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Living on my own with dog and want to move but do not know where to move.

(19 Posts)
undecided Tue 10-Mar-20 18:00:41

I livine on my own with my dog and want to move but don't know where to move to. I have no ties in the area (besides a few friends) and my grown up children live south of London - but I do not want to live next door to any of them, no matter how much I love them. Been thinking lately of moving to the coast but as I have no connections nor know anyone who lives there not sure it is a good move. I am also not sure whether I would miss London life and having everything on my doorstep. Any advice, experiences or opinions?????

rosenoir Tue 10-Mar-20 18:17:39

Are you renting or buying?

Either way I would rent for 6 months in an area you fancy to see if you like it. Village may be better as they often have a lot of community events where you can get to know other people.

Dog walkers seem to be a friendly bunch that speak to each other.

Hetty58 Tue 10-Mar-20 18:19:53

I'd want to be somewhere near a few shops and decent transport links e.g. a train route to London. I wouldn't want to rely on driving or cabs. Visitors find it difficult if you're too remote.

My parents retired to the coast but rarely went to the beach. The town was lively, noisy and packed (so parking problems and benches occupied) with holiday people in the summer months, but somewhat bleak, exposed and chilly in the winter, when several shops were closed. Locals were friendly, though, all dog walkers said hello/good morning.

Healthcare was also problematic (loads of retired folk there) and the hospital was an hour's drive away. There were only private dentists available.

Make a list of all the local or London facilities you enjoy (shops, healthcare, parks, theatre, cinema, restaurant, pool, clubs etc. - then see what's available in areas you fancy.

kaycee Tue 10-Mar-20 18:57:59

Why not plan a few days visit to a place you fancy. Lots of hotels are now dog friendly. That would give you a chance to have a look round and get a feel for the place. I understand you would miss London. We moved to Suffolk 5 years ago from Kent and I do miss the proximately to shopping and London but the compensations outweigh the downside. We've made friends - joined U3A and feel really connected to the community. Good luck.

JuliaM Tue 10-Mar-20 19:05:03

One lesson learned elderly Fathers situation is to never move to a remote location in old age. He was in his 60s and fairly fit and active when he left the city and moved out to a small hamlet with very little amenities. His problems started when he could no longer drive, the nearest medical practice was run on a part time basis and there were no foot paths along the busy main road to get there. The small village shop closed down, and the large supermarkets or even a takeaway service refused to deliver to the area. Bus services and Taxi firms likewise. We helped him by running his erands and delivering a weekly shop a 30 mile round trip. When he got to the stage that he needed a care service daily, again there was nothing covering the area, and we had no choice but to persuade him to move into a care centre, after he suffered a couple of nasty falls. Wherever you choose,gowith the thoughts of what services are available, and how you would manage later in life. Living within shouting distance of another human being is priceless when you need help and are living alone,as it living in an area where good services and amenities are available closeby.

Charleygirl5 Tue 10-Mar-20 19:05:57

Do you make good use of London transport? You would definitely miss it, one reason why I am still here. My local hospital is 2 miles away. a friend who moved has to travel 80 miles- no mean feat.

I have my dentist, optician, hairdresser, and bank a short bus ride away- my GP is marginally further but I do not want to move.

If you have spent a long time in London with all of its facilities, you would really miss it, even if you do not use them, they are there.

Dec46 Tue 10-Mar-20 19:10:17

My advice would be never underestimate the value of having friends nearby especially as you get older.
Also make sure that if you do move you are near amenities and good local transport.
Where I live a lot of Rental Properties don't allow pets so that can be difficult to do if you decide to do that for a time to get to know the area. Also,in this area, few Apartments to buy allow pets to be kept in them.
Sorry if this seems negative but I'm speaking from personal experience.Moving with a partner is very different to moving alone.Wishing you a happy life whatever you decide to do.

Ilovecheese Tue 10-Mar-20 19:10:18

Absolutely agree with Charleygirl5 about the facilities in London. The city is also second to none for ease of transport, culture and entertainment.
Think about the choice of places to visit, often for free, on a rainy Sunday in London, then compare them to a rainy Sunday in winter in a holiday resort or small village.

sodapop Tue 10-Mar-20 19:53:21

Not sure why you want or need to move undecided I loved living on the coast and its one of the things I really miss in France. Great for dog walking etc. I'm not sure though how much you would miss city living, seaside towns tend to be very quiet in the winter.
It would be a good idea to rent for a few months as rosenoir said. I hope you find somewhere nice to settle.

undecided Tue 10-Mar-20 20:59:21

Thank you all so much for your thoughts - a lot of your ideas I had not given so much consideration to before. Renting for a bit is a very good idea and if I do move that is what I would do for a bit and definitely do not want to be isolated, so it would be in a more central area. Still more things to think about. Thanks.

SunnySusie Tue 10-Mar-20 20:59:40

What about Eastbourne undecided? I know its almost a cliche that Eastbourne is a retirement haven, but we have friends there and they do seem to enjoy an awful lot of facilities, clubs and entertainments, including two branches of U3A and three theatres. Our friends live just off the sea front with its lovely prom and can walk directly onto a beautiful cliff top path with superb views. Eastbourne has a hospital and a half hourly train service into London Victoria taking about an hour and a half. In recent years the town has grown to about 100,000 half of whom are under 60, so its by no means all elderly people. We have visited summer and winter and it doesnt seem to suffer from that forlorn deserted feeling in the winter months like so many seaside places.

DoraMarr Tue 10-Mar-20 23:38:22

Why do you want to move? It would help if you could list all the reasons why. If it is for financial reasons, you need to factor in the costs of moving. You do not say if you are renting or if you own your home, and wether you have a mortgage or not. These are important factors. I agree with others that it would be a good idea to visit some seaside towns out of season to see if you would enjoy living there.

Franbern Wed 11-Mar-20 15:41:19

Having lived the greater part of my 78 years in London (okay on the suburbs) I moved a few months back to Weston super Mare. Did have one of my daughters there (but also left another one near to where I had lived in London).
It was a large step and, I knew, was a óne way move.
Cannot speak highly enough of the success this has been. The flat I moved into is very close to town centre, town is small. Joined U3A and have so many groups on so many different subjects to choose from to attend as often as I wish AND, all so very close to me.
I mainly use a mobility scooter and everything I can get to within five to ten minutes.
Have given up my Freedom Pass - but still have local authority bus pass, so the only difference will be the few occasions I might wish to use the London underground - okay I will pay for that now.
Would say I did know WsM having been visiting my daughter, etc for the past 20 years - but am so very pleased I made this move. In many ways it is so nice being 'new' here, and not having people stop me in the street (usually who I do not remember), from the past.
I am really looking forward to living by the coast as the weather gets better - and the air is so fresh and lovely.
Do your research -take your time -and go for it.

M0nica Wed 11-Mar-20 15:48:52

The one factor in life that kills most elderly people is loneliness.

Before you look any house prices, amenities, transport etc, visit or research your possible location to see what sort of events and groups exist that you could join in order to build up a social circle, have places to go to see people and so on.

Thirty five years ago my parents rejected several towns they liked because they couldn't find enough things happeneing there that interested them. When they finally settled, within weeks they belonged to four or five different groups and their retirement was full of enjoyment for the rest of their lives.

A close friend made a move that everyone said was unwise, advised her to rent before she bought, but she ploughed ahead. She then discovered she hated the town and was isolated and lonely and died prematurely.

Grandmafrench Wed 11-Mar-20 16:25:57

undecided you don't say why you want to move. Maybe you don't actually know ; perhaps you suddenly feel restless and want a new challenge somewhere else but the choice you have is too much to make an easy decision. I'd have to sit down and seriously make a list, or lists. Sometimes it's the only way to focus and collect together all the thoughts that spin in your head when you try to make a difficult decision. In such a list you could note all the things you like about where you are and the flat; what you don't like; what you would miss if you moved; what your looking for which you feel would improve on your current lifestyle, what you definitely don't want (as when you said you don't want to live too near your children), what is very important to you, and anything else you think would help you clear your thoughts. As other posters have said, don't move anywhere where you don't have easy healthcare, transport, lovely places to be out and about and walk your dog, opportunities to make new friends and follow new interests. Isolation somewhere relatively small and out of the way, I feel for a single person, would be a big mistake. It interested me to read what Franbern and SunnySusie said - I was brought up in Weston-super-Mare but have not visited since my youth!. I also lived many years and more recently very close to Eastbourne. To hold on to links with London and family, it would be ideal, you have an excellent rail service and buses from Eastbourne, wonderful coastal and downland walks, theatres, cinemas, many restaurants, clubs and associations, a local hospital and others very close, as in Brighton and Hastings. And, it might be the place in the UK where currently the highest numbers of elderly people live, but it supports a very mixed community and provides almost every amenity you could wish for at any age and year round. Make that list and if you're still not sure, then perhaps sit tight until your ideas get clearer. But if it convinces you that you should move, then maybe go on some trips and get to know somewhere that takes your fancy. Lots to look forward to smile

Chardy Wed 11-Mar-20 16:40:50

I moved back to the South Coast, though to a different area some years ago, in preparation for retirement, as I wanted to be near the sea. Family live inside M25 south of London.
I knew I wouldn't always have a car, so walking distance from shops, near train station and bus stops, near doctor's, not too far from hospital were important. I wanted a town with some cultural activities and access to evening-class-type groups. I had a cat, and have since got a dog, and have a vet's with extensive facilities nearby. Decent mobile phone coverage and wifi were on the list too.
So I live in a seaside town with all I need for my dotage. Since I moved delivery to your door has become much more common, supermarket shop, takeaway food, uncooked ready meal and fresh vegetable delivery.

Eloethan Wed 11-Mar-20 16:52:33

My opinion is that if you are worried you might miss London, it is probably better to move within a reasonable travelling distance of it - maybe an hour's train ride away so you can enjoy a day trip when you feel you need it.

I would choose somewhere on the south coast because that part of the country has less rain and more sun. My personal preference would be Eastbourne, which is well kept, clean and has many amenities - theatres, cinemas, shops, restaurants, etc, etc. The coastline and the Downs are beautiful (lovely for walks with your dog). It is also fairly accessible for south and central London.and there are some nice nearby towns - Worthing, Hastings, Lewes, Brighton. I have some friends from choir who moved from London to Eastbourne about three years ago and they love it.

I've just read this thread properly and notice that Sunny Susie has already mentioned Eastbourne.- sorry if I've repeated some of the points she makes.

Like others, I would warn you not to move to a village or remote area with few amenities - especially transport. Where my Mum lives, there are few amenities - and they are becoming fewer as each year passes.

Grannyjay Wed 11-Mar-20 17:03:55

For what it would cost to move if you are buying you could stay where you are but spend what you have saved by not moving on weeks by the coast when you want to escape.

ValerieF Wed 11-Mar-20 18:14:45

My 2p. Like others ask, why do you want to move? If you are living in an area that is getting you down; crime, violence, feeling of being unsafe then yes I think you should consider a move. IF it is just because you are restless then I think you need to find other things to do which don't involve the upheaval of a full move. Again as others have said, days away possibly.

Not knowing your financial situation this might not be possible? I would not decide on a whim though. Grass and greener and all that.

I would take my time and look at what is available, visit other places first and foremost. Sometimes you know yourself which place appeals to you the most bearing in mind that a complete change will mean a lot of effort to make new friends (although having a dog generally gets you talking to others)

I wish you luck as I know exactly what you mean. Am always thinking of things I would like to do, places I would like to move to. But as I live in a reasonably nice area, on the coast and my ideal is a little Midsomer type village, I think I will just stay put and visit these places as often as I can. I do actually LOVE visiting London and other cities too.