For 40 years Jean-Marie Le Pen has ruled one of the most successful and feared ultra-nationalist movements in Europe.
In 2002 he shocked France by winning through to the second round of the presidential election.
But now at 82 years of age, the father of the Front National is ready to step aside and he is backing his daughter Marine to succeed him.
"I didn't take to politics readily," Marine told me. "But then as the daughter of Le Pen, it is probably unavoidable that I entered the fray. Politics swallowed me up."
"Now it is my desire to carry on my father's fight," she says. "I want to strive for what he believed in, what the French people really want. And if I don't do it, I don't think anyone else is capable."
Marine is not lacking in self-confidence. But she is hardly Joan of Arc, the symbol of French sanctity that is the adopted emblem of the FN party.
Invariably she wears jeans and high-heeled shoes. She is a twice-divorced mother of three. She is pro-abortion. She is certainly not the choice of the hard-line Catholics within her party.
But those who meet her agree she is personable and difficult to dislike. Which makes her a formidable politician