Ping-pong and darts in the outbuilding, two friendly donkeys in the field; this 18th-century longere down the track from the chateau is a super house for family hols. A neat lawn and trimmed hedge await, along with a cheery welcome. John inherited the place from his French mother, and he and Rebecca are kind, friendly hosts. Enter the amazing ground floor, crowned by beams and open to the eaves, with a table for ten at one end and comfy sofas at the other, and a stately stone fireplace. Plants, pictures, ornaments and candles create a friendly, laid-back space, while a tomette-tiled floor runs through to the kitchen, adding a farmhouse feel. Off the corridor are three twin bedrooms, plain, simple and sharing a shower (there’s another, newer shower on the landing). Upstairs, the master bedroom reigns supreme. Huge, open plan and beamy, it’s distinguished by ancient oak studwork; peep through the timbers to your deep bath and twin basins. You can wander the medieval seaport of Honfleur, visit the calvados and cider producers, go riding up the road, dine in Deauville.