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Anyone relocated from UK to Melbourne?

(11 Posts)
ElleRaiser Sun 13-Sep-09 21:51:32

Hoping some of you lovely Aussie MNers might have some tips/encouragement for me... After years of umming and ahhing, DH and I have finally agreed to - in a year or so - move back to Australia (I am Aussie, he is not). It feels good to have a concrete decision, finally, but - truth be told - I am terrified. I have not lived in Melbourne for ten years, do not even know where to begin with regards to good places to live now that we have one DC, and remember the job market there as very tough. There is so much I will miss here, I fear it will take a very long time for me to adjust... How did you get through this?

savoycabbage Mon 14-Sep-09 08:59:31

Hi, there are quite a lot of Melbourne-dwellers on MN. I have only been here for 8 months so I don't know much. Everyone on here was really helpful when we came over, telling me about schools and transport and different areas. It was all we had to go on as we had no family here.

beatiebow Mon 14-Sep-09 09:16:29

My brother has recently moved to Melbourne from London (but originally came from down under-not Melbourne though). He seemed to get a job pretty quicky-just took a few weeks. He had already bought some land before moving and his house is now almost built. They seem to have settled in fine, their child is not at kindy yet (he has just turned four I think) but they have a cheap creche at the gym which they use regularly!

esselle Tue 15-Sep-09 07:16:37

Hi Elle.

I am in Melbourne, an Aussie, married to a pom and moved back here after 10yrs in London.

We moved back here in May 2007 after selling up everything we owned - and thankfully right before the recession. I was pregnant and our DD was almost 3yo.

I had never lived in Melb, I'm from Sth Aust so I have had to get used to a new city. We chose Melb as Dh was able to line up a job here before we moved and it is relatively close to my family (only 6hrs away!!).

There is a lot I miss about London and I reckon for the first year or so I felt more English than Aussie. I'd say now though that I feel settled here. We are currently building our own house, Dd will be starting school next year.

I am a sahm so I made it my job to get out and find my way around and 'make' people be friends with me!! grin

Do you have family here? Friends? We did some research online about areas to live and with the help of we pretty much lined up an area to live before we arrived. We also got my Dad to find a car for us too which was a huge help.

I have absolutly no regrets about coming back. Dh is happy here too and has job he really likes. We had to get foxtel satellite tv so he could watch the football. We are still on an endless search for 'good pork sausages' though!! The kids are very happy. We have a big garden for them to play in, beaches very close by, many new fabulous playgrounds and great schools to chose from. Hey we even got a pet dog!! Living the Australian dream we are!!gringringrin

Please let me know if there are more things you'd like to know. I am more than happy to help!!

Ps. It is a beautiful sunny warm day here today, not a cloud in the sky - lovely!!

ElleRaiser Tue 15-Sep-09 20:37:27

Dear Esselle - sounds like you could be me! Ultimately I think going back to Aus is best for DD1 and DH - and probably for me, too. And there are days I long for sunshine, a big garden and people who are friendly and straightforward. I really want DD1 to go to an Aussie school - the best of the offerings here in London are not appealing, and we could never afford to go private.

But I have lived most of my adult life in the UK now... and every time I go back home Australia feels so foreign. That worries me. I like the privacy of London, and the worldly view of the people who live here. I love travel and the big jobs market!

I guess my questions are these: are Aussie schools any better than the ones here, or am I remembering wrongly? I want to be able to send DD1 to an ordinary state school in an ordinary area and still expect she will get a decent education.

Where can we afford to live? DH and I are both on ordinary wages, so I know we can't afford anything very central. I have friends in Reservoir and I have heard Eltham is good. Do you know anything about them? I guess we want a decent sized backyard, decent schools and the odd cafes as well as some like-minded souls.

From what I have seen of friends going back - a few of them in Melbourne - it seems to take a couple of years to settle back in... sounds like you would roughly agree?

esselle Thu 17-Sep-09 01:48:36

Yes it does sound as though we have similar lives!!wink

The one thing I found I really had to do when planning our move here was to make sure I took my rose coloured glasses off! I think I had idealised Aust so much that it was begining to seem like Disneyland!

Melbourne is a big city like any other, there are the same scumbags here, crime, annoying big city traffic etc.

I am realy not sure of the job market at the moment. Have you had a look on to see if there are many vacancies in your field? When we came here DH was working in recruitment which he loathed - thankfully he was able to find the same job he did in London here and changed after 10 months.

As for the suburbs you have mentioned I really know nothing about them. We live in Point Cook which is a very new outer western suburb. It really ticked all of our boxes as it is all new housing, open spaces, playgrounds, reasonable shopping and Altona/Williamstown beaches are pretty close. Rent for a 4 bed house, garden, 2 bathrooms and Air con start at about $300/wk - which is pretty good.

My DH works in the city and catches the train in, it takes him about 40mins and there is plenty of parking at the tain station. It takes about 25mins to get into the city from here as it is all on the Westgate freeway.

I made sure I joined a local plagroup asap and have met most of my lovely friends there. With this being such a new suburb I haven't really come across too much cliquey bullshit.

I have also met some of my most lovely friends on here. There are quite few MNers here in Melb and we try to meet up for a meal every couple of months. We have also been known to meet up at playcentres, the museum and The Queen Vic markets for shopping.

I also appreciateed the privacy of London too and if it makes you feel any better, we have lived in our current house for over 2 years and I have never spoken to our neighbours (neither has DH).blush

I have been looking at schools DD is starting prep next year and I haven't come across any that a really bad at all. My DH is very anti private/religious schools so we haven't looked at them at all. I am more than happy with the state school system - so far! We lived in East London and the schools near where we lived were awful, run down and violent - there is nothing anywhere near like that here!!

The shopping here is a bit sad compared to London and the supermarkets might make you cry the first few times you go shopping. Costco has just opened here though and I will have to go and check it out. Online shopping is almost nonexistent too. But is is fab to be able to easily buy twisties, burger rings, cherry ripes, chokitos... again!grin

lulalullabye Thu 17-Sep-09 03:58:25

Don't move back for the cherry ripe, it's naff !!

lulalullabye Thu 17-Sep-09 04:01:38


esselle Thu 17-Sep-09 14:25:03

Right that's it get out!

Bugger off you cheeky cow!! wink

ElleRaiser Thu 17-Sep-09 20:48:58

That's what I like, lulalullabye, straight talking! smile

Esselle, I KNOW I am going to miss the shopping. I don't even do that much, especially since the arrival of DC1, but the UK high street is awesome for clothes, shoes, gadgets, all the best things... Was shocked last time I was in an Aussie supermarket to realise fruit and veg are better here...

How about Altona? I know of a few people who have moved there, but have never set foot in the place!

I am going to look at seek and brace myself smile

esselle Sun 20-Sep-09 14:00:49

Altona is nice. There are a lot of massive beach side mansions and normal houses. There is a nice main street and a couple of great take aways - good fish and chips! Altona meadows is a bit cheap and nasty though.

It has taken me a while to get used to the supermarkets. The fruit and veg selection isn't as big and has more seasonal produce. Everything is mainly aussie grown.

I had to get used to the fact that ready meals do not seem to exist in any edible form here! I can cook that isn't the issue - it just sucks when you want something easy for dinner. We have got some good take aways nearby.

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