The last year (and a bit!) has been a challenge for everyone. No matter what your circumstances, everyone has been affected by the pandemic in one way or another, and some are still being affected now. Our team have been fantastic throughout this time, often whilst working from home and juggling looking after clients with caring for families, children and pets (the last two often clamouring for attention over the other!). We asked the team to reflect on what they feel they have learnt during this time, and about some of the positives they’ve experienced since the start of the pandemic, and here’s what they said:
Chris Burton - Director, Claygate
In the last year, we’ve all learnt the true value of perspective surely? I’ve also begun learning how to use my drone to put together photos and videos of properties, soon also to be put to use on the beaches of Cornwall too!
Claire Fuller – Finance and Operations Director, Woking
The last year has been…something else. The pandemic has been truly, truly terrible but I’ve been amazed and blown away by the various community groups that have popped up in the village I live in. Personally, and professionally, I’ve gone through a lot of change. I’m so proud of the vaccination programme and how it’s been rolled out and aren’t we lucky to have the NHS here in the UK? I’ve learned that I’m happy and comfortable in my own company but really nothing beats a big hug from your loved ones.
James Dodds - Lettings Area Manager, Cobham
To value the relationships we have and recognise how lucky we are to live and work in the communities that we do.
Elizabeth Clark - Lettings Negotiator, Cobham
During lockdown I bought maps and explored parts of the local area I’d only ever seem from a distance and discovered how peaceful it is to be in nature alone. I also learnt how much you can miss people too!!
Gareth Davies – Managing Director, Cobham
I was meant to be a qualified skipper by now but that’s had to be postponed to next year… I’ve used the last 12 months as an opportunity to gain deeper connections with friends and family. I find it so reassuring, that in these times of physical distance we’ve connected more closely than ever before. The press is full of negative news stories but there’s some really great positive ones out there to hang on to.
Martine Finn – Office Manager, Cobham
We made friends with our Polish and Filipino neighbours and because of that, I started learning Polish and Tagalog. I finished about 9 jigsaw puzzles (1,000 pieces each) in the first lockdown and discovered the joys of gardening and growing our own veggies.
Lewis Costello – Sales Negotiator, Claygate
Aside from dabbling in a bit of woodwork as a lockdown project I also spent quite a bit of time last year cycling around Esher, Oxshott, Cobham, Weybridge, Kingston and Walton. Something which I would never normally make time for.
Michaela Kocher – Bookkeeper, Woking
One thing I’ve definitely learnt is that I can easily live a simple life and enjoy it!
Roly Matthews – Director, Hinchley Wood
I took up running at the tender age of 41. I decided sitting around snacking and enjoying Rosé for lunch wouldn’t do much for my middle-aged spread and I had the time in “Lockdown 1.0” to not make excuses. I was the least likely person I know to take up running, I loathed it at school and hadn’t tried since. I’m now a running bore as my GB team will testify, although I don’t think I’ll be breaking any land speed records any time soon.
Sarah Gunn – Sales Negotiator, Cobham
I’ve learnt to appreciate what’s on your doorstep, woodland walks and all the amazing gardens we have in the Surrey area, especially Cobham.
Simon Tongue – Senior Sales Negotiator, Cobham
During the first lockdown last year, my son and I had something of a Time Team thing going on, when we looked for and discovered through some careful digging, the site of the original primary school local to us, which was demolished in the mid-60s and is now enveloped by woodland. The current headmaster then took this on, doing an illustrated talk to the rest of the school.
Natasha Sanchez - Senior Lettings Negotiator, Cobham
The last year definitely reiterated how important family and friends are - we are making an effort to make more memories as soon as possible.
Amilcar Caires - Lettings Manager, Claygate and Hinchley Wood
Last year has been an eye opener in so many ways, I have started learning web design and gained certificates in HTML and CSS. I also learnt that Diamond cut alloys are expensive to have repaired so will be staying clear of them henceforth!
Lewis Sutehall – Sales Manager, Cobham
One of many things I’ve taken from the last year, is to appreciate some of the simple things in life more, whether that be a walk, cycle or a picnic. The world has become so fast paced with such want and need for material things. It’s been nice to slow down and appreciate the beauty of nature.
It’s great to hear from the team that they have found some positive aspects to the last year, however hard it might also have been at times. We are crossing our fingers for easier times ahead and that each of our clients and contacts have some positives to take from the experience – moving house and finding their dream home was definitely a positive for some, which we’re thrilled to have been able to help them achieve over the last year!