Site content map

This page is an experiment — to lay out the majority of the content added to the site since it took this format — and to do so on one page. There are various missing items, thank goodness, with each section explaining what these might be. Did I mention anything about icebergs?

Main content pages


pages of this site, around half of which were culled in a radical pruning around 2013. Hard sell pages seem — over time — to be decreasingly convincing. Page titles, below, are displayed conditionally.

January 20, 2013
September 14, 2017
December 28, 2017
April 17, 2018
January 20, 2013
A CMS, a 'brochure' website or a blog?
January 20, 2013
Affordable tailor-made websites
January 20, 2013
Designing for the search engines
January 20, 2013
How easy is it to edit your own website?
January 20, 2013
Mentions légales
January 22, 2013
No templates
June 15, 2008
Other issues to consider about websites
January 20, 2013
Responsive (mobile-friendly) websites
January 24, 2013
The advantages of using a CMS
January 20, 2013
Why use Drupal for a CMS website?
January 20, 2013

Website projects

Various projects have come off this list over time. Businesses have moved on, new owners have come in with their existing web team, proprietors have taken employment or properties have been successfully sold because their website did its job as intended. This is just as it should be.

Premier French Rentals - outstanding French holiday property
October 10, 2013
9 Shepperton Road - a property sale
January 22, 2013
Happy Momes - English language schools in France
January 22, 2013
The Keeping Place - a quality holiday rental
January 22, 2013
MENATA - promoting travel to North Africa and the Middle East
January 22, 2013
Karrageen - a caravan and camping park
January 22, 2013
Galeriejohn - a virtual art gallery in Drupal
January 22, 2013
Erintours - group golfing tours, a CMS
January 22, 2013
630 Kings Highway East - a property sale
January 22, 2013
Les Bioles - a property sale
January 22, 2013
Peter Hibbard - sculptures
January 22, 2013
Alison Dove, Landscape and Garden Design
January 22, 2013
Oxygen - public relations
January 22, 2013
Les Pignons - an Aquitaine property sale
January 22, 2013
Louisa Jones - gardens in Provence
January 22, 2013
DotRational Software - selling Windows consumer software
January 22, 2013
Experience-English - a CMS - learning English in France
January 22, 2013
Kingdom Végétal - for palms, specimen plants and olive trees
January 22, 2013
Plantes et Paysages - a Drupal CMS
January 22, 2013
Séjours linguistiques - learn English in the Gers
January 22, 2013
Freewheelin' campers - classic VW campervan hire
December 8, 2012

Blog posts


blog posts. These are on topics ranging from the technical (web design) to the commercial (being a freelancer) to the nifty (great software to use) as well as the annoying and delighting.

February 7, 2018
August 24, 2017
April 20, 2017
January 2, 2017
June 24, 2016
June 7, 2016
July 15, 2015
March 25, 2015
August 16, 2014
April 26, 2014
March 14, 2012
November 20, 2011
November 19, 2011
November 17, 2011
March 30, 2011
February 15, 2010
May 24, 2009
March 26, 2009
June 16, 2008
June 9, 2008

Website development and design reading list


volumes do indeed sit on my shelves and, yes, I have read them all — bar the odd chapter here or there. They have helped me to stay out of the classroom and have nourished me immeasurably. I’ve not used a star system to set one above another, but my comments alongside each may help perform that function. Some of these books I find — and still find — to be quite simply invaluable.

January 21, 2018
January 2, 2018
November 18, 2017
January 18, 2017
September 26, 2016
June 7, 2016
October 30, 2015
December 12, 2014
August 14, 2014
January 20, 2013
January 20, 2013
January 20, 2013
January 20, 2013
January 20, 2013
January 20, 2013
January 20, 2013



places, each of which have a story to be told. Some of them originate from our teaching website in France (with its less complicated language).

June 20, 2018
May 28, 2018
May 22, 2018
April 25, 2018
November 14, 2017
December 1, 2016
July 26, 2016
June 22, 2016
June 22, 2016
June 16, 2016
August 22, 2014
November 24, 2013
September 25, 2013
July 11, 2013
November 22, 2012
November 21, 2012
November 15, 2012
September 27, 2012
August 4, 2012
August 4, 2012

French archive posts


posts about living and teaching in rural France. From 2010 onwards until we returned to England in 2016, we enjoyed working with French adults and youngsters who came to stay with us at our house in the Gers to work on their English. With both of us being qualified teachers, we like to think that we made something of an impact.

This experience was immensely rewarding for Jane and I, not least because it gave us insight into the value various French people placed upon learning English. We also made many friends, some of whom we continue to see even though we no longer live in France.

We advertised the business through our own website,, now no longer live. We also developed a collection of blog posts which we hoped would allow potential clients to get a feel for what it might be like staying with us.

In my capacity as a website designer, this part of the business had its own appeal as I could see how powerful an informal blog can be when attached to the more formal pages of a business website. Sometimes these English language blog pages would rank on page one of Google France’s search results, an unintended consequence of using HTML without tricks or paid-for advertising.

For sentimental reasons, some of these French-based blog posts have found a final resting place in this section of the site.

Software development archive


software projects. Prior to designing and building websites, I was a freelance software developer writing systems for clients for distribution on CD-ROM. This was when I learned to listen to clients and design systems that responded to the detailed requirements of their projects.

The following applications are software projects (not website projects) that demonstrate some of these qualities. Written in either VB.NET or ToolBook Asymetrix/Click2Learn ToolBook Developer (the first Windows-based multimedia software authoring system) they are — with one exception — front-ends to databases. The majority of them are eLearning or course-management applications.

These projects taught me the need for precision and thoroughness. Programs needed to work on a huge range of devices and in a variety of diverse situations. Robust error-reporting procedures were as important as perfecting the random seeding of a three-dimensional array or the bi-directional highlighting of a multi-colour product-to-property menu system!

Welcome to the pre-internet museum!

Good reading

A short selection of books that have left their mark. (If I keep to my target, this list will keep expanding.)