On Saturday, Sam and I celebrated our 1 year in York anniversary. Prior to that, I’d been living in London since 2011 and Sam had been living in London for 12 years before our move. You can read my entire post on why we left London here. (Sam also guest posted on his leaving London thoughts).
And to be honest, I’m so happy with that decision. I’m head over heels with York. It’s one of the best places that I’ve ever lived. There’s always something going on in the city, the food is great, you’re extremely close to some beautiful bits of nature and you can hop on a train and be in London or Manchester in less than 2 hours (or Leeds in about 25 minutes).
Whilst I’d love to say that York will be our forever home, rental prices are fairly reasonable in York, but buying a house is ever approaching Southern prices. So realistically Sam and I won’t be here in York and we’ll have to say goodbye to this city that I’ve rapidly fallen in love with. (York has now been listed as one of the most expensive cities in Britain to buy a house in, sadly – houses cost well over 6+ times the national buyer’s earnings.)
Leaving London allowed Sam and I both more scope to explore our own interests. It allowed Sam the opportunity to expand his amazing photography business – both his production and wedding shots are becoming insanely beautiful. (His work has now been featured in: The Hollywood Reporter, The Guardian, The Independent, The Financial Times, The Evening Standard, The Stage, What’s On Stage and Time Out.) And that probably never would have happened had we been struggling to pay our London rent at the same time. It’s allowed me to find a job in York that wasn’t running me into the ground like my London position was; it’s given me the ability to follow my dreams as a doula and I’ve been able to spend the money that I’m saving on rent to travel more.
We know our neighbours and have excellent friendly relationships with them. One even gave us a gift for Harold. (Our neighbours actively avoided us in London.) I can walk and cycle to work. I see historic sites every day. I have access to absolutely incredible food and coffee, and a great sourdough focused bakery is on the end of out street. A 10 minute run down the road and we’re out in glorious Yorkshire countryside. When I see women from my yoga class out and about in town, they smile and wave. (Have I sold you on York yet?)
All in all, it’s been a really great decision and I haven’t ever regretted it. Honestly, I don’t really miss London very much. This past year has been one big adventure and I can’t wait to see what else the future will bring.
This successful move makes me confident that even if York isn’t our forever home, we’ll be able to build our community, to find like-minded people and pursue our interests no matter where we move.
If you’d like to read more about York, I have a whole York tab above! But for some specific posts that might interest you, I’d recommend: