Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Location, Location, Location

After much searching, hoping, and praying, we seem to have found our next home. We plan to move from Durham to within striking distance of London in January as my teaching at Westminster Theological Centre increases and my teaching at Durham University decreases.

We really enjoy our lifestyle in Durham — walking to everything we need, relatively slow pace, a garden for Ellie (and her parents), and spaces for wandering around. Such a thing is hardly available in London proper, but head about 20 miles north and such things are quite attainable, and even somewhere in the vicinity of financially viable.

So here's the house we are hoping to make our home in a couple of months. It's in Welwyn Garden City (explore the Google map of the area), a "new town" in Hertfordshire. Unlike most towns in Britain that have an ancient pedigree, Welwyn Garden was designed and built in the 1920s as a model lower-density urban community (our house is much newer). It's beautifully done with public rose gardens running along the main boulevards and a central fountain. The train station, with good access to London, is integrated into the main shopping area in the center of town. We're just 1/4 mile from all of this, so both commuting to London and shopping with two kids in tow should be as painless as such things can possibly be.

There are lots of toddler activities around and good schools, should we be there long enough to need one. There's also a good church within a few blocks, which we visited during our last family time in the area. There's a big park about a mile south of us, with lakes and boats. There's a big wood for exploring about a mile north of us.

Unfortunately, it wasn't possible for us to view the house before paying our administrative fee to pull it off the market and begin the referencing process. But we had a kind friend volunteer to take a look and she gave us the thumbs up. We know the town and neighborhood fairly well, so that was enough for us to commit. Just in case we've misjudged, it's a good thing we're only bound for 6 months!

It's nice to have an idea of what we're moving to, so we won't dwell too much on all we love about Durham and the great friends we'll be leaving behind. Fortunately, I'll still be coming up to Durham regularly for teaching, and having a place to crash within reach of London means we'll probably never run short of visitors!

Here are pictures of the kitchen and back garden. Looking good!

Assuming the estate agent decides we're a good risk, it looks like we might be able to call this "home".


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is Rhonda Walls's daughter Rebecca. The one who lives in England. You will live 63.9 mile from us after you move. Thats cool. Congrats on the baby.

10:10 PM  

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