Cummings Wanted Down Under


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Cummings

When the Cummings family leave their beloved northern Scotland for the shores of New Zealand, they are disappointed by the atrocious winter weather. Will they see beyond the rain?


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Transcript


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Hello and welcome to Wanted Down Under.

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The show that catapults a British family right across

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to the other side of the world

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to help them make the biggest decision of their life.

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The Cummings family from the very north of Scotland are considering

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a move further than most.

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The family is young enough that we can start afresh as a family.

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Dougie has left the Navy after 23 years

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and wants to get back some time with his children.

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I was away for a lot of it and I came back,

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I mean, Sarah didn't even know who I was.

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But 11-year-old Sarah needs convincing.

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She made it clear from the start that she didn't want to go.

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-Could you see yourself here?

-No.

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If they move, they'd be leaving a lot behind.

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I just don't want to live here.

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Their family and friends are on the other side of the world.

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So, what will they decide when they weigh everything up?

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You kind of think to yourself, we could be making the biggest mistake of our lives.

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Or we could be making the most fantastic decision of our lives.

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In the current economic downturn, a new life in New Zealand is tempting.

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More and more people are needed, with many skills now in demand.

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Last year, 18,000 Brits made the move.

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But had they really thought through their big decision to emigrate?

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We've given another 20 British families

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a week to put their dream lifestyle on trial.

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After that, they'll have to vote one way or the other.

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Will they stay in the UK?

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Or will they move to New Zealand?

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For stunning scenery, Scotland is hard to beat.

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And close to John O'Groats,

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the Cummings family already live in an enviable setting.

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Duncan, or Dougie to his friends,

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and wife, Laura, have daughters, Sarah, 11, and Jo, 10.

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And twin sons Gareth and Stuart aged six.

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It's a large family, but over the years, Dougie has hardly seen them.

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I joined the Navy straight from school when I was 16.

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On a ship, you can guarantee being away for six months, seven months a year.

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Doug was away for an awful lot of time when our first daughter was born.

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He literally left four days after she was born. He was gone for like three months.

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My last year on the Ark Royal, we were away for ten months.

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I came back and Sarah didn't even know who I was.

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He missed most of the children's birthdays, which was hard.

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But that's part of being a Navy family.

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So, after 23 years, electronics engineer Dougie hung up his Navy hat

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and is looking for a new direction.

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Now it's nice to be leaving it behind and spending some more time with the family.

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And they're a lively lot. Jo and her older sister Sarah get on well, but don't always see eye-to-eye.

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We're best friends one minute and worst enemies the next.

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But, all in all, we're really good sisters.

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And as for their twin brothers, Gareth and Stewart...

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Our twin brothers are very annoying.

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-Energetic.

-Very.

-Mm.

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Our kids are very loud, very energetic...

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Oi, stop!

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With the kids in mind, mum Laura has set her hopes on New Zealand.

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We always said if ever we were to move anywhere onwards it would be abroad, didn't we?

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Cos we knew in the United Kingdom we couldn't get any better than what we've got here.

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And you said about New Zealand, didn't you? And we thought, "Hmmm!"

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But 11-year-old Sarah loves her school and friends in Scotland

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and doesn't want to leave.

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I don't like going to New Zealand because I don't want to leave my friends and all that.

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So... It would just be a big change.

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She's just starting high school and she's got loads of really good friends here

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but I've not got that much good friends here so it's going to be harder for her if we do.

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We don't want to drag them away from their friends and split them up from what they're used to.

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But I think they'll thank us for it in the end. I really do.

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There's a lot for the family to think about.

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The decision to emigrate or not to emigrate is the biggest decision we've ever had to make in our lives.

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So, really, you kind of think to yourself, we could be making

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the biggest mistake of our lives or we could be making the most fantastic decision of our lives.

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So we gave the Cummings a once-in-a-lifetime chance

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to sample New Zealand for a week and find their ideal future.

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We have three different lifestyles for the family to sample.

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One in the country, one in the city and one on the coast.

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Each with an offer of a job and a brand new way of life for them to enjoy on their budget.

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First, let's take a look at the country lifestyle.

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The beautiful countryside around New Plymouth

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offers fantastic outdoor living

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set against the breathtaking backdrop of Mount Taranaki.

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It could be a chance to ski on a volcano.

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Country property prices here are very reasonable.

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£185,000 buys you a four-bedroom home with its own four acres of land.

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An instrument electrical engineer job with a starting salary of £30,000

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is on offer at this specialist technology company.

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Kim Gilkison is the operations manager.

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Duncan, the kind of thing that you would do here is to design and specify automated control systems.

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We have a relatively flat structure, so anyone in the company can manage a project.

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We have flexible time here so if you want to go and see your kids play sport, you can.

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Duncan, it's a wonderful company to work for. We'd love you to come and see us when you come down under.

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So that's the kind of lifestyle they can enjoy in the country.

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Let's see what's possible in the city on their budget.

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Taranaki region's colourful main city is in New Plymouth.

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It's a friendly, family-orientated place to live

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with impressive architecture such as the museum,

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as well as loads of shops.

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And the good news is, four-bedroom homes in the central suburbs start at just £150,000.

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At this electrical contractor, Dougie could earn a salary of up to £35,000.

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Mark Dingle is the general manager.

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Duncan, we're looking for people like you to work with us in the oil and gas industry.

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Depending on what interests you,

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we could have you working as a project manager, site supervisor, or technician.

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Duncan, we've got a fantastic city lifestyle, great cafes, schools and restaurants.

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Your family will love it. JLE's growing. Taranaki's thriving.

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I know you'd love it here and I'd love to meet you when you come down under. See you, mate.

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It looks like their life could shape up pretty well in the city, but what about a new life on the coast?

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Overlooking the Tasman Sea, coastal New Plymouth

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boasts an all-encompassing waterfront lifestyle.

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From the scenic splendour of the four-mile cycle promenade

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to the thrill of some of the best surf in New Zealand.

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Homes close to the sea and sand will cost you a little more.

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This spacious four-bedroom home, a short drive from the seafront, is on the market for £240,000.

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There's a £30,000 job available as a project engineer

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in this company serving the thriving gas industry.

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With his office overlooking the waterfront, general manager Mark Hatch

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is keen to meet Dougie and his family.

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As a project engineer, you'd take projects from design through construction to completion.

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We're family-friendly with flexible hours to give you time with the kids.

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Look at this. Swimming, fishing, sailing. 200 metres from the office.

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It's a brilliant coastal lifestyle.

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Duncan, Transfield Worley's a great place to work.

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I'm sure you'll enjoy working with us. We look forward to seeing you.

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There were three possibilities

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for the Cummings family to try out in New Zealand.

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In the country around New Plymouth,

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where there's fresh air and good value property.

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In the city itself, where it's culture and busy shopping.

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Or on the dramatic coastline of New Plymouth,

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where even the job has a sea view.

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So, three very different possibilities for our family to try.

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So which one did we decide would suit them best?

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The Cummings family tested the coast option for their trial week.

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And you can't get a more stunning coast than this.

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New Plymouth on New Zealand's North Island

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sits on a bulging peninsula

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dominated by the 9,000-foot Mount Taranaki volcano.

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From the UK and the top of Scotland to the bottom of the world,

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getting to New Plymouth actually needed four different flights

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and took a gruelling 36 hours.

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They're now over 11,000 miles from home,

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and, for such a long journey with four children, they seem amazingly perky.

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Absolutely exhausting but good fun.

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We just came around and all you could see was this beautiful volcano in the distance.

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-Clear as a bell.

-Oh, my life.

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And considering this is winter, the sky is just beautiful and the sea is gorgeous.

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I think the best scenario this week would be really nice weather

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and basically seeing and experiencing as much as we can.

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Worst scenario would be pouring with rain and us not being able to get out and about much.

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Today might be sunny but anything can happen with New Zealand's weather.

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I wouldn't want to dampen your enthusiasm though, Laura.

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I'm just so excited I could burst.

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SHE LAUGHS

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They're straight off to their rental accommodation.

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Oh, wow. Look at that volcano, look.

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Is that a real volcano?

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It's a real volcano.

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It's only a ten-minute drive to New Plymouth.

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For their trial week, the Cummings are staying

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in a five-bedroom single-storey house a few blocks from the sea.

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It's not just the timber construction that's black and white.

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Inside, owner Judy has furnished the whole place to match.

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But what do this colourful family think of it?

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Lovely!

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-Laura, hi. I'm Judy.

-Hi, nice to meet you.

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Come on then, you lot.

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Judy has collected designer furnishings from all around the world.

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-That huge mirror at the end looks beautiful.

-Isn't it?

-Yeah.

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That's a genuine antique and I think it came from England many, many years ago.

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Genuine antiques and sleek design.

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I hope the boys are going to behave!

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Uh-oh, trouble!

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The stylish kitchen has everything fitted.

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Double oven, microwave,

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and you've got your fridges in behind here.

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-Recessed fridges.

-Oh, wow.

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And there's even something to keep Dougie cool.

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-This is my beer fridge, apparently.

-Oh...

-So, um...

-Oh!

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Outside, there's plenty of room

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for the kids to play, or, in the case of Stewart and Gareth,

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somewhere to get into trouble.

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Look, Gareth. That's a rope!

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Leave the rope alone. Gareth, come out of there, please. Come on, it's not... Out.

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Scoot!

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Back at home in Scotland, the Cummings are used to having open space

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around their seven-bedroom property. It was built in the 1970s and is worth about £170,000.

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If they can sell it, they'll be looking to spend up to £200,000

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on a New Zealand property, including a small mortgage.

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They need enough space both outside and in

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to let the children run around.

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We found them three homes to get a realistic idea of what they could afford

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if they make the big decision to emigrate.

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Property one is only minutes from the seafront and well within their price range at only £140,000.

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It has four bedrooms, two bathrooms and a generous garage.

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The chalet-style makes heavy use of local timber.

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And the property is set in its own rainforest.

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Very appropriate with the change of weather.

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Oh, we brought the rain with us from Scotland, I think.

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Oh, wow, look at all the windows.

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I bet in the sunshine this is really bright, isn't it?

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It's gorgeous.

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It's kind of like a... It's got a Swiss feel to it, hasn't it?

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A log-burning stove heats the cosy living room and connected kitchen.

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And, if you're still not warm enough, there's always the hot tub.

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Do you like spas?

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-It's like a mini swimming pool.

-A bubbly bath.

-It's lovely and warm.

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Once again, the boys have made themselves at home.

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So what about the bedrooms?

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Let's go in here. This is the boys' room.

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Come and have a look.

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There's certainly plenty of room for the kids.

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It's so overcast outside and yet the rooms are still bright because of the windows.

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-Is that a New Zealand trait, lots of windows?

-Yes, yeah.

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Upstairs, the master bedroom is again light and airy with its own en suite.

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Might they tempt Sarah with it?

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This is your size of room, is it, Sarah?

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Cos your room at home is quite small, isn't it?

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-You'd quite like an en suite, would you?

-Yeah.

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-You'd have to clean it yourself!

-No!

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Down in the garden, while the kids let off steam,

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Mum and Dad talk money.

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-New Zealand is 348 so that would relate back to about £140,000.

-140, that's really good.

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Laura likes the price but there are still two more properties to see.

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-OK, brilliant.

-Let's go look at the next one!

-Good idea.

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It's early September and still winter in New Zealand.

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As the rain really sets in, property two could be a welcome shelter.

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And it's described in the estate agent's notes as a "contemporary hideaway".

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It too is surrounded by trees, has four bedrooms and is remarkably good value at £135,000.

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But it's not only their appetite that's "whetted".

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Oh, it's soaking!

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I thought we came here to get away from the rain!

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SHE LAUGHS

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They can't wait to get inside and are immediately impressed.

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Oh, this is lovely...

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Oh, wow!

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It's big!

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That is gorgeous. Oh, my goodness.

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The open-plan living area links through to an unusual first-floor conservatory

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that takes full advantage of the home's green surroundings.

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I just love all the trees and the greenery. It's just smashing.

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The twins are happy here too.

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But it's time to drag them upstairs to the dining room and kitchen.

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Hmmm...

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It's quite small, the kitchen.

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Yeah. It would need a new kitchen. But I mean, it's lovely here,

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look at the view just out the window!

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That is nice.

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And that tree is beautiful.

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Upstairs, all the bedrooms are on the third floor at the top.

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-There's your master bedroom, guys.

-That's a good size, isn't it?

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The kids would have plenty of space, including somewhere for the girls' clothes.

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I love the fitted wardrobes.

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We don't have fitted wardrobes and they take up so much space back home.

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And the last bedroom is perfect if you like grapefruit for breakfast.

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Oh, look at the fruit out the window!

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You could just wake up in the morning, open the window and grab your breakfast!

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Oh, why is that?

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We've had strong interest in the high 300s, low 400s which,

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equivalent to your English pounds, is about your £130, £135,000.

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It's a lot of home for the money but, for the first time, Laura is critical.

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This is a lovely house but I kind of feel like I want to pick it up and plonk it in a field.

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What do you think, Sarah?

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No.

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Sarah's finding it hard.

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Viewing properties has made a possible move seem much more real.

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So, before property three, the family go for lunch and a chat.

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But there are tears over the hamburgers.

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I just don't want to live here.

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She got a bit upset over lunch just cos we'd sat down for the first time since we've been here

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and talked a little bit about it, how we were feeling.

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She's frightened, in a way, to tell us how she feels

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cos she thinks we'll be disappointed, but we said we want her to be honest.

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But I think, ultimately, she's just frightened of change.

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Perhaps Sarah will be cheered up by a trip to the countryside.

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Mum Laura is keen to view a property surrounded by fields just like their home in Scotland.

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But that comes at a price so we're showing them a property above their current price range at £240,000.

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It's actually brand new with an impressive living area and bedrooms all on the same level.

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The house is in a commanding position high on its own hill.

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-Hi.

-Hello, hi!

-Pleased to meet you.

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-Nice to meet you, hi.

-This must be the crew?

-This is!

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First, it's the massive living room that gets the big "wow".

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The open-plan design takes great advantage of the views.

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This is lovely, this is like...

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the sink looking out at the greenery and everything.

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And I just love the family space.

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It's ideal for the kids and, for Mum and Dad, the master bedroom has a clever hidden walk-in wardrobe.

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Ha! Wow!

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That's a very clever idea, isn't it?

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So can they see themselves living in this up-market property?

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We know this one's up at 240,000, which is well out of our budget

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but you can see why. It's beautiful.

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That's probably worth 140,000 as it is.

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It's got it all, but we would have a huge mortgage,

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and we wouldn't basically have the time to sit back and appreciate it.

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We'd hardly be at home. We'd be at work all the time just to pay the bills!

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-Hiya...

-Welcome.

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The Cummings braved the rain and viewed three very different homes.

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Property one was big on wood and affordable at only £140,000.

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Next was this impressive multi-level property also secluded in trees,

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but Laura wanted more open space around the house.

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Property three, at £240,000, was set on its own hill surrounded by fields.

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Time to vote on property.

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Right then, you lot, it's property vote time.

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Do you prefer the properties in New Zealand or properties back home?

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Ready? Three, two, one. Vote.

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New Zealand!

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-CHILDREN:

-UK!

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Well, it's a 50-50 split.

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The family vote is split and the weather isn't getting better,

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as they head back and have time to think.

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With the effects of jet lag and the busy schedule,

0:20:160:20:19

it's now Laura who's having doubts about the move.

0:20:190:20:22

Obviously we're tired, cos it's been quite intense

0:20:220:20:26

and there's pressure to try and make a decision as to what we want to do.

0:20:260:20:29

And I'm finding that quite challenging at the minute.

0:20:290:20:33

I didn't fly to the other side of the world to be freezing cold and wet.

0:20:330:20:39

I really felt that I would come out here and it would be 100% yes or no.

0:20:390:20:44

I must admit, today, if I had to make a decision,

0:20:440:20:48

it would be to stay at home.

0:20:480:20:49

Yay! It's a once-in-a-lifetime thing. She's listening to us.

0:20:490:20:55

The Cummings were split on houses but, either way,

0:20:580:21:02

finding the right job for Dougie is vital if they're to move.

0:21:020:21:06

After 20-odd years in the Navy, he's facing the prospect of a new career in civvy street.

0:21:060:21:12

The kids are up early playing doctors and nurses, but today

0:21:120:21:15

it's Dougie's blood pressure that could rise.

0:21:150:21:18

Today's quite important because, basically, since leaving school,

0:21:180:21:22

I've only had one employer apart from Dounreay, and that's been the Royal Navy.

0:21:220:21:28

So it's quite nerve-racking today,

0:21:280:21:30

but I'm going to get as much information as I can.

0:21:300:21:34

We'll see what work they've got here and what they're after.

0:21:350:21:38

-Bye, Dad.

-Bye.

0:21:380:21:40

While Doug is at work, Mum and the kids

0:21:410:21:43

have decided to check out the coast around New Plymouth in an old lifeboat.

0:21:430:21:49

It'll give them the chance to mull over their big decision.

0:21:490:21:52

That's if Gareth can find his sea legs.

0:21:520:21:54

Hon, you'll be fine, you'll be safe. Hold my hand, I'll look after you.

0:21:540:21:58

He's a bit frightened.

0:21:580:21:59

Never done this sort of thing before so this is a bit of a new challenge, isn't it, Gareth?

0:21:590:22:04

-I don't want to do this!

-I know, darling. Don't worry, it'll be fine.

0:22:040:22:09

Doug is just as nervous, as he's keen to make a good impression

0:22:100:22:13

on his first day in the gas production industry.

0:22:130:22:16

Morning. Mark Hatch, Transfield Worley.

0:22:170:22:19

-How you doing, Mark?

-Welcome to New Zealand.

-Thanks.

0:22:190:22:22

Doug, today we're planning to go to Methanex.

0:22:220:22:24

It's one of our client's plants.

0:22:240:22:26

They're in the process of recommissioning one of their chemical methanol plants.

0:22:260:22:31

Doug is being tested as an electrical engineer at one of New Zealand's biggest

0:22:310:22:35

gas processing plants, and safety is all-important.

0:22:350:22:38

It's an alien environment for him.

0:22:380:22:42

Doug is used to large naval vessels and the scale and complexity of the engineering here is daunting.

0:22:420:22:48

In the Master Control Room, Mark needs to find out how easily Dougie will understand the systems.

0:22:480:22:55

You see we're in the final stages of commissioning,

0:22:550:22:58

and I guess it's similar to what you've done in the Navy.

0:22:580:23:01

What would you do to recommission a new piece of equipment

0:23:010:23:04

on a vessel and how does it compare with this?

0:23:040:23:06

We've actually got a trials group that deal with checking equipment

0:23:060:23:10

-and what they do, is they look at this valve here...

-Yep.

0:23:100:23:13

..and they'd check out it's correctly installed, got the correct wiring,

0:23:130:23:18

check out the wiring continuities...

0:23:180:23:20

He seems to know his stuff so no alarm bells ringing yet.

0:23:200:23:23

That's very similar to what we're doing here.

0:23:230:23:26

SIREN WAILS

0:23:260:23:27

No, it's not an emergency, but it IS time to launch the lifeboat

0:23:270:23:31

so that Laura and the kids can bravely explore the local coastline.

0:23:310:23:34

Because of the nature of what we're doing,

0:23:410:23:44

I'll take you round the harbour, get them familiar with it.

0:23:440:23:47

-Are you ready to go out in the waves?

-Yes.

-Yeah.

0:23:470:23:50

-Cos there's lots of seals there.

-Yeah!

0:23:500:23:52

Perhaps the idea of watching seals will distract Gareth from the big waves.

0:23:520:23:58

Good boy. Welcome back, Gareth.

0:24:000:24:03

As little Gareth relaxes, Laura's thoughts turn to Dougie's job

0:24:030:24:08

and the important challenge of making ends meet.

0:24:080:24:11

We're probably going to get less for our house than we really wanted, so

0:24:110:24:15

that's gonna need to be topped up with a monthly wage in case we have to get a mortgage.

0:24:150:24:20

It's really important for Doug today because, obviously, us emigrating depends on him getting a job.

0:24:200:24:26

While Laura and the kids head out to sea, Dougie needs to find out

0:24:260:24:30

about the lifestyle he could achieve on the £30,000 salary.

0:24:300:24:35

What sort of other stuff is around Taranaki?

0:24:350:24:37

It's a Mecca in New Zealand for surfing.

0:24:370:24:40

Locally, I do a lot of sailing and gliding.

0:24:400:24:43

There's lots of boating up the rivers, good trout fishing.

0:24:430:24:47

Do they pay you enough to...

0:24:470:24:49

To survive out here, to live?

0:24:490:24:52

Yes, it's a good lifestyle, so that offsets not making a million dollars a year.

0:24:520:24:58

Sounds good, but Mark wants to know how well Dougie works with other engineers.

0:24:580:25:02

-We might set you a little bit of a test to see if you can help us with it.

-Oh-ho... Oh.

0:25:020:25:09

Looks like he's in for a rough ride and he's not the only one.

0:25:090:25:13

-Woo-hoo!

-Whoa!

0:25:130:25:16

CHILDREN GIGGLE

0:25:170:25:19

-Gareth, are you excited? Do you feel a bit better?

-Yeah...

0:25:210:25:24

Yeah.

0:25:240:25:26

It's not long till they get to the seal colony.

0:25:260:25:29

-See over here? Right up...

-Oh, yeah, right up on the top.

0:25:290:25:33

-Up where?

-See those holes there? They're actually mutton bird holes.

0:25:330:25:38

Oh, look at them all. Look!

0:25:380:25:40

Wow!

0:25:400:25:42

Wow, look at that.

0:25:430:25:45

-What do you think about the seals then, guys?

-Cool.

0:25:450:25:49

-Did you see many?

-Incredible.

-Yeah?

0:25:490:25:52

It's crunch time for Dougie.

0:25:520:25:54

He's been taken to the far side of the gas production plant

0:25:540:25:58

to perform a remote electrical test with the control room.

0:25:580:26:01

Doug, what I'd like you to do is give Steve a call up on the radio

0:26:030:26:06

and tell them we're ready to do a loop check and see if we can do it.

0:26:060:26:10

Steve, it's Doug, radio check. Over.

0:26:100:26:12

Control room to Doug. Got you loud and clear.

0:26:130:26:16

Are we ready to go for a check on this valve?

0:26:170:26:21

Hi, Doug. We just want to do a check on pressure control 02100, please.

0:26:210:26:26

Uh... Zero bar.

0:26:260:26:28

For the safety of the plant, it's crucial Dougie knows how to take accurate measurements like this.

0:26:280:26:33

N-0, correct. 50 bar.

0:26:330:26:38

So how does Mark think he's doing?

0:26:380:26:40

He's doing a fantastic job. He's good in the control room,

0:26:400:26:43

knows his way round the DCS screens, loop calibrations.

0:26:430:26:46

In the field, he's done all the right things from the point of view of loop checking.

0:26:460:26:50

Worked well with Steve. He'll fit in well.

0:26:500:26:53

'2100 complete.'

0:26:530:26:55

-Roger and out.

-Thank you.

0:26:550:26:57

-That's great, Doug.

-Excellent.

0:26:570:27:01

Dougie has impressed them, but can he see himself working in this very unfamiliar gas industry?

0:27:010:27:08

Out at sea, his son Gareth has overcome his fears and is now at the helm of the boat.

0:27:080:27:13

Steady as she goes!

0:27:140:27:15

-You're doing a good job.

-He's over his tears.

0:27:150:27:18

He's definitely a sailor.

0:27:180:27:20

Whoa...

0:27:200:27:21

As the family head back,

0:27:210:27:24

it's time for Dougie to vote on whether he found the job a gas.

0:27:240:27:28

Well, I've had a fantastic day today.

0:27:310:27:33

I've learned lots about the oil and gas industry over here.

0:27:330:27:37

If I had to vote for working here or the UK,

0:27:370:27:40

my answer would be New Zealand.

0:27:400:27:42

The weather hasn't been kind to the Cummings so far

0:27:450:27:49

and may even affect their final decision about New Zealand.

0:27:490:27:52

The land of the long white cloud

0:27:520:27:53

may not be able to boast the same plentiful sunshine as its neighbour Australia,

0:27:530:27:57

but is the weather in New Zealand really that bad?

0:27:570:28:00

New Zealand weather is very variable over the entire country.

0:28:080:28:11

We sit in an area of westerlies.

0:28:110:28:13

These westerlies come across a large area of water

0:28:130:28:17

which means that there's very moist airflow over the country.

0:28:170:28:20

RADIO: 'In the Southern Alps, heavy snow is likely, that should clear...'

0:28:200:28:24

The radio and TV forecast with elaborate graphics are very detailed

0:28:240:28:28

to help you plan your day and decide if you need an umbrella.

0:28:280:28:32

New Zealand has an average rainfall of over 1.5 metres a year, about 50% more than in the UK.

0:28:320:28:41

But there's also more sunshine!

0:28:410:28:45

The weather in New Zealand is probably sunnier than the UK and it also tends to be a bit warmer.

0:28:450:28:50

We're about ten degrees further towards the equator than the UK.

0:28:500:28:54

However, if you find yourself in some fine Kiwi sunshine at the start of the day,

0:28:540:28:59

it may not stay that way.

0:28:590:29:01

The weather changes quickly and we can have what's known as "four seasons in one day."

0:29:010:29:06

You can be up a mountain on a beautiful sunny day,

0:29:060:29:09

and then the snow will come in, and then, the wind will pick up!

0:29:090:29:12

We can have the spring, summer, winter, all right there in 24 hours.

0:29:120:29:16

New Zealand is the place for the great outdoors,

0:29:160:29:20

so here's some important weather advice for staying safe when you're out and about.

0:29:200:29:24

Make sure that you wear sunscreen.

0:29:240:29:26

The clear, blue, sunny skies that we have here mean that we have a higher UV index.

0:29:260:29:30

You can get sunburnt pretty easily.

0:29:300:29:32

Be aware of the weather forecasts.

0:29:320:29:34

You can be out in beautiful sunshine, up a mountain,

0:29:340:29:37

and in a couple of hours you could be in snow.

0:29:370:29:39

Leading on from that, make sure you prepare for a nasty change in weather.

0:29:390:29:43

Always make sure you pack warm clothes and jackets,

0:29:430:29:46

cos you never know what might happen during that day.

0:29:460:29:49

The Cummings family from the north of Scotland are looking for a new start

0:29:530:29:58

on the dramatic coast of New Zealand, now that Dougie has left the Navy.

0:29:580:30:02

For the girls, it was difficult because I was away for a lot of it.

0:30:020:30:06

But elder daughter Sarah wants to stay where her friends are.

0:30:060:30:10

I just didn't really think it would be a be a good idea.

0:30:100:30:12

It would just be a big change. Moving on, and that.

0:30:120:30:16

The twin boys found the houses interesting...

0:30:160:30:19

And Laura loved what they'd get for their money.

0:30:200:30:23

Oh, wow!

0:30:230:30:25

But the family were still split.

0:30:250:30:28

-New Zealand!

-UK...? UK!

0:30:280:30:31

Dougie liked his potential job.

0:30:310:30:33

Oh, it's soaking!

0:30:330:30:35

But the mood changed when the weather didn't.

0:30:350:30:39

I didn't fly to the other side of the world to be freezing cold and wet.

0:30:390:30:43

Will Kiwi rugby bring everyone onside?

0:30:430:30:46

Yes!

0:30:460:30:47

And how will family messages affect their final vote?

0:30:470:30:52

It's hard to imagine a day-to-day existence not seeing them.

0:30:520:30:57

Uprooting the family and starting again means everyone has to forge new relationships.

0:30:590:31:05

For children in particular, friends play a vital role in settling into a new place.

0:31:050:31:11

The Cummings have been invited by Dougie's potential boss Mark and his family

0:31:130:31:17

to support the local team in a rugby match.

0:31:170:31:20

It's not only a chance to witness the razzmatazz of the game, but to see how well everyone gets on.

0:31:250:31:32

Do you get much chance to go to the games?

0:31:320:31:35

-I have been to most of the home games this year, actually.

-Is it expensive?

0:31:350:31:39

You can get an admission ticket for about four bucks, you can sit up here for about 20.

0:31:390:31:44

After doubts about the weather, the stadium atmosphere is starting to bring Laura back on side.

0:31:450:31:51

Everything's coming more alive, more real.

0:31:510:31:53

We're becoming a part of things now. Feels good.

0:31:530:31:57

It's fantastic. You can't beat live rugby, all the violence on the pitch!

0:32:010:32:05

The kids are being fed, excellent company,

0:32:050:32:08

and we are huddling up to keep warm!

0:32:080:32:11

Most importantly, Sarah seems to be getting on well with Mark's daughter.

0:32:110:32:16

Maybe there is a glimmer of hope she will consider New Zealand?

0:32:160:32:20

Are you warming up to it a little bit Sarah?

0:32:200:32:22

Just a little bit? A teeny bit?

0:32:220:32:25

A little bit?

0:32:250:32:27

A teeny bit?

0:32:270:32:28

She's warming up to it a teeny bit!

0:32:290:32:31

It's a win!

0:32:310:32:34

Taranaki have won but has Sarah been won over?

0:32:340:32:38

Time to vote.

0:32:380:32:39

So what do you think, crazy gang, about making friends in New Zealand?

0:32:390:32:43

Is easier in New Zealand or in Britain?

0:32:430:32:46

On three, two, one. Now.

0:32:460:32:49

So, that's three for New Zealand, plus half a vote from Sarah.

0:32:490:32:53

Fantastic.

0:32:530:32:55

It's the first time she hasn't voted completely for the UK.

0:32:550:32:58

The week in New Plymouth has brought home to the Cummings that emigrating is anything but straightforward.

0:33:010:33:07

The votes have been split at every turn.

0:33:070:33:10

Now they have to confront the wrench of leaving friends and family behind.

0:33:100:33:15

As mum and Dad try to convince them about New Zealand,

0:33:150:33:18

Dougie discovers that being parted from friends and family is their real reservation.

0:33:180:33:24

-Could you see yourself here?

-No.

0:33:240:33:26

It's your friends, isn't it? It's Chloe, it's your friend?

0:33:260:33:30

So if they could all come here, you would stay here?

0:33:300:33:32

It's missing birthdays, anniversaries,

0:33:340:33:37

weddings, christenings. Missing people who we love.

0:33:370:33:41

Come on, Jo, play the film.

0:33:410:33:42

It's time to see the messages from home.

0:33:420:33:46

Hi, Sarah and Joanne, it's your best friends here.

0:33:460:33:49

Hope you are having a good time but we'll miss you a lot.

0:33:490:33:52

Hope you're enjoying New Zealand. You've went on about it often enough,

0:33:520:33:56

and I'm really going to miss you if you go.

0:33:560:33:59

I hope you're being good boys and girls.

0:33:590:34:02

Grandad loves you and we're just talking about if you

0:34:020:34:07

moved to New Zealand. If you did,

0:34:070:34:10

you know very well that grandma and grandad would miss you extremely. A lot.

0:34:100:34:16

Doug was one of the old-fashioned types.

0:34:160:34:18

He came to see me and ask permission to marry my daughter,

0:34:180:34:23

which you don't seem to get much of these days.

0:34:230:34:26

For me he has just always been Dougie, he's an adventurer.

0:34:260:34:30

That's part of his mental make-up.

0:34:310:34:34

At the age of four and a half, he told us he was going to join the Navy.

0:34:340:34:37

He's done what he set out to do.

0:34:370:34:40

Had a family, married a smashing girl.

0:34:400:34:44

Laura is the type of person that you can't dislike. She's just too nice.

0:34:440:34:49

She's just too bubbly and too happy, she gets on with everybody.

0:34:490:34:54

Our daughter Laura, she's quite a girl, in one respect -

0:34:540:34:59

there's nothing that she wouldn't do for anybody.

0:34:590:35:02

she's very kind, and there is nowhere she wouldn't go

0:35:020:35:08

for the sake of her family and for a better life for the children.

0:35:080:35:13

Laura and I are very close and we have been over the years.

0:35:130:35:17

When she moved to Scotland, it was only a year or two afterwards

0:35:170:35:21

that we moved up as well. Doug would be away for months on end,

0:35:210:35:25

and I suppose, I sort of took over the male role with the children.

0:35:250:35:35

My sister did a fantastic job coping with the young four, on her own, most of the time.

0:35:350:35:41

The only person I think it would really affect is our eldest granddaughter, Sarah.

0:35:410:35:47

I think she has expressed comments

0:35:470:35:52

that she may not like the thought of going out there.

0:35:520:35:56

I love having the children around.

0:35:560:35:59

But we will see them, they're not going to the moon.

0:36:010:36:05

We will see them, cos although the grandparents won't be

0:36:050:36:08

necessarily travelling out too much, I mean, we shall go out.

0:36:080:36:12

Probably every third year, or something?

0:36:120:36:15

-It's not the same as just popping round for a coffee.

-It's true, it's not the same, it's not the same.

0:36:150:36:20

Basically, we don't want him not doing something

0:36:200:36:25

that he really wants to do because of us.

0:36:250:36:29

Because, eventually - and we're well over 60 now, both of us -

0:36:290:36:34

we'll leave him in a more complete way than he will have left us.

0:36:340:36:41

So... Sorry, we don't want him to spend the rest of his life

0:36:410:36:48

with this little thing in his mind

0:36:480:36:51

that says, "I could have done it, but didn't."

0:36:510:36:55

Hi, Laura, it's your best friend here.

0:36:550:36:58

I'll really miss you, if you decide to go to New Zealand but

0:37:000:37:05

you know, you will always...

0:37:050:37:07

I'll just miss you, Laura. Sorry.

0:37:120:37:16

Oh dear!

0:37:160:37:19

Nana and Grandad love you very much indeed, so be good children

0:37:190:37:23

to your mother and father and I am sure that everything will work out.

0:37:230:37:28

Whatever you decide to do, we're with you 100%.

0:37:280:37:35

Dougie and Laura, same applies for me.

0:37:350:37:38

Obviously, we will miss you, and miss the kids, but enjoy yourselves.

0:37:380:37:45

-SOFTLY:

-If you go...

0:37:460:37:48

Oh God, I can't...

0:37:480:37:49

SISTER-IN-LAW COUGHS

0:37:490:37:51

Laura and Doug, if you decide to go, then we are all very happy for you.

0:37:570:38:05

I don't want you to go.

0:38:050:38:07

I will miss you loads.

0:38:110:38:12

Oh, bless her.

0:38:120:38:15

That's it, can't do any more. Sorry.

0:38:160:38:19

There's a lot of love going around.

0:38:210:38:23

It's hard. It's hard to imagine a day-to-day existence not seeing them.

0:38:230:38:31

Are you a little bit upset, baby?

0:38:320:38:34

Oh, sweetie.

0:38:340:38:37

Oh, honey.

0:38:370:38:39

How do you feel after that video, then?

0:38:430:38:46

Sad, I just want to go home.

0:38:460:38:48

The trial week has been a revelation for the Cummings family.

0:38:490:38:54

Both Dougie and Laura started enthusiastically.

0:38:540:38:56

I'm just so excited I could burst!

0:38:560:39:00

But Laura had one dread.

0:39:000:39:02

Worst scenario would be pouring down with rain, not being able to get out and about as much as we'd like.

0:39:020:39:08

When her worst fear came true, everything changed.

0:39:080:39:10

I didn't fly to the other side of the world to be freezing cold and wet.

0:39:100:39:15

When we arrived, it was beautiful sunshine and we saw the mountain.

0:39:150:39:19

From then on, it's just been rain, freezing cold, rain.

0:39:190:39:22

If I had known it was going to be like this, I'd have packed my wellies from the UK!

0:39:220:39:27

That completely washed the rose tint off her glasses.

0:39:270:39:29

It totally did, yeah.

0:39:290:39:30

The houses never failed to impress them.

0:39:300:39:34

That is gorgeous.

0:39:340:39:36

Oh my goodness.

0:39:360:39:38

We've only seen three properties.

0:39:380:39:40

But the space is good, it's been well used.

0:39:400:39:42

The value for money, they seemed very reasonable.

0:39:420:39:45

Dougie could see the family living here, and really enjoyed his job trial.

0:39:450:39:49

It is a very positive job offer, brilliant company.

0:39:490:39:53

Everything seems amazing.

0:39:530:39:56

But it just goes in the mixing pot with everything else.

0:39:560:40:01

And the night out at the rugby seemed at last to pull everybody together.

0:40:010:40:06

We really enjoyed the rugby. Mark and his family were fantastic, really nice people.

0:40:060:40:11

I have never been to a rugby match before but I felt that the atmosphere was so friendly.

0:40:110:40:15

More importantly, the evening finally seemed to bring daughter Sarah on side.

0:40:150:40:21

Are you warming up to it a little bit, Sarah?

0:40:210:40:24

Just a little bit?

0:40:240:40:26

She's warming up to it a teeny bit, she said.

0:40:260:40:29

As they consider all their feelings for their final vote,

0:40:290:40:33

it's mum Laura who's finding it hardest to decide.

0:40:330:40:37

When you are in an "I don't really want to emigrate" mood, you kind of look for reasons not to go.

0:40:370:40:44

Obviously, not having a job and having to find a job would've been a big reason

0:40:440:40:48

to delay us emigrating but to have a job offer there,

0:40:480:40:54

makes you think, Oh, gosh, is this fate? Is this saying, "Give it a go?"

0:40:540:41:00

It's just something else in the mixing pot of emotions, isn't it?

0:41:000:41:03

-It's terrifying.

-All these barriers that potentially are there

0:41:030:41:08

when you first start thinking about emigrating - jobs, houses, lifestyle,

0:41:080:41:13

how the kids are going to be, one by one they've been jumped over

0:41:130:41:18

and knocked down and now we're at the stage where it's like...

0:41:180:41:22

"Wow, if we want this to happen, we can do it."

0:41:220:41:26

As the sun finally comes out, it's big decision time.

0:41:260:41:31

Are the Cummings going to come?

0:41:310:41:33

All right, guys, we've had a week in beautiful New Plymouth in New Zealand.

0:41:330:41:39

We've all had a wonderful time and it's time to vote now

0:41:390:41:43

on whether you want to live in New Zealand or the United Kingdom,

0:41:430:41:47

based on how much we've enjoyed ourselves this week.

0:41:470:41:51

So, Gareth, are you ready?

0:41:510:41:54

Three-two-one!

0:41:540:41:55

-UK.

-Middle.

-UK.

0:41:550:41:59

-UK.

-New Zealand.

-Half and half.

0:41:590:42:03

So, it's only Dougie with the full New Zealand vote.

0:42:030:42:06

It's three votes for the UK, with Laura and Gareth still undecided.

0:42:060:42:10

I still need to see a lot more of this beautiful country before I can make my mind up one way or the other.

0:42:100:42:16

It is hard. It's made me realise that New Zealand is very much like the Highlands,

0:42:160:42:23

so I'm just looking for that special factor, that special something.

0:42:230:42:28

I voted New Zealand because I think there is a lot more to New Zealand than we've seen so far.

0:42:280:42:32

We've only seen a very small corner of it. I can't for definite say that I couldn't live here.

0:42:320:42:38

Shall we say goodbye? Goodbye from the crazy gang, bye!

0:42:380:42:42

A week of uncertainty for the Cummings family,

0:42:440:42:46

with everyone pulling in different directions.

0:42:460:42:50

Laura, she felt it was crucial that the children would be happy to move.

0:42:500:42:54

But they seem uncertain.

0:42:540:42:56

For Dougie, good work prospects and overall package makes New Zealand very attractive,

0:42:560:43:01

but for now, it seems unclear whether they'll be moving where they're wanted Down Under.

0:43:010:43:07

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:43:240:43:26

E-mail [email protected]

0:43:260:43:29

A new life is luring the Cummings family from Caithness to make a new start down under. Dad Dougie wants to spend more quality time with his kids after a working life in the navy.

But when they leave their beloved northern Scotland for the shores of New Zealand, they are disappointed by the atrocious winter weather. Will they be able to see beyond the rain and decide if they could live in New Plymouth on a permanent basis?

Nicki Chapman presents.