Sizing Down in Surrey

Lesley Fry, 74, recently moved from the suburbs of Canterbury to Cranleigh, a village set at the foot of the North Downs in the Surrey Hills. Lesley downsized from a four-bedroom detached house, to a brand-new two-bedroom terrace in Leighwood Fields, and she couldn’t be happier.

Lesley and her son both made the move to Cranleigh earlier this year to be closer to her daughter who lives in a nearby rural village. Lesley’s son purchased a property south of the village, while her daughter and family live a couple of miles in the other direction. She says:

“I am perfectly placed equidistantly between my son and daughter, close enough to help and support but far enough away to refrain from interfering.”

Lesley’s husband passed away three years ago and she no longer needed to live in such a large house. She looked at plenty of properties around south Surrey before finding the Berkeley scheme at Leighwood Fields. Lesley had never considered buying a home off plan before but when she contacted Berkley homes and discovered the benefits she was completely sold on the idea. She says:

“I looked high and low for the perfect house after spending lockdown in pretty grim isolation. The Berkeley properties were a cut above the rest. I realised that when I viewed the show home but became even more apparent now I have moved in. The finish is far superior to the other properties I viewed.”

Lesley has settled into life in Leighwood Fields with her cockapoo, Leo. The pair of them love Cranleigh for its varied countryside. Lesley muses:

“I moved in here on 28th April which has allowed me the summer to get to know the area. I love nothing more than taking Leo out to the Surrey Hills, onto the Downslink which is very close to home, or just on the local footpaths or wandering into the village. Cranleigh is a delightful village to live in, with every shop you would need from little delis to a big Sainsbury’s. We have a good selection of restaurants and in the area, there are plenty of idyllic country pubs which I have visited or spied.”

Occupation at Leighwood Fields is nearing 100 and with a population of 11,000 in Cranleigh, the biggest village in England,  Lesley has enjoyed making new friends and acquaintances. She comments:

“My neighbours in Leighwood Fields are delightful, I feel very at home here already. Cranleigh is such a friendly place, people stop and chat. Having the dog definitely helps – he is always happy to be stroked and wag his tail which is a good conversation starter. I have also joined the local University of the Third Age which has allowed me to meet so many new friends and now I am busy most days with one thing or another.”

Cranleigh also has excellent communal facilities, Lesley goes on to say:
“I am a regular swimmer at the Leisure Centre which is conveniently situated within the sports complex in the village. There are playing fields here also so I am often at the centre watching my grandchildren running around with a football. My grandson goes to the local school, so he comes over regularly for tea or a sleepover, I just can’t help but spoil them when they come to visit.”

When asked if Lesley would recommend this development to friends and family she says:

“Absolutely I would, this is a wonderful place to live and Berkeley has been so helpful and available to deal with any issues that have arisen since my move. This phase is almost complete but there is another phase coming. And once that is finished, we are going to have a footpath that goes right into a new sixty acre country park which has been gifted to the village by a local benefactor – I am looking forward to it opening. Honestly apart from the fact I no longer have a garage to store my junk – which is a good thing as it has meant I had to get rid of it – my new house is perfect. I have French doors that I can throw open which makes the garden feel like I have an extra room. It is just perfect.”

There are several three and four-bedroom houses under construction which will be ready for occupation in Spring 2023. A further phase of homes at Leighwood Fields is launching on the 21st of January, 2023 with two, three, and four-bedroom homes available.  

Residents have access to a large range of nature on their doorstep, including ancient woodlands, a community orchard, village green and a village pond. 

Prices for the two to four-bedroom homes at Leighwood Fields currently start from £465,000. Find out more about Leighwood Fields here, or to book an appointment, call 01483 610 997.