Reports have reached us of extraordinary goings-on in the green and leafy English countryside. Perhaps it’s something in the water but it seems that when celebrities leave the city behind, they transform not just into ordinary mortals but into catering industry operatives! The latest example? If you’ve had fish and chips in the tiny village of Rotherfield recently and you thought the woman who handed you your bag of chips looked familiar, you’d be right. It was Lisa Marie Presley!
Yes, that’s right. Elvis Presley’s daughter has been working in a local fish and chip van in the village where she lives with husband, guitarist Michael Lockwood. But she hasn’t given up the day job just yet – she will be releasing a new album next month. The explanation for her shift in the chippy? Lisa Marie has lived in the village for a couple of years and is firm friends with local pub landlady Kim Scales, who also owns the fish and chip van – and Lisa has thrown herself right into local life, drinking Guinness in the pub and joining local people in a charity fun run. Lisa herself has said how much more friendly everyone in the village has been compared to when she lived in California.
Moving to the country is a well-trodden path for celebrities that have had a bit too much of city living, and it’s not unusual for them to take up culinary pursuits. Alex James of Brit band Blur has made an equally successful career as a dairy farmer and cheese maker in Oxfordshire, while film star Elizabeth Hurley produces organic beef jerky from her farm in Gloucestershire. Roger Daltry of The Who, meanwhile, has a successful trout fishery in Sussex.
However, even if you’re not wishing to start a second career in the food industry, living in an English country village has other attractions. The Home Counties – those which border London such as Surrey and Sussex – offer pretty villages that are within easy commuting distance of the City and the West End. Spacious houses, larger gardens and a good sense of community make them the ideal places for bringing up a family.
To find out more about living in the countryside, take a look at our Surrey Area Report.