The countryside, boring? Leaving London for village life was the best thing we ever did

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The countryside, boring? Leaving London for village life was the best thing we ever did

From London, Claire relocated to Hertfordshire with her growing family
From London, Claire relocated to Hertfordshire with her growing family Credit: claire irvin

With mounting pressure from her husband, Claire Irvin dreaded the prospect of swapping city life for the countryside – not least the commute. So what changed her mind?

"Only boring people get bored." This mantra for my Seventies upbringing in a Cambridgeshire village, as my parents shooed us outside to "play out" at 9am until dusk, was steadfast. And with endless fields, windy village roads and the playground of a contemporary cul-de-sac as the canvas for our imagination, it was also true.

But as life in the country is increasingly deemed "boring" by grown adults who’ve moved here and regretted it, I wonder if this phrase should now be applied to them.

I should know. I’ve lived (and loved) both town and country. Aged 18, I left home and travelled the world, determined to wring every last drop of fun out of each place I landed in: coast, desert, mountain-top, city. Eventually, I settled in London and into a career as a magazine editor. Life was an exciting whirl of people, parties – oh, and the occasional deadline, too.  

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