To bring or not to bring - last minute question

Hi All. So I and he who shall remain blameless are in the final throes of chucking our worldly goods (oh sorry I meant packing) ready for Part Un of our move to France next’week. Part Deux is when the fun starts & the “big stuff “ goes over the week after. One bit of the big stuff is causing me a small dilemma . It’s a beautiful solid cast iron blue enamel Scandia 6304 multi fuel stove with solid brass fittings. We used it for a few years here & during a couple of very cold winters it lived up to its maker’s name and kept our small house very Kosi (Gee) indeed. My question is this . Is it worth the hassle of bringing it with us? Our French village house is we’ve been told around 150yrs old. It is 82m2 of living space much of which is open plan. It has double glazing, an electric heating system which looks fairly new but is warm air which doubles as aircon. That’s it. There is a (bottled) gas hob but everything else is electric. We are in the Haut Vallee de L’Aude which I’m told doesn’t get snow (it did get a sprinkling last winter) but can be cold(ish) - and wet - and windy! My daughter & I were there this June and had the heating on the first week - aircon the next! The house looks as if it at one time had chimneys as they’re are still stacks /flues visible on the roof and the chimney seems to have been boarded in in the front bedroom. No sign of it downstairs although the living room is an odd shape with an old beam going across the odd shaped corner where we think the hearth may have been. There’s no garden but a small courtyard so potentially a flue may be run up to roof level through the outside wall although part of it would be visible up the courtyard wall which might detract somewhat from its appeal. We haven’t used the stove for some years since a new “HETAS” minded chimney sweep condemned our 100yr old chimney here despite it having passed all his tests ! The glass in the stove is hazed but intact but as it is over 20yrs old i guess it, along with its ceramic rope seal should be renewed. The rest of it seems sound. It holds sentimental value as despite some rusting /pitting of the enamel around the flue it is still an attractive feature. My late dad bought it for us shortly after the children and I were moved here as we had only storage heaters and it was freezing ! I have no idea if it will meet French regulations or if it would even be possible to connect it. Does anyone have any experience of having brought such an item with them and were they able to get it successfully installed and working please without having to sell body parts to pay for it ? We used to use anthracite in it but the few bits of info I can find about it do say it can be used as a wood burner provided a suitable flue is attached and suitable wood (seasoned hard wood) burned.

It’s 20+ years old… and sentimental value… so, If you’ve got space in the van… what have you got to lose… you can always use it as a garden ornament.

The Stove gives 6kw maximum… putting in a new chimney is going to cost money… also, replacing seals etc in the stove and sourcing/storing fuel… all to be costed.

If extra heat is needed, a portable electric fan radiator is cheap enough… you’re presumably on a good tariff…

Frankly, only you know what you want to do… so think about it, make a decision and live with it… (or without it, if you get my drift… )


You’ll probably be able to get the glass for it cut in France but be warned, it tends to be expensive so if able to get it done in the UK before you leave…
If that is the case, get the rope seal changed at the same time.
I’ve seen old barn conversions that didn’t come with a chimney have outside flues fitted… usually in stainless steel so don’t look unattractive. The alternative is to buy the ‘pot’ interlocking blocks from ground to above the roof (sufficient room for the gaseous emissions to be safely carried away) and line it. Your local ramoneur Chimney sweep) should be able to advise you more capably. Consult your Mairie or neighbours for recommendations.
But yes, essentially, go for it. If you have room bring it with you even if it just sits in the corner unconnected as a ‘room prop’ until such time as funds allow…

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To be honest, if its only 6kw output Its not worth the hassle. I would spend a bit less and buy a new efficient woodburner locally for that satisfying cosy warm backup system for when the inevitable power cut hits you in winter.

If you have space then do bring it, or you may regret it later as it has such a family history.
If, once you have passed a Winter here it doesn’t ‘fit in’ then advertise it for sale and let somone else profit.
Good luck with the move, stressful time but do let us know how everything went :slight_smile:

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Thanks all. I was erring on the side of bringing it but you’ve helped sway the balance and if there’s room it’s coming too. Partly for sentimental reasons - I have little but photos to remember dad - and mum by. Like the idea of the “garden ornament “ too so big thank you for that. It could look quite chic in our little courtyard . I had also been a bit concerned about being “all electric “ the area is known for its ferocious storms and apparently these sometimes cause power outages. I had visions of trying to huddle around the gas hob if the power goes for any length of time. Before you say anything we are used to power outages where we live on an almost weekly basis particularly in winter but our house here has cladding and good insulation in the loft which keeps the heat in. I got so fed up with it going off at mealtimes though that I actually got a portable camping gaz stove!

My house here is central heated by fuel but of course needs electric to run it. I have a small’ back up’ portable petrol heater so that mum won’t freeze. I also have the use of a botttled gas cooker in the garage if needed.
Always good to have some form of alternative just in case !


If you’ve got room there’s no point in not bringing it. Three households I know had unconnected decorative stoves in their homes. It’s now only two, one couple discovered that their’s could be ‘plumbed in’ and now use it to heat their kitchen so it’s both decorative and practical.