• 11 October 2021

A chance meeting with a stranger in a French bar led an expat couple on the path to their new life back in the UK. Joy (75) and Colin (78), who now live in a luxury RoyaleLife bungalow on the Kent coast, had been living in the South of France for 15-years before they began to wonder about returning home.

Joy had been struggling after a fall and Colin was recovering from chronic heart failure that had left him unwell. Although their home near Cannes was lovely, and the couple had made many friends, they wished they could be closer to their son and old friends back in Essex – something that became even more important during the coronavirus pandemic.

While they debated the issue, the couple bumped into a stranger in one of their local bars. He was English and upon hearing about Joy and Colin’s plight, he confided in them about the lonely life he was leading after the loss of his wife, highlighting the importance of having a strong support network and home comforts. No sooner had they said their goodbyes, the couple realised they had made their minds up. It was time to go home.

The couple were determined to find a property back in England that not only met their requirements but would allow them to continue to live within a welcoming community. Like many expats now thinking of returning to the UK, the couple didn’t want to give up on the quality of life they had enjoyed while living abroad. It was then that they discovered RoyaleLife, the leading UK bungalow provider for the over 45s.

Joy said: “We wanted a home that would meet our needs, but that also had the fantastic community focused lifestyle that we loved in France. So, after seeing an advert for RoyaleLife, we made contact immediately and were put in touch with sales and site supervisor Sharon Reach, who suggested the brand new Reculver Rise development in Herne Bay.”

Colin said: “There was a two-bedroomed property she wanted to show us, and we joined a private virtual tour for that very afternoon. Sharon showed every inch of the house, even down to opening every single door and cupboard. There wasn’t anything that we didn’t know. Even the views from the rooms, which overlook the stunning development. We also had a tour of the outside grounds, which are breathtaking.”

Joy added: “We put an offer in and it was accepted – the happiness and relief brought us to tears.”

Sharon said it had been a true pleasure helping Colin and Joy find their new home by the sea. “Reculver Rise is currently in the development stages, but I took the chance and gave them a tour around a home style I knew they would love – and as I predicted, they fell in love with it straight away.” She continued: “As Mr and Mrs Foley were selling their property, we had a short wait for their home to sell and then it was all systems go. 

“We stayed in close contact throughout the whole process, and when they arrived at Reculver – just 12 weeks after their virtual viewing - I greeted them with a bunch of flowers and box of chocolates. It had been quite the journey!”

Since moving, the couple have been getting to know the area and enjoying life’s little pleasures.

Reculver Rise is a stunning development on the Kent coast with panoramic sea views. Residents have access to a range of facilities, including an indoor swimming pool, coffee lounge and tea gardens. Local coastal walks lead directly from the development and there is plenty to do nearby including cycling, fishing, sailing and golf.  Excellent transport links mean Joy and Colin can be in Canterbury in half an hour or even London within 90 minutes if they so desire.

“We love driving out and exploring. We have a little walk. We sit and have a coffee. Just the simple pleasures of life. There are so many lovely places so close,” said Joy.

Robert Bull, CEO of RoyaleLife said: “I can understand Joy and Colin’s dilemma and that of many expats living abroad and wanting to return home in later life. How to find a high quality, affordable home that meets their needs?

 “I’m so glad that we at RoyaleLife have been able to make Colin and Joy’s journey home so easy and comfortable and wish them many happy years making new friends at beautiful Reculver Rise.”

For further information on Reculver Rise visit: https://www.royalelife.com/our-developments/reculver-rise-herne-bay/.

RoyaleLife is giving you the chance to win £100,000! 

Every customer who completes their home purchase between 1st March and 30th November 2021 will be able to enter our prize draw. For details visit The RoyaleLife £100,000 Prize Draw - RoyaleLife. Terms and conditions apply.