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Becoming an Expat

Reasons for leaving UK

Here's a forum to talk about all the ins and outs of leaving the UK and launching yourself into the wide blue yonder - selling up, saying goodbyes, all that sort of thing. NB - this is NOT for country-specific issues; please post those on the appropriate country forum.

Postby JayneR » Wed 11 Jan 2006 09:09 GMT

Talking of speed control. We have quite a neat arrangement here in some areas, don't know if they exist elsewhere.

On some stretches of road, especially long ones in (semi-)residential areas, there are sets of traffic lights every so often and sensors somewhere before each set of lights so if you pass one going over the speed limit, the traffic light turns to red to make you stop. There's no hassle involving police who are few and far to find and have better things to do with their time and no fines unless of course you don't stop at the lights and there's one hiding in the bushes somewhere. Quite efficient really.

Have heard of people being fined here for driving round the same roundabout more than once though. :roll:

Getting back to the UK. I was totally intimidated by Stansted airport (on the arrivals side before getting to passport control). Not welcoming/friendly at all - it smacked of "You'd better have a damn good reason for wanting to get into the UK".
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Postby OceanHeart » Wed 22 Mar 2006 02:51 GMT

Well, I read all the posts of this thread..While people are leaving UK, lots of strangers are going to UK too, welcomed or not. I am one of them who have the intention to head to UK, quite hesitated though.
I live in a beautiful city in South East Asia and basically have an above average living condition, work is not bad either, lots of friends here. However, when I realized I could not work out my personal life here, yeah, hate to be still single and always have no sparkle with local guys, I made my mind to immigrate again. Ok, if UK is not good, where is your ideal place to move and why (let's don't mention possible or impossible)? Suggest freely.
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Postby Barquentine » Wed 3 May 2006 21:07 GMT

Reason for leaving the UK: ruined, by John Major. Lost business and house.
Reason for not going back: Tony Blair.
But I will make a special exception: When Major dies, I have promised myself that I will return, to dance on his grave.
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Postby Alan-LaCala » Thu 4 May 2006 07:07 GMT

Reason for leaving the UK: ruined, by John Major


I know nothing of your circumstances, but are you sure you did not have something to do with it as well?

Alan
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Postby Barquentine » Fri 5 May 2006 18:28 GMT

Alan-LaCala wrote:
Reason for leaving the UK: ruined, by John Major


I know nothing of your circumstances, but are you sure you did not have something to do with it as well?

Alan

I had a successful computer company, in business for three years and made a profit every year. Then came John 'stupid' Major, the man who exemplifies Parkinson's Law: sooner or later everyone is promoted to a position they're incompetent in. (Major had been a failure in every post he occupied)
And the great UK recession arrived with him. Remember his 'defence of the pound' putting interest rates up to, what was it, 30%? Something like that.
1000 businesses a week failed, over the next three years. Mine lasted two more years before three of my distributors went bankrupt in one quarter, resulting in nonpayment and my own company failing as a result.
Here in Mexico we started all over again with nothing.
Now after 10 years I have dual nationality, a five bedroom/five bathroom house, a great job as a teacher, part time jobs too, a better climate, better medical care... but I will still dance on Major's grave when the time comes, even if it's in a Zimmer frame. And if Major outlives me, I trust that my children will do that job for me.
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Why so down on London?

Postby harunys » Thu 25 May 2006 10:07 GMT

Having been born in London in the 1950's and growing up in SE of England; I'm surprised that people are so down on London.

Remember London is one of the World's major cities on a par with New York - not some backwater in Wisconsin. There are good reasons why London is so expensive and people from all over the World wish to go there.

Is New York populated exclusively with English speaking white people? If you are bothered by a brown face you don't have to move far outside London where you hardly run into anybody of different race from one year to the next (I know because I live in such a place).

The same goes for some of the other major UK cities.

My father still lives in London - so I know the city reasonably well, and the place has gone from strength to strength over the past 45 years.

I would love to live in London again but can't afford to - however, I much rather it be a place where people from all over the World wish to invest their time and money than the dump I remember it being in the late 1950s early 60s. The problem is that London's success influences the cost of living, population density, traffic... in most of the SE of England.

We should be proud that the UK has a city such as London - it hasn't been a cosy little market town for about a 1000 years.
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why are we leaving uk

Postby Ria » Wed 31 May 2006 19:07 GMT

Hi everyone
We're leaving because it's going like it did during maggies reign,job losses all over,nhs will be non existant their closing hospitals,WHAT FUTURE HAVE MY CHILDREN GOT HERE :?:
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Postby tonyspencer » Wed 7 Jun 2006 18:42 GMT

I've been living in the south of France now for five years, and I used to live in London.

There are few jobs other than government created ones, soon to be £10 a day congestion charge, sky high prices for everything, council tax at £1,500 a year in some boroughs, public transport chaos, traffic chaos.

In central London a parking meter is more per hour than the minimum wage. There's noise, pollution, filth everywhere. Most police are now armed and can shoot to kill on sight.

If you don't live close to one of the few hospitals left, you die, unless you're lucky enough to be picked for the one air ambulance. I waited 7 days for a hernia op here, that would, according to government web pages detailing official waiting times, have taken 197 days for surgery had I lived in North West London.

There are cameras on buses, trains, stations, shops. Cameras to nab you for the congestion charge, for speeding, for jumping red lights and even for parking. The parking tickets and towaways are usually not executed properly according to law.

Commuting on the Tube is a nightmare, nothing runs on time. If like me, you sometimes had to drive because I had too much camera equipment for my job to take on the tube, it took a minimum of an hour and a half for the 14 miles to cross London, and anywhere up to 3 and a half hours, and that was before the congestion charge.

Service and attitude is appalling everywhere, people are impatient and impolite. I came across a web site the other day which proudly displayed the best taunts for German footballers for the forthcoming World Cup!

I'm a city boy by heart, and thought I could never leave London. But after an 18 month trip around the world, came to the conclusion that rip off Britain, and in particular London, is the worst, and I'm chucking in Russian cities into the mix. Tokyo was cheaper than London, despite every survey to the contrary.

Oh, and they introduced a law specifically to get rid of an Iraq protester who's been outside Parliament for 3 years. Talk about nanny state and Big Brother.

So I now live in a sunny small town in the south of France, and I miss just one thing: jazz at Ronnie Scott's (although that is now shut for major refurb by new owners so will probably be ruined).

The rest they can keep.
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Postby Michael1944 » Sun 15 Oct 2006 01:38 GMT

Reading these posts has been most illuminating, Thank God for Canada, not quite England, not quite America, but a great place to live.
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Postby AnnT » Sun 24 Dec 2006 06:43 GMT

Hello everyone, I have just joined you.
I've been reading this thread with interest, seeing all the different points of view.
We were doing quite well in England but thought moving to Australia would be an adventure - grass being greener etc. It wasn't and isn't!
The post from Harunys was refreshing as I am a Londoner too and still love the place warts and all.
England has her faults, but the post from Tony Spencer sounds exactly like this country - except possibly the bit about the 'filth'. As has been said, London is 1,000 years old it's allowed to be a bit filthy, not so a much younger Australia.
We have made many friends during our 30 year journey, plus visited and lived in most of the states. We have a good life too BUT - the main downside of this country is the culture, we still havn't got used to the lack of it. There is always sport (ad nauseum) I suppose, if you like that sort of thing :roll: When you have covered that, sun and sandy beaches what lese is there?


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A view from Canada

Postby Buddyboy » Wed 10 Jan 2007 15:31 GMT

Hi all. My wife and I left the U.K. (London) in 1975 to live west of Toronto, Ontario. After a great life there, we retired in our early fifties to live in Nova Scotia. Why did we leave the U.K.? We were young, saw ourselves pidgeonholed into roughly the same limited lifestyle for the rest of our lives, and were frustrated that the U.K. had joined the E.E.C. losing a good deal of well earned independence.

We never regretted the move to Canada, taking out citizenship here at the very first opportunity. Over the years we returned to the U.K. many times, mainly to visit parents and family in London and on the south coast. It became a progressively more dirty, crime ridden place. There were no smiles from strangers passing by, we tip-toed around dog poop on the sidewalks, everything costed about two to three times what we were used to with less product and abysmal service. I was once standing outside a shop in a shopping centre in East London when an elderly woman passing by about 25 feet away stopped in her tracks. She approached me saying "You are not from around here, are you." When I told her no, I'm from Canada, she replied "I knew it. Nobody here ever smiles and you smiled." My family asked why we didn't visit more often, a difficult question from people you love. I always replied "Because I can spend twice as long for half as much under palm trees."

You can only put comments such as these in perspective by comparing them with your present way of life. I live in a province of Canada known as "The land of no traffic." We enjoy quiet roads with little traffic, for sure. A traffic jam in the city is when you don't get through the first phase of traffic light. We eat out two to three times a week for a fraction of U.K. prices (how about all you can eat east Indian buffet, great food, salads, entrees and desserts, with all the coffee you can drink for about £7 in a good restaurant with friendly, attentive service), it's exceptional if a stranger passes you by even in the city without saying hi or giving a nod. If you stand at the curb, traffic stops to let you cross - I have to caution visitors from the U.K. not to face the road at the curb or the traffic will stop for them - not the law, just courtesy. Petrol and fuel oil is less than half what it costs in the U.K. Cars cost far less. As for the weather, never a problem for us with air conditioning everywhere, well cleared roads in the winter, real seasons.

So, we have lived the London, U.K. experience, the busy Toronto experience (not quite as cheap and far less slow than I have described) and our present more rural experince. In a nutshell, when friends ask "So how was England?" when I returned from my occasional visits, I would answer "My lips are still sore." Why? "From kissing the ground when I got off the plane on arrival back in Canada."

The U.K. is a country with a fabulous history which gave us a greatly appreciated start in life. Its present is sadly drab, debt ridden and squalid. The future looks worse.

Sorry. That's my view from afar.
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Postby Graeme » Thu 11 Jan 2007 01:30 GMT

Interesting post Buddyboy, I know exactly what you mean :)

Graeme
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Postby SSue » Thu 11 Jan 2007 01:50 GMT

I'll second that too.

Money couldn't move me from this place.

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Postby AnnT » Thu 11 Jan 2007 03:59 GMT

Pretty fair post Buddyboy and I have to agree on some things but not others. We have not lived in England for years, so I cannot lay claim to knowing all the answers - BUT one thing I can contradict:
When we returned for 6 weeks in '98 a trip to London was mandatory. It had change so much since '93 that we got lost. In Oxford Street and black woman stopped and seeing our puzzled faces asked "Can I help you love?" Then directed us upstairs with a large smile. Next trying to cross to Harrods, a chap in a bowler hat...yes, and umbrella stopped and told us how to get across the underpass, also with a large smile.
We found that EVERY time we asked for directions no matter what colour or creed, we were helped with such friendliness, that even we were gobsmacked. Unless people have changed radically since '98 you have got that wrong.

:lol:
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Postby justajester » Thu 11 Jan 2007 17:50 GMT

Buddyboy, I have just read your post, and so many of your comments caused me to chuckle. You've been here long enough to call the sidewalks that, instead of pavement! :lol: Have you been to the Canada boards...I don't think i've seen you there? Come on over, and share with us...
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