Suzanne in France

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This town, whose name has been abbreviated from Sourdeval-la-Barre, is a delightful ville in the Manche area of Normandy that boasts about 3,000 inhabitants. The town is mid-way between the major cities of Caen and Rennes, and 17km from Vire-Calvados. Part of the area’s appeal is its accessibility from the local airports, at Rennes, Caen, Deauville and ferry ports – Caen Ouistreham is just over an hour’s drive away. Nearby, at Vire, you can catch a train to reach Paris in around two hours and 30 minutes.

Sourdeval was ‘three flower’-rated by Le Conseil National des Villes et Villages Fleuris (The National council of Cities and Villages in Bloom), based on the welcome and care afforded to residents and tourists, and the standard of its public areas. The town boasts a play park, tennis courts and many sporting and recreational facilities and associations that are open to all, together with a campsite and car area. Sourdeval hosts a local market, every Tuesday which, along with annual fetes, firework displays, community meals and a carnival, keeps it buzzing year round.

Sourdeval is definitely not a ‘drive through’ town. There’s a pretty square, an imposing church, restaurants, a cinema, hotels, schools, doctors’ surgeries and two supermarkets. When strolling around, you mainly hear French, English or Dutch being spoken, with the odd smattering of Patois, the old local dialect. New shops and businesses seem to always be opening and the local Mairie actively encourages diversity.

Around Sourdeval you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to things to do. It’s just a 10-minute drive to a fabulous 18-hole golf course and the Lac Dathée, where you can pilot a pedalo, take sailing classes, fish, walk, picnic or use the man-made beach. Drive just 15 minutes out and you’ll be in the huge forest at Saint-Sever, which is great for hiking, picnics, dog-walking or horse-riding. There are also plenty of trout fishing spots along the river Sée, which runs through the valley.

Property prices in and around Sourdeval are very reasonable and the area offers a great choice of urban or rural living. British buyers say that the area reminds them of rural England about 30-50 years ago, owing to the lush fields, attractive hedgerows, plethora of working farms and the genuine sense of community.

There is little wonder then, that we have based our office here. Suzanne’s home is in Sourdeval and our small team live in and around the surrounding villages.

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