Checkout | 30. Oct 2022

Leaving London To Live The Good Life

There was a time when living in a place where you need a boat when you’re low on milk might have attracted fewer takers. The pandemic seems to have changed all that. It’s partly the work-from-home culture and an increasing number of companies allowing staff to “work from anywhere” – somewhere greener or quieter or off the mainland altogether.

Here is the story of Yvonne and Jason - as told to The Telegraph:

"Yvonne and I had a consulting business – Yvonne used to be CEO of a London insurance company and I was on the board of a branding agency so we had decided to join forces and build something together. The company did very well very quickly and we were running around like headless chickens. There was lots of travel and we’d won a project where the client wanted us to spend six months in the US. We’d be standing on the platform getting a tube at seven in the morning, thinking, “Why are we juggling all this? There must be a better way to live.”

In April 2018 we were in Edinburgh for work, rushed off our feet, when someone at the meeting said that we looked like we needed a break.

She suggested we go to one of the islands for a couple of days. It wasn’t a bad idea. Yvonne looked on Google Earth and spotted this tiny island, less than eight miles long and two miles wide, that looked like it was in the tropics – turquoise blue water and golden sand beaches. We headed there.

The ferry journey from Oban was stunning – you’ve got the mountains, the ocean, the yachts. It was a world we didn’t even know existed. It takes three and a half hours on a good day and I remember so vividly arriving at Tiree. We drove off the ferry and parked in this beautiful harbour.

Everything conspired to make us fall in love with the place. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky. It was 23C with just a tiny breeze. A chap wandered over and started talking, then invited us to dinner. Both of us were feeling this gut instinct which said, “This feels like home. Make this our home.”

So within months Jason and Yvonne moved from London to that very island - he goes on:

"We were typical clichés from London and never pretended to be anything else, but within six months of living here, our neighbour had offered us one of his orphaned lambs. We ended up taking seven. Lots of neighbours got involved and taught us how to look after them – they needed feeding five or six times a day – and the lambs became part of the family, all with names and personalities. We now have 11 sheep and they’re not cheap.

One day we were trying to think of how to help them pay their way and Yvonne said: “I can knit.” I had no idea that this high-powered CEO loved knitting but we went ahead and launched a woolly hat business – WELAN, Sustainable Wool Hats and Eco Friendly Woolly Beanies from the Isle of Tiree in Scotland – which has gone crazy. We sell online and in the shop on Tiree harbour. Yvonne does the spinning and the knitting. I wash the wool, separate the fibres – all the dirty jobs."

To buy one ot their wonderfully fairytale-happy-end-beanies go to