Hatty tells how the surprising decision to leave London was taken.
David and I love London. I’m London “born and bred” and David had actually lived in London longer than anywhere else. We hadn’t planned on moving to the country. We were very involved in our local community in South London and it was a big change to leave our happy city life.
A big change but actually, as it turned out, not a big decision.
The arrival of our daughter Lily was the main catalyst for the move. We regularly took her camping in Dorset and saw a completely different side to her. She loved the outside life. She had space to run around. She delighted in discovering cows and creepy crawlies but, best of all, there was a plethora of big, muddy puddles to jump in. It made Lily very happy and that made us happy too. What’s more, she slept better under the Dorset skies than she ever did in London!
Lily enjoying the outdoor life
We realised we weren’t making the most of what London has to offer. We worked from home and could, in theory, work from anywhere. We didn’t go “out on the town” as much as we once did (the need for babysitters acting as a restraint) and the hassle of travelling on crowded tubes, trains and buses had reduce the appeal of days out in London.
Swanage in Dorset had been a place we regularly escaped to at weekends. We would pitch a tent and enjoy the simple life. Suddenly (and the decision to move was quite a sudden one) it seemed silly to travel back to London on a packed train on a Sunday afternoon when we could stay where we were. Ok, not in a tent perhaps, but we soon found a house we liked.
Our regular visits to Swanage meant we had developed a small network of local friends who gave us good insight into what it was like to live there, so we didn’t feel the need to do a broad location search.
We just went for it and haven’t looked back!