Holdenhurst Interview: It feels a little like being on holiday!

Holdenhurst Interview: It feels a little like being on holiday!

Now that Holdenhurst is open we wanted to catch up with some of our new tenants to see how they are settling in. Gill, 67, & Colm, 71, were two of the first residents to move in when the scheme opened in April.

Where did you live before?

“We previously lived in Boreham, near Chelmsford, Essex, before moving to Broad Oak in 2006 to be closer to our daughter in Lewes.”

Having settled in they enjoyed 12 years in the village, before deciding to move closer to Heathfield town centre. They reasoned that if they were unable to drive, living close to town would be a much more practical option. However, their bungalow was on a steep hill with 12 steps to access the property.

What prompted you to move again?

“Colm had been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, so were thinking carefully about access to the bungalow in the future. During the lockdown, we took a daily walk and came across the Holdenhurst development on Mill Road. We watched the progress as it was being built and realised that it could be a great option for us.”

Why did you choose Holdenhurst?

“It’s a lovely building and is so practical for the future. If can be hard to manage on your own, and we’ve seen other families struggle with financial or physical stress. We don’t want that.

We chose a first-floor flat at the front of the building. So that even if we can’t go out, we can still watch the world go by. We can walk to town, and it’s only half an hour by bus to Tunbridge Wells for shopping or Eastbourne for the coast. We can even see the sea from our back bedroom window!”

Friends at Holdenhurst First Meeting
The first Friends at Holdenhurst meeting

Have you made new friends at Holdenhurst?

“By coincidence, our neighbours of 4 years moved in upstairs! The same flat directly above us. We didn’t realise that we were both considering a move, and here we all are! Aside from that, it’s lovely to meet new people. We’ve met people who are local, from Horam and the surrounding area, and also a lady who’s moved down from the North West to be closer to family. It’s nice to pop along for a coffee and a chat.”

What are you enjoying about the new development?   

“It feels a little like being on holiday! Lunch is great and included, we had a beautiful Carbonara yesterday. The community is starting to develop, with coffees, wine evenings, and barbeques for the Platinum Jubilee.

There have even been furniture swaps; often people are downsizing to move here and it’s a great way to help each other out if somebody needs something.”

What are you looking forward to in the future?

“It’s good to be able to share local knowledge with other new tenants and get to know people. Plus, when the winter nights come and it’s slippery outside we can still socialise here. We’ve started a new group, Friends at Holdenhurst, to start to organise events.

I used to enjoy Gardening and there are some raised planters we will be able to use. But I’m also enjoying taking things easy and letting someone else mow the lawn!”


Building a friendly community

Holdenhurst is a supportive, vibrant and like-minded community. You can get involved as much or as little as you wish. For an informal chat to see if Holdenhurst might be right for you, call us on 01435 898380 or email us at holdenhurst@abbsd.co.uk