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One year on…our achievements

Back in early March we reflected on our first year in France. On May 2nd 2023 we signed for the property, and when we say signed we literally both signed every piece of the 50+ page document! Arriving in France a couple of months before we completed gave us the opportunity to get familiar with the lakes and chalets and consider what we felt needed to be done to put our stamp on the place. By the end of the first month we had a long list of what we wanted to do but knew that most of the work would need to wait until the winter months when the lakes were closed. Now one year on from taking ownership of the property we can reflect on what we have achieved here.

Compliance works and lakes

The priority was always to get the lakes compliant with the regulations. It was evident from our first month here that there were major problems with water going over the dam walls every time it rained heavily and we were aware of the requirements following an inspection prior to the purchase. A quote for the works had been obtained by the previous owners and they had agreed to pay half of this. What we didn’t realise was how long it would all take, especially with no help from the weather, and how much more would need to be added to the original quote after further issues were uncovered.

It is nearly completed though, Lac Lucie was signed off mid February and the majority of the work on Kingfisher is completed. We have a small amount of work to be done on the stream and at the far end of Kingfisher to complete as this was delayed by the rain and this will be done later in the season when there are no guests.

We are pleased with the new look of the lakes, the grass is now starting to grow after a few weeks of sunshine and the tree stumps are starting to sprout. It has been hard work and over twice the cost that we originally thought but once it is done it is done. This is a brief summary of what has been done

  1. Approximately 50 trees removed or taken down to 1m on Lac Lucie and Kingfisher in line with the regulations as if they had fallen they could have breached the dam (not something we had any choice over sadly)
  2. New valve system and overflow built on Lac Lucie and Kingfisher overflow adjusted to the correct height
  3. New silt trap dug on Lac Lucie
  4. New grills on Lac Lucie
  5. Dam wall banks rebuilt and widened on Lac Lucie and reinforced with a lot of ‘caillou bleu’ (heavy grey stone) to help prevent the coypu from digging into it
  6. Majority of stream behind Kingfisher cleared out
  7. Drainage trench dug along main bank of Kingfisher
  8. Both sets of steps revamped on Lac Lucie

We still need to finish clearing the stream around Kingfisher, take a few more trees down near the overflow on Kingfisher and sort out the inlet issues on Kingfisher to ensure compliance here. We also want to revamp the 6 swims around the lakes and clear some more of the overgrown areas. The nature trail that we want to create through our woodlands will also need to wait a little longer,

Lac Lucie February 2024
Kingfisher January 2024
Stream February 2024


We had stayed in Lac Lucie for the first month of being here and had previously fished on Kingfisher and this gave us some ideas for changes we wanted to make but after several guests identified issues with the floor in Kingfisher we knew that we had to make that a priority over the winter. This is what we have achieved for the chalets

  1. Joists, floorboards and flooring replaced under the kitchen and bathroom in Kingfisher
  2. Kitchen cupboards in Kingfisher replaced or revamped
  3. Fridge freezers replaced in both chalets
  4. New hob in Kingfisher
  5. New storage in main bedroom and bathroom in Kingfisher
  6. Living area in Kingfisher rearranged
  7. New bedding and towels for all beds in both chalets
  8. Freesat boxes installed in both chalets
  9. Lac Lucie restained and rotten wood replaced on gables
  10. New swimming pool pumps for both chalets
  11. New sunbeds and outside chairs for both chalets

Over the summer we hope to give both chalets a new coat of stain and next winter we will look at replacing the flooring in Lac Lucie chalet as well as replacing all of the window blinds for curtains in both chalets.

Kingfisher living space
Kingfisher double bedroom
Lac Lucie twin bedroom

Other things….

There are obviously other things that need to also go on behind the scenes to run a successful carp fishing business. This is what we have changed away from the lakes and chalets.

  1. New bivvies, rods, chairs, nets, scales, bedchairs etc to replace those which were broken or tired
  2. New logo (credit to Isobel Garner, thank you!)
  3. New website and social media pages
  4. New signs produced for both lakes
  5. Shop and office redecorated and rearranged
  6. Boilie recipes tweaked and new labels made for pots
  7. New gazebo cover and table and chairs
  8. All forms and documents reviewed and refreshed

There will always be things that we are revisiting and will always consider what we could do better and how things could be improved on for our guests. We have really appreciated the suggestions and feedback given to us by our guests and have taken a lot of these on board when considering what we need to do. We will continue to do this and make changes as needed.

Finally, on reflection we had an amazing first season here at Carp France Fishing, so successful that many of the weeks booked for 2024 are people who are returning to us from last year and 38% are people who have booked directly with us, either through social media or through the website. We hope that our 2nd year here is as productive and successful….. à bientôt

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