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New Beginnings For The Luxfords At Southborough Gate

Posted 7 September 2021 by Keith Osborne

The Luxfords are enjoying a low-maintenance new home and active social life at McCarthy Stone’s Southborough Gate...

New beginnings are exciting no matter what stage in life you are at, as Brian and Margaret Luxford discovered when they found themselves sat on garden furniture in the lounge of their brand new apartment at McCarthy Stone’s Southborough Gate Retirement Living development in Southborough.

The couple have downsized from a three-bedroom semi-detached house in nearby Tunbridge Wells where they had lived for 51 years, as Brian Luxford explained: “We were sensible enough to realise, at the age of 70-something, that one day we would need to move somewhere where we could still enjoy our independence but where we would also have help on hand if we needed it at any time in the future. We are all too aware of others who left it too late to make this kind of move and the impact it can have on people.

“We toyed with the idea for a while before we looked at McCarthy Stone. We were aware of the McCarthy Stone Retirement Living Plus development in Tunbridge Wells – The Dairy – then we saw the Southborough Gate Retirement Living development being built at Pinewood Gardens and it ticked all our boxes. We reserved an apartment – a very sunny south-facing apartment – and within three months of putting our property on the market, we had moved in.

“You certainly accumulate a lot of things in 51 years! We decided to dispense with more or less everything and start again. Margaret was very clear that she wanted a new house! It’s an exciting part of the move – choosing new furniture and making the apartment your own. For a few weeks we were sat on garden chairs while we were waiting for deliveries to arrive and we had to make do, but of course we got there in the end and we now feel so at home.”

Ordinarily, the couple lead an active social life and have enjoyed forming bonds with their new neighbours. “We were the third people to move in,” Margaret explained. “And it’s been good to have been part of the development since those early days. As people have moved in, acquaintances have been made and now there’s an established community of good friends. It’s great for companionship and we’ve had good fun getting together with everyone.

“Most Sundays we would all meet-up in the lounge and watch a film – although due to the cycle of lockdowns and restrictions over the last year we have had to do things a little differently at times. We make good use of the garden here and there are coffee mornings and other events that will hopefully resume soon.

“When we were living in the old house, there would be days when I wouldn’t see anyone if Brian was at work. Now he’s lucky if I’m still in when he gets back from the office! I never used to be a very outgoing person but living here has changed me completely.”

Southborough GateThe Southborough location also suits Brian and Margaret, not least because part-time chartered accountant Brian works locally. “I really enjoy my job and it’s great that my office is just a five-minute stroll down the road. When I’m not working, we walk a lot. There are some lovely walks around here. Southborough Common is a particularly beautiful spot and has a stunning lake.

“In normal times, we love to go out and eat, travel to Eastbourne and walk around the front or have a night at the theatre in Tunbridge Wells. And of course, we enjoy spending time with the family. Our son and daughter and their families have been very supportive of our move and our new lifestyle.”

As Margaret explained the couple were looking forward to spending more time with their loved ones as soon as restrictions lifted. “We’re a close family. I was childminder to some of the grandchildren to help our son and daughter out, and I used to take the little ones to their clubs – to Brownies, Ballet or wherever they needed to go. We did talk over FaceTime, but I missed the cuddles. I used to see them every day, so I missed that contact with them.

“We’re looking forward to going on holiday together. We’ve booked to go away with our daughter and her family for a few days. It will be good to finally be able to enjoy a getaway and some quality time with the grandchildren.

“That said, we have felt very safe here during the pandemic. McCarthy Stone have been very good at keeping us informed on the latest guidance and regulations and we’ve fortunately not had any Covid cases at Southborough Gate. They’ve kept us safe and we’ve been checking-in on our neighbours and looking out for each other – it’s what you do for your friends.”

McCarthy Stone’s Southborough Gate development comprises a selection of one- and two-bedroom luxury Retirement Living apartments, exclusively designed for people aged 60 and over. The new community features a homeowners’ lounge, landscaped gardens, and a hotel-style guest suite for visiting friends and family. A house manager takes care of the day-to-day running of the development.

Prices at Southborough Gate currently start from £345,000 for a one-bedroom apartment and from £425,000 for a two bedroom apartment. Retirees in Southborough can also to choose from a range of flexible retirement living solutions to suit them and their personal circumstances, whether they prefer to purchase outright, rent, or take advantage of a part buy, part rent option. Find out more about Southborough Gate from McCarthy Stone.


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