The Deux-Sèvres – a quick guide to this beautiful and fascinating department.

deuxsevresIf you’re thinking of moving to the Deux Sèvres, have recently moved here or haven’t yet had the chance to explore, it’s certainly an area that’s well worth getting to know.DS Michelin Sign

Meaning “two rivers” (the Sèvre Nantaise and the Sèvre Niortaise), the Deux Sèvres which is part of the Nouvelle-Aquitaine region of western France, is right on the cusp of where north France meets the south. It’s a tranquil, laid back and unspoilt department which enjoys a Mediterranean climate and is the second sunniest region of France. But it’s still within easy reach of the UK, so it’s perhaps unsurprising that so many expats and English speakers have made it their home.



Its capital is the delightful and historic city of Niort with its superb market and medieval castle and it’s also a thriving centre for finance. The department itself remains predominantly based on agriculture and arable farming and in particular the Deux Sèvres is well known for its Angelica, its walnuts and its Parthenais cattle, as well as its goat’s cheese. And it is of course home to many vineyards.

An unspoilt landscape, steeped in history.

With a fascinating history to explore, stretching back to the Neolithic and the middle ages, here you’ll find everything from ancient burial grounds, Romanesque churches, chateaux and museums as well as fortified towns and the hauntingly beautiful marshes of the Marais Poitevin, home to the idyllic “Green Venice” and an artist’s paradise. Or you can simply enjoy discovering the many sleepy villages, colourful markets and vibrant festivals which you’ll find throughout the summer months.


Some useful links

In Case of Emergency Leaflet

This leaflet guides you through making an emergency phone call.  It has been produced as part of a collaboration between the SDIS79 [Deux-Sèvres Sapeur Pompières] and the European Working Group [Pays de Gatine], who came up with the initiative.

In Case Of Emergency Leaflet

Poitou-Charentes Chaplaincy

The Chaplaincy of Poitou-Charentes is situated in Western France, it covers four departments, Vienne, Deux-Sèvres, Charente and Charente-Maritime. It is part of the Archdeaconry of France in the Diocese of Europe. For further information go to


Internet based independent up-to-date information, all you need for your life in another France. For further information go to

The Connexion – France in English

The Connexion is a monthly newspaper which will keep you up-to-date with what is happening in France. For further information go to

Deux-Sèvres Monthly

A free monthly publication for the English speaking community living or holidaying in the Deux-Sèvres and surrounding areas of France. This publication has stopped as of February 2023. For further information go to

Living Magazine

Living Magazine is a free bi-monthly publication for the English speaking community of Poitou-Charentes, Dordogne, Vendee and Haute-Vienne.. For further information go to

British Passport renewal information pages

For further information go to

UK FCO Travel Information

For up to date travel and destination information before you travel abroad. For further information go to

Eye Tests

The details of the eye specialist at Niort Hospital are:
Dr. G. Pebayle, Chef de Service. (He speaks perfect English)
Centre Hospitalier de Niort, 40 Avenue Charles de Gaulle, 79021 Niort. 5th Floor – Lift No. 2
Tel: 05 49 78 32 81 (appointments are necessary and the receptionists do not speak English) You can ask for a ‘rendez-vous prive’ held on a Tuesday afternoons – possibly also on a Thursday afternoon, but this may need clarification. These rendezvous cost in the region of 35€ subject to change).
He tests your eyesight, checks the back of the eyes (essential for diabetics) and issues prescriptions for glasses or eye drops etc. He also diagnoses and carries out operations for cataracts and obviously more important eye operations.

Speed Cameras in France

Up to date information on speed cameras in France and information about fines. For further information go to

Carte de sejour

The latest status on applying for a carte de sejour. PDF available to download here

More information on this website


Welfare resources for France and for UK citizens abroad.

Should any member require any assistance with regards to Welfare, in the first instance please go to

Medical Emergency Leaflet

This leaflet provides a list of useful words and phrases for use in a medical emergency or a visit to the doctor or a hospital It has been produced by Centre Hospitalier d’Angoulême for le Pays Ruffécois.

Medical Emergency Leaflet

SOS Helpline

Confidential English-speaking emotional support helpline.

Fuel Prices

Up to date information on where to get the best price for fuel in your local area and France. For further information go to

European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)

From the 1st May 2012 anyone receiving a UK state pension will need to have a EHIC issued by the UK. Those to whom this applies will in due course receive communication from “The Pension Service”. Further information about the EHIC is available from the following website:

French Emergency Telephone Information

You can download and print the attached PDF and keep handy in case of need.

Welfare Sheet Tel Nos

Death & Dying in France

All of us like to think that we are to some extent immortal; because of this the majority of people do not like to think of death, either of ourselves or someone close to us. Sadly, few of us are aware of the many practical things that need to be done after someone has died. Having to deal with this difficult time in a country that is not our place of origin is hard enough. We may be faced with a minefield of additional questions and concerns and no matter how well we have learned the language, at one of the most stressful times of our lives it is imperative to know we are doing the right thing.

If you need this important information, download and print the PDF document. This document is 13 pages long.

Death Dying info sheet FINAL.pdf

Pays de Gâtine

The Pays de Gâtine covers about a third of the department of the Deux-Sèvres. working actively to improve public services and housing conditions. Developing local economy is one of the major preoccupations of the Pays de Gâtine and many initiatives have been taken to help bring back employment and to help set up businesses. Today, the Pays de Gâtine is spread over 10 cantons. It regroups 103 small communes and has more than 75,500 inhabitants. For further information go to

Cancer Support in France

Cancer Support offers help and support to those affected by cancer in total confidence. For further information  go to, or ring June Searchfield, President of Cancer Support Deux Sèvres. Tel. no. 05 49 64 59 96 or e-mail