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Retired Couple In Buxton Living Their Best Years

Posted 23 October 2023 by Helen Christie

After moving to McCarthy Stone’s Devonshire Place development in Buxton, Gerri and Malcolm are filled with renewed confidence and independence…

Gerri, a former officer with Manchester City Council retired in 2011, and Malcolm, an aircraft engineer in the RAF retired in 2009. The couple had embarked on renovating an old house with their family ten years ago, but when the family decided to take on another project in Scotland, Gerri and Malcolm knew it was time for them to move onto the next chapter of their lives together.

After ten years of supporting renovations, the couple knew they wanted to do something less stressful which would give them the opportunity to enjoy the rest of their years.

The couple dreamed of a peaceful retirement with time to spend with family, holidays abroad and hours spent in their lovely garden. Having worked all their lives, they’d saved hard and planned for their retirement, so when they finally reached the crucial milestone, they were over the moon and excited about their next chapter.

Gerri says: “Initially, we never had any intentions of moving, but it became more important to us to futureproof our later years.”

Malcolm adds: “We knew the Buxton area well and were keen to stay here but it wasn’t until one of our friends invited us to come and take a look at the new McCarthy Stone development Devonshire Place, that we realised what we were missing out on! We were sold from the get-go. It was right in the centre of town meaning we could pop to the shops whenever we liked without having to climb in the car, and all the maintenance was taken care of so I could finally put my toolbox away.

“There was also a fantastic atmosphere with lots of friendly couples and people just like us. Every time we visited, they would be on the way to somewhere, catching the bus or having a coffee and a chat in the lounge. They had the right idea, and we could really see ourselves fitting in well! If our friends had not introduced us, we would have ended up with another property and begun the endless task of renovating and decorating all over again, not to mention all the tedious ongoing maintenance involved too.”

The couple haven’t looked back since, and they are now an integral part of the new community there, often volunteering to show other retirees around or attending sales events as advocates for McCarthy Stone.

Gerri continues: “We’re so eager to help others get the very most out of their retirement years. Moving can be such a stress at any age and we’d know having moved 14 times while Malcolm was in the RAF. But we can both hand-on-heart say that this was by far the best decision we ever made, and we only wish we made it sooner.”

Malcolm adds: “Our advice would be not to waste your precious years doing things that make you unhappy. We spend so much of our lives working for others, stressed out on the job, providing for our families etc. We deserve to have the opportunity to have a more relaxed pace of life in retirement, but sometimes that means making a difficult decision that you need to make a change."

The couple used WhatHouse? Award-winning developer McCarthy Stone’s Smooth Move programme which meant all the packing and transporting of their belongings was taken care of for them.

Devonshire Place (McCarthy Stone)

Gerri says: “If our friend hadn’t showed us that there was another way of life that day, and introduced us to Devonshire Place, we would probably still be in our old home which as much as we loved it, we were finding it hard to keep up with the work needed to maintain it. Now we want to be that person for someone else. To show them the alternatives that are out there and that you don’t have to put up with something if you don’t want to. It can be a big life change and it can be daunting, but I think it helps to meet other people who have been in the same position and turned things around for the better, to show that you can too.”

Malcolm adds: “The one topic we always get asked is ‘how did you handle downsizing because the apartments only have one or two bedrooms. What happens to all your stuff?’. Since moving, we’ve found people do tend to get hung up on storage space, and our generation are the worst for this fear. But it’s not been an issue for us at all. Our apartment is very spacious, and we have everything we need. 

He jokes: “It can often be a good excuse for some serial offenders to have a proper clear out and a fresh start! In all seriousness, it's very rewarding that we can help provide peace of mind a level of reassurance to others.”

Malcolm continues: “Safety was a major factor for us too. We love our holidays, so being able to simply lock up our apartments and venture off on holiday was really important to us. We have recently enjoyed a lovely holiday to the South of France and we knew the entire time that our property was being looked after. Our House Manager would often drop us a text to say she’s been in to water our plants and make sure everything was as we left it, and that added touch really makes the difference.”

Gerri adds: “Now we’ve managed to get some time back in our lives, the move has given us a new focus. It’s filled us with such confidence that we are now planning a special holiday to Singapore, where we first met 57 years ago when our parents were stationed out there in the RAF. While we are on that side of the world, we also plan to visit Australia and possibly another country in between.”

Reminiscing on their recent trip to Southern France, the couple even broke up the drive with a stop at a McCarthy Stone development in Dover, and a stayover in Poole on the return leg. Malcolm explains: “Each McCarthy Stone development includes a guest suite, which is great for when you have family visit. But what’s even better, is that we can hire the guest suite for our own benefit like a hotel –knowing that we are staying somewhere safe, with like-minded folk, and not having to worry what to expect on arrival. The guest suites are our home away from home.”

Gerri adds: “The benefit of the guest suites has really given us the nudge to take act on impulse and go where we like, whenever we want. We recently stayed at a development in Stratford for a staycation when we went to the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.”

One of the places the couple love to show visitors around at Devonshire Place is the popular Bistro. Gerri says: “Families are always welcome to visit their loved ones who have moved here, and the Bistro is great for helping to allow for more quality time together including dinner that doesn’t involve having to slave over a hot stove.”

One- and two-bedroom luxury apartments are still available at Devonshire Place, all designed to enable the over-70s to enjoy maximum independence in their retirement years.

The development offers a welcoming communal lounge, perfect for socialising with new neighbours, well-maintained landscaped gardens, and a handy guest suite for when friends and family come to stay.

For those who may require a little additional help, at Devonshire Place there is an estate manager who oversees the day-to-day running of the development, while an experienced team are on hand 24 hours, 365 days a year to provide tailored support packages to suit individual needs.

A range of occupancy options are available at Devonshire Place to make retiring in style more accessible, including the Shared Ownership scheme in conjunction with Homes England. Prices at the development currently start from £165,000 for a one-bedroom apartment and from £225,000 for a two-bedroom.

View more developments currently available from McCarthy Stone


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