Just found out it used to be 6 months before having to return for a period. Now it is based on the validity of the Permanent Resident card. PR card is valid for 5 years, you have to be in Canada
for 2 of those 5 years, so effectively I can be absent from Canada for 3 years without issue.
However my wife and kids are travelling on Canadian Passports, I think I can get my kids British passports but Nichole would take longer because she would have to do a bunch of paperwork etc to prove heritage, her father or grandfather was from UK. However I did read somewhere that as we are a family
, there is a EU law that prevents families being separated and that as I have a UK passport and am entitled to stay in the EU we would be OK.