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Courtyard gardens with little DCs

(8 Posts)
Mummagumma Fri 07-Oct-11 13:23:12

We're currently in a gardenless flat with 22 month DS, and looking to move soon, to a house. The location we favour most at the moment is a small southern city, but the rows and rows of Victorian and Edwardian terraces that make up the housing stock mostly have not-very-big courtyards. The outer suburban fringes have 70s and later houses with bigger gardens, but we're not keen on them as neither DP nor I drive, so don't want to be too far from the centre.

What's it like only having a small outdoor space with a toddler (and hopefully another one in a few years time)? Will we regret not having enough room for him to really stretch his legs? We're thinking this is going to be a 4 or 5 years house, so moving again when he turns 7.

Iggly Fri 07-Oct-11 13:26:48

Could you learn to drive? Might be handy when you've got two! I passed my test in february and glad I did with DC2 almost here.

Ps we have a big garden but accessible via stairs as in a flat. We also have a park two minutes away. Loads of outdoor space has been invaluable - in every weather! Is there a park near the centre?

Pinkiemum Fri 07-Oct-11 13:28:55

As long as there is a park close by I don't see a problem, we have a very small courtyard and because of the weather this summer hardly spent any time in it this summer. Luckily we have a park two minutes from our house where our daughter can play. You can still have toys in a small courtyard my daughter 3 yrs 8 months has a sand table and a small plastic bbq plus a plastic pool which can either be filled with balls or water.

RunningOutOfIdeas Fri 07-Oct-11 13:33:30

We have a courtyard garden. While we would love more space and grass DD (3) seems to be OK. She has a play house, sand table, paddling pool in one area. We have covered the paving in this area with large foam mats.

We do make lots of use of the local parks. Quite often we will go to the closest for 30 minutes of running about / swings. Trips to the supermarket often involve a stop at the park opposite on the way.

So I would say, if the property is right for you in all other ways, the garden does not need to be a problem.

scaryteacher Fri 07-Oct-11 16:40:44

It's fine - we had two courtyards and he bounced from one to the other. We had Dartmoor not far away, and a play area within walking distance, so it was no trouble.

Mummagumma Tue 11-Oct-11 15:06:58

Golly, I forgot I'd started this. Thanks for your replies; reassuring that it's not going to be a major problem. There are quite a lot of parks and open spaces around, and Dartmoor's not going to be a million miles from us either, scaryteacher! The garden thing is really for those days when it showers continually, and you can only grab 10 mins here and there to run around before the next downpour (it takes more than 10 mins to even get to the Rec where we live currently).
DP and I do intend to learn to drive; if we do have a second DS I think it'll really enhance the quality of our lives, particularly so we can access the nearby countryside and beaches where there aren't train services.

rosycheeksandasmile Tue 11-Oct-11 21:27:23

I think the answer to this is in how close the nearest large outdoor space is - we are currently renting with exactly this situation. Particularly as you have a boy who will need lots of running around!

chandellina Wed 12-Oct-11 12:21:36

our Victorian house has only a 20ft garden of paving stones - it's not much but still somewhere for 3 year old DS (and DD on the way) to get some air and poke around. We have a great playground/open fields only 5 minutes away so that made it feel all right to me. I do miss the larger garden we had until recently (ca. 45 ft. with grass) but even that size isn't much for an older child to kick a ball around.

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