Six reasons to escape to the country

10 Sep 20

With their picturesque towns and villages and expanse of coastline, Essex and Suffolk are experiencing an ever-growing surge in popularity with many London buyers looking to relocate.

Caroline Edwards, Country & Village Specialist at Fenn Wright tells us more “The Essex/Suffolk borders are the perfect spot for those who want a beautiful home in a thriving village whilst retaining excellent links for London. East Suffolk is ideal for those wishing to escape the noise and pace of the City with its cosmopolitan coastal towns including Woodbridge, Aldeburgh and Southwold. Similarly, West Suffolk with its gently rolling countryside is growing in popularity for its discreet and exceptionally pretty villages such as Lavenham, Clare and Long Melford.  For those who love horse racing, we are also lucky to enjoy the proximity to Newmarket – the home of British horseracing.

Daily commuters, who may not be so ‘daily’ going forward, are particularly drawn to the Dedham Vale, known as ‘Constable Country’ and classified as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.  Synonymous with the famous paintings of Constable such as ‘The Hay Wain’ at Flatford Mill, the River Stour remains virtually unchanged since the 1800s.

In addition to Dedham, villages such as East Bergholt, Nayland and Stoke by Nayland are very much on the commuters’ wish list especially as Manningtree and Colchester stations feed directly into Liverpool Street.  Once London buyers discover that the City is under an hour’s commute there is little to stop them choosing our area over the more expensive counties such as Surrey, Sussex and Berkshire.  Value for money, accessibility, pretty and inclusive villages, beautiful and gentle countryside with an excellent network of walks, the coastline and quality of life are just a few of the reasons that add to the ever growing appeal of our area.  There is literally something for every taste and budget”

Lion House is a beautifully presented 4 bedroom village house occupying one of Suffolk’s most sought after addresses on Long Melford’s picturesque green.  There is a parking area and fully enclosed south west facing garden with a range of small outbuildings.  On the market with our Sudbury office, please contact 01787 327000 for more information.

Staying connected

For those worried about losing that connection with London, there is a good rail network offering regular services into Liverpool Street as well as the cities of Chelmsford, Norwich and Cambridge.  The A12 also provides access to Bury St Edmunds, Ipswich and Colchester.  Many villages now have fibre broadband making working from home a possibility.


Surrounded by so much agricultural land, it is no surprise that there is a strong focus on local and organic produce, something which is supported by many local pubs and restaurants.  Suffolk is part of an initiative called ‘Creating the Greenest County’, a partnership working with local communities and businesses to reduce energy consumption, adapt to climate change and protect and enhance the natural environment.


Comparatively, large country houses can be purchased for considerably less than those of a similar size in London or in other big towns or cities across the UK.  The cost of living in Essex is significantly lower than in some of its rival Home Counties such as Surrey, for example.

The Old Rectory in Little Bromley is a Grade II listed 8 bedroom house of special architectural and/or historic interest and is centrally located within its grounds surrounded by mature and well stocked gardens amounting to 1.4 Acres.  Multiple offers have been received on this property which generated considerable interest leading to a number of buyers urgently seeking a property similar to this.  If you would like a market appraisal, please contact us on 01206 245899.

Quality of life

Living in the country offers a more relaxed pace of life with less noise and air pollution and lower crime rates.  Essex boasts several highly regarded schools such as Felsted School, New Hall School, Colchester County High School for Girls and Colchester Royal Grammar School.  Whilst Suffolk is home to Framlingham College, Farlingaye High School, Royal Hospital School and Ipswich School – to name but a few!  There is also a wide range of primary and prep schools as well as colleges including the universities of Essex and Suffolk.


As well as many rural properties being large in scale, they also come with an abundance of outside space offering fantastic countryside views and giving a real sense of freedom.  Surprisingly, more than 70% of Essex is actually rural and along with Suffolk, there are over 400 miles of coastline to explore, making it ideal for walkers, watersports enthusiasts and seafood lovers alike.

Community spirit

Ideal for parents raising young families or those looking to downsize, there is a strong sense of local community in country villages, market towns and rural areas.  The East Coast offers plenty of clubs and organisations so whether you are interested in pursuing a love of art, photography, sports, sailing, history or gardening, there really is something for everyone.

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*The property in the main image is Rochfords in Wormingford, a Grade ll listed 7 bedroom property which has just gone under offer.  More details can be found here.