‘We wanted to get a foothold in village life’

Philip Hoyes, 34, a forensic engineer and company director, and his wife Sarah, a nurse, moved to the Dales after selling their two-bedroom house in Lancashire to raise their three children Aimee, six, Mitchell, three and Lucas, one.

The couple, originally from Harrogate, moved to a rental property in Austwick, near Clapham, last summer and have been unable to buy a home since.

“We wanted to move for the children as it is a better environment for them to grow up in,” Mr Hoyes said.

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“We wanted to rent at first in order to settle into village life and then buy something when the right place came up. We did feel people were so happy when we moved in– especially from the school. We were made so welcome.

“Potentially our children would increase the numbers at the school by 10 per cent.

“We are attracted to the idea of a new build, but it is just not an option.

“The older properties are so much more expensive. The size that they are means a lot are completely out of our budget.

“A lot of the houses that are available to us are either out of our price range or they are renovation projects which are obviously not suitable when you have three young children.

“We really want to get a foothold in the village and stake our claim. I don’t think we will really feel part of it until we buy into the village.

“It is very important to have families like us moving into the Dales. The young families keep the schools going and the more that come in the more the village amenities keep going.

“We definitely don’t regret it though.”