Dune du Pilat Walk (and Lunch) : Arcachon : Thursday 24th March


It is some years since we enjoyed an outing circumnavigating this famous landmark – the highest dune in Europe. As last time we shall be avoiding the tourist hotspot but exploring different regions of the dune and beach (with dramatic views). a round tour of around 8km with some climbing ! In March it is easier to walk on the sand, and should not be too hot !! The Beach has just been rated the 2nd best in the World.

It is not easy to find convenient lunch venues close to the dune in March, but Chez Maynard at Petit Nice is a great Beach Restaurant and will be open, we have had some excellent meals there. We have been offered a special 25€ menu :

  • Salade de Roquette du Parmesan ou Salade Verte ou 6 Huitres
  • Confit de Canard ou Confit de Porc ou Onglet á l’échalotes ou Dos de Cabillaud
  • Crépes (variées) ou Glaces (variées)
  • Vins et Café

We shall meet at 10.30. From our meeting place we shall take a gradual descent, followed by a short ascent to summit of the south end of the dune, affording magnificent views over the Banc d’Arguin. We shall then descend to the beach and walk south for about 3km to our lunch venue. After lunch we return via a higher level walk, making an 8km round trip.

Those who feel not so energetic can avoid the uphill return, as a car will be left available at Pétit Nice ! When we get back close to the cars, those fit enough could take a ‘deviation’ to the top of the dune. Shoes or boots for walking in sand are recommended. Those who came last time rated this as one of the best BBC walks, with fantastic views, and the lunch was excellent. The sea has wreaked havoc on this coastline in the early part of this year, so it will be a different land and sea scape. There are also new archeological finds at the seaward base of the dune as it has ‘climbed over’ an Iron Age village ! It is also a popular Paragliding spot, which during the prevailing winds, adds to the spectacular views.


From Bordeaux take A63, then A660 towards Arcachon, after 4th roundabout on this fast dual carriageway take the exit signed to Dune du Pilat and Biscarrosse (D804). Cross the next roundabout and you will eventually see the huge dune on the skyline. At its base, also the tourist entrance there is your final roundabout where you turn left signed to Biscarrosse. After several km you will pass a number of campsites in front of the dune on your right. About 150 metres after the 3rd campsite (Pyla Camping) there is a hard sand verge on the right, with some additional hard sand parking behind it – look for the BBC sign !


Please complete the online registration form or book direct with Phil asap.  (Phil’s contact details are in the membership directory here )

Please give your menu choices to Phil (19th March latest)

When using the on-line booking form, please note the following:

  • Do not forget to press ‘Submit’
  • If you do not receive a confirmation from the organiser within 48 hours then your booking has not been recorded and we ask you to contact Phil direct for your booking confirmation.

Grand Christmas Party and Dinner - Friday 11th December 2015 at 7pm

Sold Out and a great time was enjoyed by all concerned!!

Update: Renee, Edith, Herr Flick, Helga and their friends have joined our association and booked their tickets.  Also, we hear that Capt. Bertorelli just cannot wait to meet the ‘Bay Bay Cay laydees’!

xmas-partyThis year following Members preferences from the membership survey, we are returning to the stunning Château La Chèze in Floirac for our annual Christmas Party and Dinner.  As requested, we have also suggested some lower cost hotel and transport options below.

The price is pegged at the same as last year, 45€ for members and 50€ for member’s guests.

The evening will commence at 7 pm with an apéro – an opportunity to meet up with friends and to welcome new members.

Dinner will be our special Christmas menu with a selection of wines.

After dinner, there is the option to while/wile away the evening, relaxing, chatting and maybe enjoying a drink or two from the free fully stocked bar.  At the other end of the room our resident DJ Gary Brooks has a wide range of different music to take us from the 1950’s to the present. All those memories will come flooding back!  The energetic can enjoy a boogie; maybe a smooch or two for the romantically inclined and we may be sure that some of the old faithfuls (music that is!) will make an appearance. Last year we all ran out of steam at 1:30am! (This year some ran out of steam at 04:00!!)

In summary, very much an evening to suit everyone.  To enjoy good food and wine. To be calm or to be energetic. The choice is yours. Oh ……. and also to enjoy great company in a beautiful environment!

* Venue

Château La Chèze – 27 Avenue Pierre Semirot, 33270 FLOIRAC.  The château was built in the late 19th century on the grounds of a former small fortified castle by a wealthy market gardener. The art nouveau style mansion has been modernized to high standards whilst retaining many of the original charming features. The staff are helpful, friendly and created and gave us a great ambiance for us last year.

* Menu

Please let us know your choice of menu by 1st December at the latest.

  • Apéro :
    • Kir and ‘amuse bouches’
  • Entrée:
    • Foie Gras mi-cuit aux tourchon et aux cranberries
    • OR Maki de Saumon a la creme fromages aux herbes et son mesclun
  • Main:
    • Ballotine de Volaille Forestiere deglace aux cognac, Puree de Patates Douces et Polee de Marrons
    • OR Dos de Lieu Noir aux Fruits de Mer, Mouseeeline de Panais aux Eclats de Marron
  • Desert:
    • Declanisation Autour de l’Annanas (mousse a l’annas, tartare d’ananas roti au miel, panaccotta l’ananas)
    • OR Assiette Gourmande de Noel (4 selections and cafe noir)
  • Coffee

* Overnight Accommodation and Transport Options
  • Château La Chèze – 27 Avenue Pierre Semirot, 33270 FLOIRAC
    • A special overnight rate of 85€ has been negotiated for a double room and breakfast.
    • Only available if booked direct with Carine Bismuth at the château with reference to the special price for the ‘Bordeaux British Community’ otherwise you will not receive the reduced rate
    • The château has 14 rooms but many have already been booked by members for the party

There are a number of local hotels available nearby.  Some of these hotels are listed below. The room rates are for a double room for the night of 11th December.  The prices will increase as we get closer to Christmas, so book early!

  • Hôtel Formule Club – 5 Rue Condorcet, 33150 CENON
    • 2.3 km by car from Château La Chèze
    • If there is sufficient demand we will investigate the possibility of hiring a minibus to take members from the Hôtel Formule Club in Cenon to the château and return at the end of the evening.
      • The cost would be divided between the participating passengers and payable in advance.
      • Please indicate your interest on the ‘transport section‘ of your event booking form here below as soon as possible so that we may go ahead and investigate the possibilities if there are sufficient numbers.
    • Eight different styles of room quoted at 43€, 46€, 50€, 55€, 57€ etc for 11th December.  Website here
    • Several of our members have stayed at this hotel and reported good value for money.
  • Hôtel Altica – rue de la Gabarre, 33270 FLOIRAC
    • 3.4 kms by car from Château La Chèze
    • 05 57 97 70 70 or website and book on-line here
    • 42 quoted for a double room for the 11th December
  • Hôtel F1 – 50rueEmileHenriot, QuaidelaSouys, 33100 BORDEAUX-BASTIDE
    • 2.8 km by car from Château La Chèze
    • 0891 70 51 93 
    • 30,60€ quoted for a double room for 11th December or 34€ with easy cancellation
  • Hôtel Kyriad – 1 Avenue de Paris 33310 LORMONT
    • 4 km by car from Château La Chèze
    • 0892 23 48 13 or website and on-line reservation here
    • 48€ for two for 11 December or 68€ with cancellation option

* Transport Options

taxi_m23Minibus – If there is sufficient demand we will investigate the possibility of hiring a minibus to take members from the Hôtel Formule Club in Cenon to the château and return at the end of the evening. (see above)

Taxis – Recommend that you book your taxi in advance rather than waiting until you need it. When booking your taxi, please make sure that you have the château address to hand which is: Château La Chèze, 27 Avenue Pierre Semirot, 33270 FLOIRAC

  • The château reception will book your taxi but definitely do not wait until the last minute
  • 3985.fr – Dial 3985 to make a reservation (note that this is a premium line  – 1,35€ plus 0.34€ per minute)
  • Aquitaine Taxi Radio – 05 56 86 80 30  or aquitainetaxiradio@wanadoo.fr  (Located in Cenon)
  • Pages Jaune – In the first search box enter ‘taxi’ and enter ‘floirac’ or ‘cenon’ in the second box.  There are several taxis located in Cenon and Floirac





Thalassothérapie visit Arcachon: Friday 27th November


This our second session at the spa at Arcachon.

It is very good value at 55£ for 5 hours in the facility including massage, aquagym, hammam, sauna and the pools with many different types of water jets and an area for swimming.

You can also relax on the sunbeds and watch the world go by.

We had a very tasty lunch, but this was possibly too rich before visiting a spa! Unfortunately the Thalazur is closing soon for modernisation so we will have to wait for the spring reopening.

Thank you Sarah for organising us and Deirdre for making up the trio.

Report by Norma C

What are Noisettines? Find out on Wednesday, 25th November

Noisettines du Médoc

We will commence the day with lunch, at 12 noon, in a traditional Médocaine restaurant, Le Bouchon d’Esteuil in Place du 19 Mars 1962, Saint Germain d’Esteuil located south of Lesparre Médoc.

A great opportunity to enjoy delicious, authentic médocaine cuisine!

The restaurant website is: www.lebouchondesteuil.fr

After lunch we will visit to the atelier at the Noyez family’s establishment making the delicious noisettines.

For those unsure of what a Noisettine du Médoc is, then take a look at the website www.noisettines.fr

The visit lasts around 40 minutes and will be in French.

Lunch Choices

There are two menus and Deirdre needs to know by Monday 16th November at the latest what you would like to eat.  The menu choices are:

  • Menu 1
    • Salad Périgourdine with gezier, coeur de volaille, magret fumé, fois gras and salad.
    • Brochette of Magret with a honey sauce, pomme dauphinoise and vegetable
    • Fondant chocolat with a red fruit coulis
  • Menu 2
    • Traditional charcuterie
    • Fish, either salmon or cod in a papilotte
    • Apple crumble with a red fruit coulis

The price is 25€ including wine and coffee. Rather more than we usually pay but very well worth it for this delicious authentic Médoc cuisine.  Monsieur assures Deirdre that all his produce is fresh!

Dierdre is fairly sure that she will be able to ask him to mix and match between the two menus but before the November 16th please!

The restaurant will be closed to the public and the staff are dedicated to serve us exclusively.

Address and Map to the Restaurant


Le Bouchon d’Esteuil, Place du 19 Mars 1962, Saint-Germain-d’Esteuil


Please click here


  • From Bordeaux take the N1215 from junction 7 on the Rocade.
  • Keep on the N1215 passing by Castelnau de Médoc and St Laurent Médoc.
  • Keep heading north
  • Once you get on to dual carriageway look out for a sign to the right to St Germain d’Esteuil and Artiguillon
  • Take the St Germain turning and keep following signs to St Germain
  • In St Germain you will see the church on your left and the restaurant is right there

There is plenty of parking.

Address and Map to the Noisettine Atelier


Noisettines du Medoc, 1 La Landette, 33340 Blaignan


Latitude : 45.32559941008895
Longitude : -0.8739280700683594


Please click here


Please book online or direct with Dierdre

2015 Annual General Meeting – Thursday 12th November at 10:30

agmAn Annual General Meeting for any organization should be the most important event in the year for its owners. As members of the BBC, you are its ‘owners’. The AGM is therefore your opportunity to get involved in the way your club is run. You will hear from the Committee about what has happened during the year, question them, elect next year’s officers and propose changes.

Before we start the meeting at 11:00 we will enjoy refreshments starting at 10:30!

Better this year!

To help you to do these things, the Committee has decided to make some changes this year. Firstly, the date has been deferred a little, until 12 November, so that the Treasurer can prepare and issue, in advance of the AGM, the financial report on our activities for the year up to the end of September.

This, together with the general report on our activities, and any proposals or recommendations from the Committee, will be issued to all members at least two weeks before the AGM, so that everyone can consider them in advance.  The AGM agenda and papers are here in the Members Area.  (If you have lost your password then please ‘click’ here)

We have also changed the timing of the AGM from the to 11:00 and it will be held at the British Consulate as usual. We hope the change of timing will be more convenient for more members.

If you have any suggestions regarding issues, which you would like to be considered at the AGM or if you are interested in serving on the Committee, then please let John, our President, know as soon as possible or include in the online booking form.


profile-pictures-albumLunch will be at  restaurant Le Pere Ouvrard, 39 avenue de la Libération, 33110 LE BOUSCAT  There are two car parks near by and the restaurant is situated a short 350 metre walk to the Consulate.  Lunch will be three courses plus wine and coffee for a subsidised BBC AGM members price of 19€ normal price 25€) comprising:

Salade de Poitrine de Poulet au cumin

Filet de Canard écrasé de pommes de terre au beurre

Fondant au Chocolat avec sauce nougatine

Vin and Café

Car Parking
  • Option 1 – Park near the restaurant Le Pere Ouvrard and walk c350 metres to the Consulate for the meeting.  When facing the restaurant entrance in avenue de la Libération, there is an entrance to a public car park immediately on your right
  • Option 2- With the restaurant on your right, drive slowly past until you see the Cdiscount store also on your right. There is a car park entrance immediately after Cdiscount and before the next building
  • Option 3 – Park in the side streets around and about the Consulate

Public Transport
  • Option 1 – Tram Ligne C to Jardin Publique and enjoy a nice walk through the park and then up along rue David Johnson to boulevard President Wilson. c1.9 kms
  • Option 2 – Bus stop Carnot is directly opposite the Consulate.  Bus stop Barrière du Médoc is approximately 200 metres away from the consulate

Remembrance Service – Sunday 8th November at 10:15

Bx_remembrance_3Remembrance Service at the Allied Forces Cemetery in Talence. Assemble at 10:15 for the procession into the cemetery

Address: Allied Forces Cemetery, rue Bahus, 33400 TALENCE  –  GPS: N 44.814745, W 0.584240

This moving and sombre annual ceremony will be conducted in the presence of H.M.Consul and the U.S. Consul-General. The BBC wreath will be laid by our President. The event will commence at 10.15 with the impressive procession entering at 10.30. The service will last approximately 30 minutes. There is ample on street parking nearby.

As is customary, our members will mingle with members of the British Legion and join them for lunch, the venue is not yet decided.

The Classic Rock Show

classic_rock_show_2016_300If you are a fan of Led Zep, Dire Straits, Pink Floyd, Queen etc then do not miss The Classic Rock Show at the Casino, Bordeaux on Tuesday 24th November at 20:30. Full details are here

(Please book direct)

TEE Announcement to subscribers

* TEE – The English Evening – Thursday 3rd November (Members only)


JigsawThe Franco-British Business Association invites members of the Association ‘Bordeaux British Community’ to the first edition of TEE – The English Evening.  Please ‘click’ here for full details.




Information Event: Martignas - Tuesday, 27th October at 14:30

Healthcare, Savings, Tax and Inheritance Advice


The event which was originally scheduled for June has now been arranged for Tuesday 27th October at 14:30.  All other arrangements are unchanged.

This is not a social event. It is a series of presentations designed to assist an “étranger” to get the best out of their scarce resources when it comes to healthcare, savings and tax and inheritance.

It will be held at a members house in Martignas.  The event will be informative with presentations, a question session and a chance to talk informally to the presenters. Numbers will be limited by space to 30 people and there will be no charge.

savingsThe BBC Statutes specify the aims of the association to also assist the integration of English speaking people who come to settle in Bordeaux. One way of doing this is by helping to understand how the French system works and how to make our resources work better for us.

For example, the British are familiar with how the National Health Service is supposed to work but when living in France, they must quickly learn how to get along in the health system or they may find it very costly. Once familiar with it they will recognize how lucky the French are. But this is more than knowing how to get along and more about how to make the most of it and not get caught with unexpected costs through not understanding.

health_benes_claim_form1Having lived in France for 15 years, I sometimes think that I know all these things, but then something happens and I realize that there is a massive gap in my knowledge. If you are like me or you have just moved or are about to move to France, you might like to meet with some experts. The subjects being covered will include; the healthcare system, making your money and savings work for you, and changes to inheritance arrangements. This is not a sales exercise or advertising but if there is any follow up activity with the presenters or others, that is up to individual members.


Please book direct with John B (contact details are in the Members Area here) or online:

Walk at Labarde (Medoc) : Thursday 22nd October


The instructions said follow the D2 until you get to the church in Labarde. Having been on the same road the day before in glorious sunshine for a round of golf at Margaux, I was doubting my sanity as the car wipers struggled to clear the rain so that I could see the Labarde church. The prospect of a 6km walk in such conditions was not filling me with enthusiasm but we are British and rain is never a problem – despite having a Dutch organizer ably assisted by an American.

However, by the time our group of 11 had gathered, the rain had moderated to drizzle and the sky was clearing. After setting off and walking a short distance along the road, we turned into a substantial forest. We were all reassured by our leader sporting a special ramblers GPS device round his neck, and the fact that his assistant had the instructions in a waterproof container. Any reason for concern was soon put to rest when it became clear that the route was very easy, consisting mainly of straight tracks through the forest. Also, the ‘assistant’ lived locally and frequently walked in the woods (and had never met the big bad wolf). Eventually, we emerged from the woods to find ourselves at the gates of Chateau Giscours and one of our fellow walkers commented that he had played cricket there and we were shown a splendid cricket pitch.

The leisurely and attractive 6 km walk returned us to the Labarde church, next door to our luncheon venue, the Auberge des Grands Vins. This venue proved to be cosy and warm with good food and friendly and efficient service at very reasonable prices. However, good as it was, the reason for recommending a visit is to see the murals. Every wall (and the ceiling) has been painted in a variety of styles. One wall depicts a modern day feast, possibly featuring local personalities. Other areas are painted with semi-classical scenes but depicting numerous attractive but poverty stricken young ladies who were clearly unable to afford clothing. (I must admit that there may have been similar pictures of young men but I cannot remember them).

I am convinced that the sun was shining when we left the restaurant but I was very glad that the early rain had not deterred me from the experience. Our thanks for that go to Piet de Bie and Elizabeth Maggiora, the assistant and organizer, or was it the other way around? Whatever, they made it very enjoyable and great fun.

Report and Photo by John B.