It’s the eternal dilemma when deciding where to live in the UK, whether to head for the bright lights or for the wide open spaces.
There is much to be said for the countryside. Away from the hustle and bustle of a hectic city life it is difficult to envision a setting more removed from the cramped and jostled existence of the London commuter than a farmhouse on a remote Scottish island or a cottage in a small, unspoiled English town resplendent with thatch-topped tea rooms and roadside notices announcing the sale from somebody’s shed of freshly laid eggs and home-grown strawberries.
Of course life in the city need not involve London. Any major city in the UK will offer nightlife, shopping, cinemas and sporting events. But having lived in Manchester and travelled the land it is the writer’s experience that there is a “not quite London” spirit about Britain’s “other” cities, no matter how justifiably attached their indigenous inhabitants might be to their respective regional identities.
There is a different kind of attachment to be felt to Little Stomping on the Mire, its dreamy village green and its untarmacked roads, a place where “every man is my brother” has a different meaning to that which it has in church and where the cider is so thick it can be eaten. There is certainly no substitute for the country air and the outdoor life.
It is really all a question of personal taste. Horses for courses, as the saying goes. The invigorating freedom of country life has to be weighed up against the inconvenience of having to sail the seven seas to visit the dentist, or the unthinkable consequences of being barred from the island’s only pub.
One advantage the city in general and London in particular has is the sheer variety and choice of restaurants, especially pizza restaurants. Indeed when you are on the lookout for pizza Clapham Common is the place to be, and one of the best restaurants in Clapham Common is Eco Restaurant, where the most innovative and expertly created toppings come on a light, nutritional base for maximum flavour and the ultimate gastronomic experience.
Our folded pizzas lock in the flavour and you can have more or less anything in them that you’ve ever longed for. Unless you are seeking the wide open spaces, of course.