For a Brit abroad it is true that Normandy in Northern France does feel familiar not only with England, but also rural Ireland.

Geographically of course the land is ever likely to be similar. In gobal terms Southern England, Eire and Northern France are close neighbours sitting on the same lines of latitude, seperated by relatively narrow bodies of water. Historically too there are good reasons why we should think we are all the same under the skin.

Celtic Cross

As late as 16000BC stone-age man could walk from Kerry to Caen without getting his feet wet and it wasn’t until 6100BC that Britain and France finally separated and Britain became an Island. More importantly Ireland, Britain and France have a common Celtic background. Just how a developing culture can hop across two seas and a land mass from France to Ireland is thought to be explained by Trans-cultural diffusion; a result of, migration, war, slavery, intermarriage or word of mouth. Still, despite the slightly dubious notion of how it came about, being of Celtic heritage is not unlike being a left handed Man Utd supporter; not immediately obvious, but an indelible part of shared inner psyche.