For young professional couple Luke and Freya Haddon-Smale, the choice to move out of London was always on the cards; it just wasn’t as soon as they imagined. However, with 2020 changing the living priorities of many city dwellers, Luke and Freya fast-tracked their decision to head out of the capital.

After friends recommended the Bicester area, the couple took a drive and found Heyford Park, a growing community of homes and facilities built by Dorchester Living.

“After we moved back from New York, we knew London wasn’t going to be our forever destination. We do love the buzz and energy of London, but we also craved the village feeling and having wide open spaces near us and that’s what we have at Heyford Park.” said Freya.

“It was the easiest decision we’ve ever made. It had everything we were looking for and more. The house we chose sits right on the village green, offers so much space and looks beautiful.”

They bought a four-bedroom home and converted two of the spaces to be respective offices. Having the luxury of shutting the door at the end of the day and switching off from work has been a blessing for the couple, who struggled to find a good work/life balance at their old flat.

As for achieving that balance now, the couple have almost become co-workers and enjoy the “water cooler” moments as much as possible. 

“Each day we have our morning coffee and breakfast at the island bench in the kitchen, then move to our offices and start the day. It’s nice to have someone nearby but not talking over each other on Zoom calls”, Luke adds.

Before the pandemic, the couple had a very different lifestyle in London but the events of last year really helped to shape their living priorities. They knew they wanted a bigger space to work and grow into, ideally in the countryside and with a certain budget in mind.

“Like most young professionals, we didn’t want to be paying someone else’s mortgage and wanted to be practical with our money. At our new home we are paying a significantly lower price on our mortgage, in comparison to what we were paying on rent in London – it’s crazy to sort of be throwing that money away”, said Luke.

And for when the day comes to start the commute back into London, Freya and Luke are only 45 minutes via train into London Marylebone.

Freya commented, “considering it would sometimes take longer to get to our office from Stoke Newington, we’re not too worried”.

Prices at Heyford Park start from £275,000. To secure your new build home in Oxfordshire, please call 01869 238 238 or visit

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