Narbonne  (vide grenier dimanches et jours feries)

Padern  (vide grenier en fête...)

Peyriac-de-Mer  (vide-greniers)

Port-la-Nouvelle  (vide greniers d'été)

Raissac-sur-Lampy  (vide grenier)

Mazères  (vide grenier mensuel)

Pamiers  (Marché et puces et à la brocantes)

Saint-Lizier  (marché aux Puces, de la cave au grenier)

Verdun  (Vide Grenier)

Mercredi 7 Août 2013    

Mirepoix  (6eme grand vide-grenier nocturne)


 What's On



MARK KNOPFLER 24 July Carcassonne Festival

KAAS CHANTE PIAF 22 Aug Festival Trenet, Narbonne

STEVE VAI 18 Sept Bikini Toulouse


STEEL PULSE 9 Oct Bikini Toulouse

LIL WAYNE 12 Oct Zenith Toulouse

TEXAS 16 Oct Zenith Toulouse

JANE BIRKIN 19 Oct Zinga Zanga Beziers

SUICIDAL TENDENCIES 23 Oct Bikini Toulouse

FAT FREDDY'S DROP 26 Oct Bikini Toulouse

FOALS 3 Nov Bikini Toulouse

SUEDE 4 Nov Bikini Toulouse

PIXIES 5 Nov Le Phare Toulouse

MORCHEEBA 9 nov Bikini Toulouse

CAT EMPIRE 10 Nov Bikini Toulouse  


ROMEO ET JULIETTE 15 Nov Zenith Toulouse

PHOENIX 16 Nov Zenith Toulouse

MAMMA MIA! 22 and 23 Nov Zenith Toulouse

CARLA BRUNI 27 Nov Casino Theatre Barriere, Toulouse

JAKE BUGG 10 Dec Bikini Toulouse


CARLA BRUNI 17 Jan Zinga Zanga Beziers

WITHIN TEMPTATION 20 Jan Bikini Toulouse 


CIRQUE DU SOLEIL, QUIDAM 5 TO 9 March Zenith Toulouse

JOHN MAYALL 8 March Bikini Toulouse

BETH HART 19 March Bikini Toulouse

HOLIDAY ON ICE 21 to 23 March Zenith Toulouse

 roquefer13  bullsounds
 artparcours  affiche nuit du blues pezenas4ok





 On a Lighter note








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.
informations sur les tarifs publicitaires et specifications.
Send details to of your advert to Steve Hedges.
Please note all text (unless in a finished advert) should be Plain Text,

Finished adverts should be submitted in jpeg format 378 pixels wide

Email your text, pictures and contact information to