Government Help


To: The French Prime Minister & President

Dear Sirs,

With this pandemic wreaking havoc in our countries I apologise for burdening you with my minor problems but to obtain any goals in life you need to be prepared to do anything to realise your visions and dreams hence this letter to you in the hope you may see the benefit for France and its people to invest in my project.


Abbaye de Blanchelande

This building is inscrit au titre des Monuments Historiques. It is indexed in the Base Mérimée, a database of architectural heritage maintained by the French Ministry of Culture, under the reference PA50000015


My request, my vision, my dream:

I need your governments help and I would hope you would take an hour of your time to hear my plea and help me save this property.

I would like the French government to help me procure this historic abbey so that I can restore it and turn it into a world class tourist attraction in the Prime Ministers region of Normandy. What I propose once The Abbey is restored is a tourist hub for visiting the Normandy region with a world class rose garden, a wedding venue, a cidery and meadery and a market garden and apiary plus anything that will sell to tourists as product/giftware/souvenirs from the property, France and the world.

Around 90 million tourists visit France each year and this is more than France's population of 65 million. France is the number one tourist destination in the world contributing 79.8 billion euros to the economy and the tourist industry employs 2.9 million people directly and indirectly. The longer you hold tourists in France the more they spend so the more attractions you have the longer they stay.

305 million people live in countries bordering France or are in close proximity, so highlighting what Normandy and The Abbey have to offer will bring the tourists. 12.7 million English tourists visit every year with travel via the chunnel being fast and economical at between 50-143 euro.

Opening The Abbey as a tourist destination with the ajoining country population figures stated and with Normandy already a tourist hot spot surely the financial viability of The Abbey is assured. The money earned from expenditures by foreigners are crucial drivers of economic development and can be an important source of foreign exchange.

Tourism income is not limited to restaurant and hotel bills, but includes all types of expenditures ranging from transportation to medical care to clothing, gifts and souvenirs. Data shows that tourism accounts for over 8 percent of this expanded definition of exports, making it comparable to trade in oil and energy, and just slightly smaller than trade in agricultural products. The following chart shows the breakdown in tourist expenditure by category.

Tourist Spend Breakdown


In analysing credit card data of 40 countries the breakdown of tourist spend above shows that 30% of money tourists spend is on accomodation and food services and the next biggest spend is on merchandise and apparel. Thus, in France, 24 billion euro is spent on accomodation and food and 16% of Frances tourist income that is 12.7 billion euros/year is spent on merchandise - clothing, souvenirs, gifts etc.

Therefore, attracting tourists by making The Abbey a place to visit, to stay at, eat at and buy merchandise at, will result in accomodation and merchandise sales making it a financially viable proposition. The Abbey has 40 rooms to allow for accomodation and to set up high end retail outlets selling merchandise like French antiques, Persian/Turkish carpets, jewellery, leather goods as well as souvenires. I already have contacts in Turkey for the supply of jewellery, gem stones, carpets, leather wear and apparel.

The Abbey has been neglected for years and urgently needs restoration. I need your government to lend me 1.6 million euros to purchase the abbey and its 25 hectares with 780,000 euro being the purchase price and the balance of the loan to be for the restoration and refurbishment of this historic French monument. Please note the market value was established at 920,000 euro in 2011 when it was previously sold.

With septic, water, power and heating to be upgraded as well as complete new kitchens, laundry and bathroom installations restoration costs will mount. Furnshing the abbey with appliances, beds, seating, linen, cutlery, curtains, carpets, gardening equipment and vehicles will also be of considerable expense let alone the restoration costs involved in repairing, painting, floor sanding, reroofing and resurrecting the church etc.

Please take some time, view the website I have created so that you may better see and understand why your government should help me make this a world class attraction by restoring it and promoting it and France to the world.

I am wanting a temporary loan to buy the property and I will repay all monies borrowed less any grants or taxes your government deems appropriate for the restoration of this historic property for the benefit of France. You can secure the loan in any way you deem fit but I implore you to please understand this is not only for me but France so I would hope that you would waive any taxes and be helping me to minimise costs so this project can be a success.

Please note I have been restoring colonial houses in Brisbane for 30 years so have the experience and vision to bring this to fruition. I am enthralled by English/French history, I am in love with French chateaus, antiques and Persian/Turkish carpets to furnish them and beautiful rose gardens to complement them. I will restore with your help this exceptional property back to original condition and turn it into a stunning tourist attraction. Being close to other outstanding Normandy attractions like Mont St Michel will be a major benefit in attracting more tourists to the area having them stay longer to inject more capital into the region’s economy.

Furthermore, my abilities as a digital film producer will greatly benefit France from the documentary films I intend to produce.

You have probably heard of the successful TV series "Escape to the Chateau". I intend to produce a similar documentary series to be shown worldwide to promote The Abbey and what it has to offer as shown in the website and because of my love for French chateaus I will also produce another documentary on France's chateaus. Both of these documentary's will also highlight France as a country to invest in and to visit as a tourist destination focusing on the attractions, not only the scenic attractions like the chateaus, churches, art etc. but also the wine regions, the French rivierra, the Pyrenees and the Alps. This promotion of France to the world with my documentary's will cost your government nothing but France will benefit considerably financially with increased tourism spend.

I realise contacting you directly is unorthodox but I hope you will see my vision is of sufficient benefit to France for you to help rather then me going thru some government department and my vision and dream being lost in beaurocratic red tape and translation problems.

Please take an interest in saving this 800 year old French antiquity by helping me in any way possible to restore and refurbish this monument to French history, into the 21st century.


Yours sincerely,

Robert West

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