The island of Quéménès, near France’s northwest coast, is in many ways a desolate place. The waves of the Atlantic Ocean crash against its shores, and bad weather lashes across its treeless land in winter. And at just under a mile long and some seven miles from the mainland, the island could seem to be a daunting place in which to live – let alone run a working farm. However, that’s exactly what one family have done over the past decade.
So what would make someone leave their old life behind to spend years as the only inhabitants of an isolated island? Well, David Cuisnier – who, along with his wife, Soizic, and their two kids, is one of the soon-to-depart current tenants of the island – explained to the BBC, “Coming here was an act of glorious folly. But it turned into the most wonderful adventure. We developed the farm into a successful business. We raised a family. It has been unforgettable.”
This is not the first time that farming has been practiced on the island, though. From 1953, for instance, a farmer called Henri Tassin apparently ran a profitable farm there harvesting seaweed. He had also raised livestock – not unlike the Cuisniers. During this period, the island had been home to 30 people. But by the time the Cuisniers arrived, the island had been abandoned for 25 years.