So it turns out that missionaires are regarded as self-employed in the UK for the purposes of National Insurance. Thus it was that in May, following advice received by the mission and transmitted to us, I registered Mrs Davey and myself as self-employed on the UK Government website.
(In France pastors, priests, etc are regarded as employed, and their employer is God. Or so I am told.)
On my return from the UK I found :
A) A letter from Newcastle saying that my name and title were different from on their records. Please confirm my forename(s) and title.
B) Tax assessments to fill in for 2010 - 2013 to return by September. (I flicked through them. I am already baffled.)
C) A late-tax-return penalty notice of £200 for the tax return for 2008.
So I phoned them up. They stopped sending tax returns in 2007 because we have no UK income and we pay tax in France.
I have until 3 July to appeal the penalty.
So I am sending it off today.
Anyway apparently where there is no income there's no tax liability and where there's no tax liability there's no penalty.
So we should be OK.