15 years on, I still speak French with an accent

Tom Rowe at a music event in his home town of La Rochelle

Young movers: ‘It was sink or swim!’ says Tom Rowe who arrived in France at age 13

Tom Rowe's City-worker father decided 15 years ago that he had had enough of the rat race and the family should move to France.

So they moved to a home near Sainte-Hermine, in Vendée, that Tom’s grandparents had bought when his mother was a child.

Tom, who now lives in La Rochelle, joked: “They have always summed it up as a midlife crisis without the crisis.

“It’s a beautiful area – a lot of English people are there. La Rochelle and Nantes are both nearby, so it’s practical for travelling to the UK.”

Tom, who was 13 at the time, said he had learned some “practical French” at school in the UK – “maybe I could ask Jérome for ...

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