The daughter of a sculptor, Marie has been surrounded by art ever since she was born. A native Parisienne, she holds an undergraduate degree in history and art history, with a specialty in iconography and French and Flemish paintings from the 16th to the 18th centuries. She also holds a Master's degree in museology from the Ecole du Louvre and one in Art History from the Sorbonne. She currently works for the French National Art History Institute on special cultural events. Since she loves literature, ballet, theatre, opera, jazz clubs, and classical concerts—she has been playing the piano since she was 9—Paris and its artistic life are a perfect fit.
Alexander got a First in modern history at Oxford and retains an abiding passion for the subject. He has lived and worked – mainly in publishing – in France for over twenty years, first in Paris and now in Normandy, where he is carrying out an eco-friendly restoration on his old fisherman’s cottage in Port-en-Bessin. This small fishing port, noted for its scallops, is situated on the coast just 10 km north of the medieval splendors of Bayeux, and is tucked into the cliffs which separate the sites of the American and British D-Day landing beaches. His knowledge of the Normandy landings is enhanced by the fact that his father was a member of the British commando unit which liberated his adopted town in June ’44, and indeed Alexander has recently published a book on this very subject. His love for the region also led him to study to qualify as an official regional guide, and sharing his enthusiasm for Normandy and its long history has become something of a vocation.
William studied history and art history at Bristol University and did his MA at the Sainsbury Centre for the Visual arts at the University of East Anglia Norwich, specializing in Westminster Abbey. He taught history to university entrance for ten years before marrying and settling in France where he set up his own tour guide business based in Caen, Normandy. In 1991 he became a nationally accredited Guide-conférencier des Monuments Historiques et des Sites, and a Guide-Interprète régional. Since 1994 he has written nine guide books for Pitkin Guides and the French publisher Pro Libris, all on the theme of D-Day and the battle of Normandy: these are sold in English and in French throughout the region and in every museum related to 1944. He has given lectures on Silver Seas cruises and the Silver Cloud II. Off season he teaches English to engineers and lawyers at the University of Caen - and writes. Since 2002 he has been the President of the Franco-British Association in Caen, the city where he intends to age gracefully.