One of my good friends once told me that they weren’t Middlewick moments, they were Jill moments. I think that may be true but I never really noticed them until I moved here to Glastonbury.
If you have stayed with us you may have heard my tale about how we came to live here at Middlewick. For those who haven’t, here it is
Middlewick Moment #1
Buying Holiday Cottages and settling down in the countryside was never part of my big plan. Life, and the car, took a few twists and turns and we ended up along a little lane in Glastonbury.
The beginning of the story is when our son Thomas, a keen golfer, was offered a place at a sporting school called Millfield. We had never heard of the school or been to the area so came out to have a look at what was on offer. It was hard not to fall in love with the school with its incredible array of sports facilities including Olympic size swimming pool, 9-hole golf course, equestrian centre, and sports fields like nowhere else we had seen. After visiting the school we decided to go have a look at the town of Glastonbury, a place we thought was where there was a music festival in a big field once a year.
From the school, we took a windy little lane called Wick Lane thinking it would lead us into the town. It didn’t but a mile or so into it we thought we would see where it would take us. There was the most amazing view of Glastonbury Tor as we were driving so we continued along admiring the scenery. We then drove past a property with a sign that said Mapleleaf Middlewick Holiday Cottages. We had a giggle to think that there were fellow Canadians living in the area.
We did make it into Glastonbury eventually to discover a vibrant little town full of shops and cafes. The streets were full of happy colourful people and I knew I wanted to move here.
So we as a family decided that we would move to Glastonbury. I had no idea how much it would cost to move here so I googled ‘houses for sale in Glastonbury’. We were all surprised to see Mapleleaf Middlewick Holiday Cottages pop up on the screen. We thought, ‘now how strange is that’.
It was a lot of money but we decided to have a look. So we came out to view the property and sure enough, it was a Canadian woman, Judith, who owned Middlewick. Now, this was just the start of the strange coincidences. Judith lived here with her mother, Wendy, which happens to be the same name as my mother. She also had a labradoodle dog named Winston and of course, we have our labradoodle Maggie.
Coincidences aside it wasn’t hard to fall in love with Middlewick and we decided to look into a way of raising the money to buy it. This was the tail end of 2010 when the whole banking world was in crisis and no one was lending anything to anyone. Not holding out a lot of hope, we wrote our business plan and went to the bank to ask for the money. Turned out we really shouldn’t have worried, all 3 banks we approached offered us a loan to buy the business. There was a ‘but’ though.
We had to sell our house in London to use for capital. That was fine as we had planned to do that anyway but it was almost Christmas and the property market was struggling with the bank crisis. Off we went to an estate agent who gave us the same story but he was young and enthusiastic and said he could do something for us. He managed to sell it in 5 days, for more than we wanted, and a cash buyer.
There were more hurdles to get over; planning issues, land claims, and building problems; but we managed to push through them all and finally completed it on my birthday in March 2011.
Now as I write this almost 5 years later, there have been dozens of Middlewick Moments. My friends have been telling me to write them all down so that is what I will do here on the Middlewick blog. Make sure and look out for the next installment.