Families sample life 'down under'. Karen Galloway is desperate to move her family to New Zealand, but after less than 24 hours into their trial week in Auckland, disaster strikes.
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Welcome to Wanted Down Under,
the show that catapults a British family right across
to the other side of the world
to help them make the biggest decision of their life -
whether to stay in the UK or to move to New Zealand.
Karen Galloway is desperate to move with her family to New Zealand.
I just really want to do it.
At the minute I'm so excited, I could burst!
They're tempted by a brand new start in a stunning country.
But it's a long way to go when you're leaving loved ones behind.
I'm going to miss her so much!
Karen's husband, Lee, has a daughter from a previous relationship
who he'd be leaving back in the UK.
I don't want them to go.
But, after less than 24 hours in New Zealand, disaster strikes.
This trip's almost over before it's even begun!
So he's in hospital.
I'm literally on my own!
With its magnificent landscape
and small population of only four million,
New Zealand is many people's idea of the perfect place
to get away from it all.
To apply to live in New Zealand as a skilled migrant,
you must be between the ages of 20 and 55
and be on the skills shortage list.
But a move down under is never straightforward.
We've given another British family the opportunity
to spend a week down under
to see if it's all they've dreamt it would be.
After that, they'll have to make a decision, one way or the other.
To stay in the UK or to move to New Zealand.
Karen and Lee Galloway live in the Liverpool suburb of Whiston
with their three children,
17-year-old James and toddlers Harvey and Poppy.
They've lived here all their lives
and mum, Karen is desperate for a fresh start.
I first thought about moving away, far away when I had my babies.
James went through a bad time growing up, he got bullied.
I don't want to go through that again with Harvey and Poppy,
I can see Harvey going the same way as James -
he's got the same temperament -
and I really don't want to bring them up round here.
If they move down under,
Karen's oldest son, James will be leaving his biological father behind.
Me and my dad passed our bike test together.
It took me twice though, cos I failed the first time!
He won't say nothing at first and he'll keep quiet about it,
but it will really have an effect on him. It's going to be hard.
I am extremely worried because he's grown up round here,
he's an adult practically,
so I'm taking him away from everything he knows.
That's not Karen's only problem.
Her husband, Lee is still unsure about a move.
He's an electrician by trade
and his qualifications could get the family a skilled migrant visa.
It is all dependent on me getting work over there.
But there's just one thing holding him back.
His ten year old daughter, Freya, visits every fortnight
and is a big part of the family.
Freya's a big thing for me...
I don't know whether she'd cope or
-whether I'd cope, more than anything, you know.
But family and friends can visit,
but it's just Freya, just my daughter.
Otherwise we'd be there now, I think, wouldn't we?
Freya's just as much a part of the family as us,
she's got everything here, she's included in everything.
She doesn't live here, but she's part of the family.
She's going to struggle, she's very close to Lee, a proper daddy's girl.
They get on really well.
She loves her daddy very much.
She's been great, you know.
Every time we talk about it, she's fine,
but it's not actually happened yet,
so you don't know how she's going to cope
or what's going to happen, you know.
The Galloways have a large extended family on their doorstep.
Everyone's feeling the pressure of making such a big decision.
I would say I have been 90% that I want to do it,
I want to go to New Zealand,
I want to start a new life for me and my family.
And now it's getting closer,
I will admit it,
it's hitting me like a slap in the face
and I'm realising now it's a massive thing we're doing.
It looks like anything could happen,
so to help the Galloways decide, they're going to visit Auckland.
Situated at the top of New Zealand's North Island,
Auckland is known as the City of Sails
and is a perfect base to explore the area.
With a housing budget of £150,000
the Galloways should be able to find plenty of suitable homes.
We've found three possible lifestyles for our family,
each one offering a brand new way of life
for them to try on their budget.
But which one will be the most suitable?
Properties are a lot better value in the country.
Spacious family homes
can cost around £150,000,
so bang on the Galloways' budget.
But if you want that dream place, you'll have to spend a lot more.
To match his UK salary of £24,000
Lee would have to find work as a commercial electrician,
but the big jobs are in town,
so he'll be looking at an hour's commute to the city.
Coming home to a rural paradise like this, however, could be tempting.
So, very different from their life in the UK,
but what about the second option?
The Galloways will have to venture into the suburbs
to find a home
on their £150,000 budget.
And they may have to stretch
their finances for more space.
Lee would have a 15 minute commute to work in the metropolis.
Auckland is a fast-growing city and electricians like Lee are in demand.
If he works overtime, he could take home around £25,000,
about the same as he earns in the UK.
That all looks very inviting, but what about the third option?
Auckland's coastline epitomises the calm and beauty many people crave
but properties a walk from the beach can be pricey.
Homes like this cost around £300,000, so double the Galloways' budget,
but if they look further inland,
they should be able to snap up something that won't break the bank.
The booming tourist trade means there should be work for Lee,
but he may have to do a half-hour commute to the city
to earn more than £20,000.
Three very different possibilities there for the Galloways to try,
but which one did we decide would suit them best?
We thought the city option would be the best for the Galloways.
It has a family-friendly atmosphere and Lee should find good work.
And with open beaches only a short drive away,
Karen will get to experience the tranquillity she craves.
We've lined up some properties for them to view...
This is the best out of the three.
But still it's nothing like the ones at home.
..And organised a job for Lee to try out...
It's a big change, starting again somewhere else.
..As well as giving them a taste of the New Zealand lifestyle,
but will it all get too much.
Because Harvey and Poppy are only little,
they don't know that they wouldn't see me again.
It's going to be the hardest thing we've ever done and, you know,
it might be the worst thing we've ever done.
None of the Galloways can foresee how turbulent the week ahead will be,
but it's time for them to take the plunge.
The flight from Liverpool to Auckland takes the Galloways 32 hours
and 12,000 miles from home.
None of them have ever been this far away before,
and leaving their loved ones at the airport
even for a short trip like this wasn't easy.
Tears off me mum!
Because we're coming here to look at houses and see what it's like,
I think that's what brought it home for her.
They're tired now, they just want to get to bed, but brilliant!
It took us ten minutes to wake them up on the plane,
but they've been really, really good.
We knew how long it was going to be
but you don't realise until you do it!
They're all excited about the adventures that lie ahead.
-Really excited now!
Looking forward to seeing the properties mainly,
not so much the job!
I just want to see it all, I want to take it all in.
Meeting people, yeah, everything. I'm so excited!
The whole family's future is at stake as they head out into the unknown.
The Galloways will be staying in a house in a quiet suburb of Auckland.
After 30 hours of travelling it will give them calm
and space to relax before they start exploring.
With four bedrooms and a large open-plan living area,
there's plenty of space for the kids to roam.
Which one is it?
Let's hope the Galloways like it!
D'you like it?
-Just so different!
-A lot different from ours.
Everything about them is really different.
Yeah, I love it! Absolutely love it!
I suppose ours is open plan as well.
I love this, but look at the landing there!
Wow, I love this bit!
It's clearly the kind of place they'd love,
but would it be out of their reach to buy?
At least they can enjoy it for now.
Oh, my word! Look at the wardrobe!
Now that's a bit different from the one I've got at home.
We could play games in here, Poppy!
It's a lot bigger. The houses look big, I like the ceilings.
We'd never be able to afford anything of this size at home.
I mean I've barely got a wardrobe at home.
That's like bigger than my kitchen!
There's something they didn't expect outside.
Wow! Look at that, Pop!
Isn't it cold!
Karen's got culture shock of the highest order.
The house is completely different to what we're used to.
I'm surprised how fun it looks, to be honest.
It does look... Everything's different.
I don't know why I'm surprised, it's a completely different country.
I don't know why I'm surprised, but I am surprised.
-It's nice though.
-It's quite foreign!
-Yeah, I love it!
-I like the style of house.
As soon as we'd flown in, I thought "I'm going to like it".
So she likes it, which is more than can be said for James.
It seems very similar to England.
I don't think there's that much gained,
to justify the distance we're coming.
It's the other side of the world and it's not that much better.
So far, so bad for James, then.
And for Lee, his daughter Freya is already playing on his mind.
Freya was fine but as I say, it's not happened yet.
It will be completely different when it is, you know,
or if it does, but she was fine.
-I think Freya's really coping with it well, isn't she?
Well, you say that,
but talking about it is completely different, isn't it?
The ball's started rolling now.
It's just all more real, isn't it?
But little do they know how real it's just about to get!
The rental accommodation is just to the Galloways' taste,
but sometimes the unexpected can happen.
This trip could be over before it's even begun!
During their first night down under,
Lee started experiencing severe pain in his leg.
In fact, the pain became so unbearable
that Lee admitted himself to hospital.
The following morning,
Karen is trying her best to carry on as normal.
When we were on the plane, Lee's leg started hurting,
swelling up and going really red.
And then when we've got off the plane,
it's got progressively worse.
It's got very hot.
And just the pain...
When he was on the plane,
we thought his leg was swelling up and stuff
and then as it got worse we did think it could be a DVT.
What a nightmare!
Karen's concerned Lee may have developed a condition
called Deep Vein Thrombosis or DVT, which can be life-threatening.
Every long-haul flyer should be aware of what it is
and how best to avoid it.
DVT is a condition in which blood clots form, usually in the legs.
It can result from a person sitting down
for long periods of time without moving.
It mainly affects people with underlying health problems.
The first signs are often a tightening of the calf in the leg.
The fact that you feel a bit stiff and you can't move around so much.
It just feels a bit uncomfortable, like you've been kicked in the calf.
If it's not diagnosed and treated early, the condition can prove fatal.
It's important that this Deep Vein Thrombosis is diagnosed very quickly
because if it's not in the early stages,
then the patient or the traveller may go on to develop coughs,
and coughing-up of blood.
These clots can migrate or travel up the veins through to the heart.
To reduce the risk of developing DVT on a flight,
you need to keep the blood flowing to the legs by moving around the cabin
and stretching your legs regularly.
But if you have any other symptoms, see a doctor immediately.
In such situations as leg pain, a little bit of a temperature,
feeling a little bit unwell,
they should report to the nearest accident and medical centre.
The Galloways imagined living the dream life in New Zealand,
but what was supposed to be a glorious week down under
has turned into a nightmare!
Karen's been stuck at home
and not only has she been worried about Lee,
she's experiencing first-hand the isolation
of being so far from her loved ones.
I don't know where I am, I don't know who to go to,
I don't know what phone calls to make.
I'm literally on my own.
So it's a bit of a blow, to be honest,
I wasn't expecting it, but these things happen.
Karen can't wait to get to the hospital to see how Lee is.
After a full body scan, medics have diagnosed Lee with cellulitis -
an infection caused by a previous wound which deteriorated on the flight.
Dad, is it this foot?
It was more red, basically, than swollen but it's loads better.
-I couldn't touch it the other day, but...
-What is this for?
Although not DVT, cellulitis can also be dangerous if left untreated,
so Lee is staying in for observation.
I couldn't believe it!
-What are them arrows for?
When he said "I'm keeping you in" I was like, "Ohhhh!", I was gutted,
couldn't believe it!
So what does Lee think of the trip so far?
I haven't seen New Zealand, but the hospitals are good!
They've been really good here.
But this is real life, like, isn't it?
This is living New Zealand life, isn't it!
No holiday for us!
That's the case.
Mwah! I've missed ya!
It's a relief for everyone to know Lee is going to be OK,
but all Karen and the family can do is sit and wait.
When we first came, I was really excited,
but with what's happened with Lee, it's like really unfortunate,
because it just feels like I'm at home, doing the tea for the kids.
It's just very normal.
It's a long way to come and a lot of expense to just be here,
it's just the same as being at home.
So, has all this changed Karen's mind about the move?
I'm not saying nothing yet.
We'll see how it goes, see if we get a feel for the place and stuff.
I'll let you know, but I'm quite indifferent at the minute.
It's hardly the perfect introduction to a life down under.
This trip certainly isn't turning out as the Galloways had hoped,
but at least Lee is on the road to recovery.
We've taken Karen and the children out to try and cheer them up.
They've come to a children's session at the local library.
Hopefully, they'll all feel a little less lonely!
Hi to everybody and hello to our special visitors today,
Harvey and Poppy who have been on a plane and come a long way.
We're really pleased to have you here at our library today.
It looks as though Poppy and Harvey are settling right in.
And even Karen's joining in!
If they were to move to New Zealand, Karen would hope to meet new friends through events like this.
It's quite interesting now having a child - Charlie's my first,
it's such an introduction to people.
I've met people that I would never have normally met through work or...
Well, this is going to be my route,
meeting people while I'm here,
because obviously I'm not going to be able to work
so it's through the kids and school.
It's a really easy introduction when you've got kids, it's not so hard
and there's a girl that goes here, Vicky, she's an English girl.
And she's got little twins and we've just met her through this.
Karen's had a positive day after all and she can't wait to speak to Lee!
I have met friends and chatted and stuff and sung songs.
Lee gives her some good news, too.
He's been discharged.
Cool. So we'll get there!
Karen's had a rollercoaster of a day.
With Lee on his way home
and a successful trip to meet some other mums,
Karen's finally feeling positive about being in New Zealand.
Actually at the minute I'm so excited I could burst.
I really am!
If you were to ask me now "Do you want to go home?", I'd say "No, I'll stay please".
Just speaking to people and getting out the house,
I mean we had a bit of a hiccup with Lee
and there was getting out and seeing it and realising
that I will actually make friends...
Look at the kids on the beach!
You don't have to drive to the beach.
You're next to the library, and the beach is are on your doorstep.
It's like, you just don't get that at home.
I just really want to do it.
In my heart of hearts, I just think it's the right thing
for us as a family to do, I really do.
I'm just really excited at the minute, I really am!
It's finally time to check out the all-important property.
Back in the UK, the Galloways live in a three-bedroom terrace in Liverpool.
They believe it could be worth around £150,000.
It's a small house for their growing family
and they'd like to live in a quieter and safer area.
In New Zealand they're looking for a spacious property with some land
and a rural or sea view, but their £150,000 budget
might not get them exactly what they're looking for.
We found them three properties in the Auckland suburb of North Shore.
It's good for children and a short commute to the city for Lee.
First up is a three-bedroom property on the market for around £130,000.
It's below their budget, but only has three bedrooms.
Estate agent, Helene Brownie, is keen to show off her prize offerings.
Has he got you a flower?
This is nice for its price. It's got this extra piece here, the foyer.
So it's west-facing which means we get lots of afternoon sun down here
and this would be a really nice area to use in the summer
with an outdoor table or a spa pool just to get away from the sun,
so I apologise there's not too much of it today!
Mmm. They don't seem too impressed with the foyer!
Time to go inside, that's if Helene can unlock the door!
TV bloopers, this bit!
That's it. OK. Come on through.
We're in! Let's hope they like it!
It's at the very start of your budget.
You've got exclusive views out here.
Mmm, 'exclusive views' of a bush and a fence!
Not exactly the rural view they were hoping for!
Is the interior any more exciting?
That's the old electrics.
As we said, the old style, isn't it!
-You're an electrician, aren't you?
Mmm, Helene was hoping Lee might be excited by the challenge
of modernising this home's electrics. I'm not sure he is!
Would the master bedroom be any more electrifying?
The room is met with a deathly silence.
Nice, but it's small, isn't it?
It's nice, but it is small.
Helene's not giving up easily!
So, for a fraction under 300 for the North Shore,
this is actually very good buying.
I mean, it's probably no bigger than ours at home, is it?
It's just you want to go bigger and better, don't you?
This cosy pad with "exclusive views" hasn't exactly sparked the Galloways' imagination.
-I didn't think it was going to be as small.
-No, it's very small.
It's what we're used to at home. It's very dated, isn't it?
But I think they're all going to be, aren't they?
To a certain extent, you know.
But it is a bit smaller than we'd expected.
Onwards and upwards - we hope!
Property Two is on the market for around £150,000
and right at the top of their budget.
It's got open plan living space,
three bedrooms and a beautiful garden.
These really are exclusive views!
Are shoes all right if we wipe 'em?
This is much bigger than the other one, it's more of a family home.
So, you know, they made it nice. Have a look around.
They don't need the third bedroom, so they're using it as a work area.
-Everything's, ugh, you know, small!
-Bit cramped, isn't it!
Karen and Lee don't seem over the moon about this one.
They were hoping for a bit more space.
That's smaller than ours, isn't it? Ours is small, but it's smaller.
Oh, dear! Even a deluxe spa bath doesn't interest them!
Hopefully, the garden might impress the Galloways a bit more.
That is amazing, absolutely amazing!
This is what my idea of New Zealand is!
-I'm just overwhelmed by that.
I just think it's absolutely stunning!
Finally, they've found something they like.
It's very, very peaceful and quiet.
-That's what you'll pay your money for, isn't it?
-The view's nice.
-Do you want to come downstairs, Poppy?
-It's not your actual...
More lemon trees, Harv, look!
There's grapefruit trees, Feijoa trees, lemons...
And this is the underneath of the house,
which is very good head-height
if you wanted to develop it any further.
This is where we could stick me mum!
So you could develop under here, and it's all insulated
and nice and dry for underneath a home.
So ideal storage.
Lee would want to adapt the house to make the most out of the garden.
I was thinking actually extend this so this is all enclosed as well
and I'd have all this glass. This would all be glass-fronted.
There's bound to be loads of this.
-This would be like a living room, going back there.
It turns out Lee is an electrician cum architect cum interior designer!
It's now time to sort out the garden!
But you could build something down there, like a decking going out.
There's loads, isn't there.
I'd bring the fence in right down the other side,
cut off the neighbours that you've just met!
The Galloways seem to be getting excited. Or are they?
They wouldn't recognise it...
Everything seems so dated, doesn't it, the houses?
They're just differently built than over ours, aren't they,
from their layout, everything!
They look more...
Prefab-ish, d'you know what I mean, not as solid as our houses.
It's not what I'd buy at all in Britain.
What a pity!
Lee doesn't seem to like it, after all!
Will Property Three be any better?
It boasts five bedrooms, two bathrooms and also has a big garden.
It's on the market for around £200,000 - £50,000 over budget.
But will it show off a better quality of New Zealand housing?
Nice, light, sunny home.
You can see you're getting a lot more for your money now.
You've got the five bedrooms,
you've got the second living area which is ideal for guests.
Lee now has an eagle eye for build quality.
This house has tonnes of space.
It's very minimalist with some interesting interior decoration.
Now isn't that lemon sorbet yellow?
This is Helene's cream of the crop, so Lee, what's the verdict?
It's a bit like our static caravans.
More like prefab-ish, not solid, you know, like ours.
I know it looks like brick outside, but it's still only prefab.
I think I'd have to build my own if I was going to come.
This is the best out of the three,
but still it's nothing like the ones at home.
Helene's got another trick up her sleeve.
I know your mortgage is going to be a little bit more
to achieve a property like this,
but also, cos you've got the extra rooms you could have flatmates.
It could bring you an extra income when you're not having guests.
Flatmates! Come on, Helene, they're not exactly students
and let's face it, today Lee's not buying!
It's not the house, it's the actual finish on the houses, if you know what I mean.
What do you mean, Lee? What's wrong with this?
I mean, like all the bits that slope, like here,
just all the little finishing details
and everything that add up and make it look...
You know. Like that wall there is all breeze-block.
You know, it's just the finishing of them.
It'd really wind Lee up!
Perhaps the stunning brick facade will change Lee's mind.
They're single skin these, as well, just single skin brick.
They're concrete blocks.
They're quite wide and they load them up
and then fill them up with concrete.
Helene's starting to get the feeling she's fighting a losing battle.
The brick is a veneer... it's just a cladding. Underneath...
-Oh, yeah, you can see it there.
-Underneath the weatherboards.
-It was the fashion back in the '70s to put the...
And now it's not!
She's had a bit of a rough ride with these discerning customers.
The Galloways are starting to realise they might not be able to afford what they want on their budget.
I think wherever we end up, Lee, we're going to have to...
Oh, I know, I know.
It's not going to be what we're used to, is it?
The Galloways might have to spend a lot more
if they're going to find their dream home in New Zealand,
but at least the kids are enjoying themselves!
The Galloways have seen three very interesting properties.
Property One was a fairly average three bedroom pad, well below budget,
with those rather uninspiring views.
Property Two was right on budget and although small inside,
certainly got Lee excited with its landscaped garden.
I'd bring the fence in, cut off the neighbours that you've just met!
And Property Three was a five bedroom delight in lemon and blue,
with some rather dated brick effects which didn't tickle their fancy!
So, how will they vote?
The houses in New Zealand feel too much like caravans,
so I'm going to say Britain.
Although the scenery and the location is amazing,
I have to say the houses are going to take some getting used to,
so I'm going to say the UK.
Although the plots are bigger,
but the actual house itself I'd say...
It's the UK on properties, but for the Galloways,
it's not all just about bricks and mortar.
Home is where the heart is.
Although they've been looking for somewhere to live,
they haven't forgotten who they might be leaving behind.
Freya is the constant though,
you know, with me.
If he can't do it, he can't do it, we don't do it, you know.
He's the one leaving Freya,
so at the end of the day the decision is all Lee's.
Will Lee be able to handle the pressure when he speaks to Freya?
Hey, missing ya!
And what will happen when the whole family hears from their loved ones?
I'll miss him too much when he does go, I really will.
If you do go, I'll miss you and I'll love you lots.
She's just my world, and I'm going to miss her so much!
The properties weren't exactly what the Galloways were hoping for.
In order to afford the home and lifestyle they want,
Lee will have to find a good job.
Back in the UK, Lee's an experienced electrician
and owns a successful business.
He earns around £24,000 a year.
It would be a shame to give the business up now,
like, cos it's been going for three years and it's been good, you know.
In Australia, we set up a trial day with a firm who specialise
in installing electrical systems into new apartments.
Kerry-Marie Calendar is the boss.
Our company started 20 years ago. He have a staff of 65.
My husband started in his garage and he's grown from then.
We're a very family-orientated, happy business.
We want to fulfil all our customers' needs,
we're looking forward to meeting you.
-See you later. See you, babes.
As Lee heads off to work, both he and Karen are aware
of the importance of the day ahead.
Everything rides on the job.
It determines where we go, where we end up.
That's how we're getting out here, on Lee's trade,
so yeah, a lot riding on it.
Yeah, it's a combined thing with Freya and work.
We can't come over without it,
it's a lot of points on the immigration forms.
Lee will have to impress the new boss with his technical skills
and will want to earn a similar amount
to the £24,000 he earns in the UK.
We're going to go and meet the guys here, OK?
Kerry introduces Lee to Peter and Kevin,
who are going to show him the ropes.
-Cheers, thanks very much.
-All the best.
The first job is on a site across town,
but this job isn't on the scale Lee is used to.
He has to climb the height of an unfinished skyscraper
and there's no lift!
When Lee finally gets to the top it's straight down to business.
This kind of work is just what Lee is used to,
but do his colleagues think he's up to the job?
Yeah, a little bit of a difference installation-wise, work-wise,
but I think he'll fit right in.
I mean it's a big change but from what I've seen
and the lads I've spoken to,
I'd be quite excited about coming over and working, and starting again somewhere else.
Lee is desperate to make this job work,
not just for him, but for his whole family.
I'll take you through to the board room
-and go through the induction process.
If you'd like to come through.
He's going in for the most important interview of his life.
Meanwhile, Karen has taken the kids to the beach.
This could be the kind of safe environment she's looking for in which to bring them up,
but thinking of her children makes her think about Freya.
When we're at home and we do stuff like going to the beach and stuff, Freya's usually always with us,
so that's something, if it does happen, we'll have to get used to.
It's not going to just be hard for Lee,
it will be hard for all of us.
I mean, the babies idolise her.
It's just something we're going to have to come to.
He's going to have to see if he can do it.
He might not be able to get on the plane.
He might get so far and then get to the plane and say "No, I can't do it".
He's saying he can do it at the minute,
but Freya's coping really well with it at the minute.
I don't know how Lee's going to react or going to cope with it,
if Freya breaks down, which, in all fairness, she's going to.
What will Lee's potential boss make of him?
What sort of electrical experience have you got?
Well, I started off originally doing houses,
just domestic and then moving onto commercial,
doing like petrol stations, fire work, fire detection, fire alarms,
mechanical and electrical side of them.
Interesting - we have got a mechanical side to our business.
Electrical mechanical is quite specialised experience,
-it's quite good you've got that experience.
Lee wants to know what conditions he might be working under
and how much he might earn.
How many hours do electricians do?
Mainly 40 hours a week.
The pay rate for an electrician is 25 an hour
and we do pay time and a half over 40 hours.
I mean, usually you'd probably say on average,
I would say electricians bring home between 50 and 60,000.
Lee could earn around £24,000 a year, about the same as he earns in the UK,
but did he pass the test?
As far as going and wiring up apartments,
he could do it with his eyes closed, basically.
He's very experienced and he'll be like a duck to water
as far as the guys are concerned. Definitely fit in very well.
The problems I was facing coming over here, thinking about it,
was Freya first and then work was a big one coming second to that,
but what I've done today, speaking to the lads and going on the job,
I think I'd be quite excited about coming over.
I think that's put that to bed, really, that one.
It's been quite good.
Top marks all round, so time to vote.
Thinking about it in the past there's been a couple of issues about me coming over
and the job was one of them, but today, talking to the lads
and thinking about coming over, about a change,
I think my decision would be New Zealand.
Karen Galloway has always dreamt of a better life in New Zealand
where the scenery is breathtaking and her children can roam free.
In my heart of hearts I just think it's the right thing for us as a family to do, I really do.
I'm just really excited at the minute, I really am!
But, on our family's very first day down under, disaster struck. Lee was rushed into hospital.
I don't know where I am, I don't know who to go to.
I'm literally on my own.
And the properties didn't impress them, either.
A bit like our static caravans.
I'd have to build me own if I was going to come!
Son, James is far from convinced about the move.
I expected it to be sunny, but...
With what we're leaving behind, I don't think we'll gain much.
In the face of adversity,
both Lee and Karen are determined to make it work
but there's still one thing that could put a stop to everything.
Lee's ten year old daughter would stay in the UK
and the emotional pull would be massive.
For Lee, Freya is never far from his thoughts.
Hey, missing ya!
On one of the floats? Are ya?
It might sound like she's just next door,
but 12,000 miles is a long way away.
She's in the torchlight procession tonight
and usually we'd just drive up for it,
but when she said it was tonight, it was like, "Oh..."
That's a taste of what it will be like.
Taking some photos isn't the same as actually being there.
I mean it might be we love it and the jobs are great
and the place we live in is great,
but then I just can't do it with Freya, you know.
It brings it home to you a bit, you know.
Lee is missing his daughter,
but later he'll find out just how much Freya misses him.
I don't want them to go.
Lee could find good work in New Zealand,
but if they're going to afford their dream home,
the Galloways will need to get a decent price
for their house back in the UK.
They own a three bedroom property in Liverpool
which they bought in 1993 for £58,000.
They hope it's worth £150,000, but has it held its value?
We sent round two estate agents to give a more recent valuation
in the current climate.
A little dark.
That's funny them saying about it being dark,
-because we need to paint it again!
That's our kitchen.
It's our kitchen.
Nice kitchen extension. Light and bright, spared no expense.
Fully fitted, great.
It's our garden.
OK, nice child-friendly garden, lots going on in it.
It's actually a lot larger than it looks at first.
It could do with tidying up.
'Extremely well-done bathroom.'
His and hers sink units. Small room but very well done.
I'm going to have a look.
The parents don't come up here very often!
Great playroom for them.
They've spent a lot of money on it, that comes through.
For a quick sale, £125,000.
The property's been really well-done.
It's an exceptionally nice property.
Looking at around £130,000
with a quick sale price of around £125,000.
I thought it was going to be...
Well, we knew it was about 150,
-but that was like a while ago, wasn't it?
The house prices have gone down a bit since we did the extension.
It would have been nice, a bit more, eh!
I think we're better looking at rental really, first,
but, we'll have to sit down and work out how much exactly
we're going to be able to afford each month.
The Galloways hoped for a much better valuation on their home.
They'll need to take a closer look at their entire finances
to see if they can afford the move.
We've prepared a comparison between their living expenses in the UK
and in New Zealand to find out which leaves them better off.
After the dramas with Lee's health,
the Galloways have had first-hand experience of New Zealand's health system.
Unlike the UK, it's part public and part private,
so although you don't have to pay for hospital care,
you do have to pay for a doctor's visit.
You have to pay for your GP visits over here.
The hospitals are like the UK, but £25 per GP visit.
And that's only the beginning.
Water rates, £50 per month.
It's 30, so it's dearer.
Karen and Lee make a detailed assessment of their daily outgoings,
including their groceries and utility bills.
They come to an initial grand total.
It's 530 a month in the UK
and 330-ish in New Zealand,
so it's cheaper the New Zealand monthly outgoings, but...
-You've lost a wage.
-You've lost a wage.
In the UK, Karen earns £6,000 as a part-time healthcare assistant,
but down under she would have to look after the children
and wouldn't work initially. There's more bad news.
Back at home we don't need to fork out for flights
to and from New Zealand, do we, so that's an extra expense
that we don't have when we're at home.
Plus we'd have Freya coming out,
-we wanted her to come out twice a year.
-Someone to bring her.
-So that's an extra couple of thousand a year, isn't it?
-So we're not coming to New Zealand to make it rich.
Karen and Lee wouldn't want to come all this way to live on the breadline.
Obviously it's going to be a strain if you're going to be struggling.
If you're struggling. There's a difference between paying everything
and being comfortable and that and trying to find the money.
It's going to be stressful anyway.
We struggled when we first started out.
It's just what we're going to have to do again, if we do it, if we come.
Karen and Lee won't go down without a fight.
It's time to vote on cost of living.
Do you know what? I was never expecting to come to New Zealand
and have megabucks.
We knew it was going to be a struggle.
And I'm going to say -
yay, New Zealand!
It's a vote for New Zealand after all.
If nothing else, the Galloways are positive thinkers
and believe they'll be able to adapt their lifestyle to living down under.
Despite their financial worries,
Lee and Karen are still determined to make this move work,
but there may be a sticking point in son James,
who's still undecided about the move.
James has a lot to lose with his biological father being in the UK
and Karen wouldn't go without him.
James, James, James, it's worrying me, to be honest.
I can just imagine James saying he's rather stay.
Yeah, saying I'll stay with me nan. Yeah.
He's not very impressed, is he?
I don't think there's that much gained in terms...
Like to justify the distance we're coming.
It's the other side of the world and it's not that much better.
Bring another shell. My thing about getting away...
-It was for the kids, wasn't it?
It started when I had James, so, you know, it all started with James,
for James, and to eventually get there
and James not want to come anyway it would be like a bit of a blow.
Perhaps a blast of the New Zealand outdoors
will give James a new perspective.
New Zealand's famous for its stunning landscapes and amazing natural beauty.
It's the reason many people come to visit and live.
We've arranged for the Galloways to go on a dolphin watching boat cruise,
heading west into the Tasman Sea,
which lies between New Zealand and Australia.
-That's just gorgeous, isn't it!
A move down under could give James a brand new start.
James had a really bad time growing up. He got bullied.
I just don't think there's any way that James could be on his own without us.
James's decision could ruin Karen's dreams of moving.
If I don't like it, I'd have to just, like, tell my mum.
It's just priorities, really.
And if I didn't like it anyway, there's not much she can do.
They're in luck. The dolphins have arrived.
Dolphins have always been considered porters of good fortune for sailors,
so could this be a good omen for James?
Actually a few here now. Harvey's enjoying it as well as me.
Karen hopes that this trip will help sway his decision to move.
Gorgeous, isn't it?
So what does James think about New Zealand, now?
Well, it's been an experience.
It's completely different to England and from what I've seen of it,
I do really like it. It's a bit of a change, like.
I feel more comfortable with it now than I did before I came over here.
It's definitely changed my mind a little bit,
but it's still just like all the stuff I'm leaving behind.
I'd miss my nan, my dad and all my friends and stuff
and it's just like the way you've been living,
it's a part of your past, where you live?
James isn't the only one, who would find the move hard.
I will struggle, I know I will. I'm in holiday mode at the minute.
I'll probably be in holiday mode for the first six months.
Then when you settle down and it gets normal,
you miss people and you can't just nip round somewhere.
But Karen knows if you don't try, you don't succeed.
I just think it's worth it for the kids to see them thriving.
When they meet their partners and they have their kids, you know,
we look at the bigger picture.
I think it will be beneficial coming over here.
I think it will be a nicer way of living.
It's time to vote for lifestyle.
Obviously, you don't get this in the UK, so I'm going to vote for...
After a shaky start, the Galloways are warming up to the idea of life down under,
but will hearing messages from friends and family back home
make the decision even harder?
Back in the UK, the Galloways have a close-knit network of friends and family,
but if they move down under, they'd be leaving them all behind.
We've arranged some messages from their loved ones back home.
Hello. Hope you're all having a good time.
If you do go, I'll miss you.
I couldn't ask for a better son-in-law.
He's the best dad I've ever known.
And I know while our Karen's got Lee,
she'll always be happy.
My dad's fun because we do lots of fun things together.
We bake pancakes and we play-fight.
We go swimming and we go out to the zoo.
If they do go, then I'd miss Poppy and Harvey
and Karen and James.
It's good to have a few brothers and sisters.
At first when he told me,
I was a little bit shocked, obviously.
I'm going to miss him absolutely loads.
We've grown closer together now than we've ever been, really.
Now he's got his bike, we spend a lot of time together now.
We go out on rides and stuff.
We have got a lot closer since he's got older now.
You're worried that'll go?
Yeah. I think that would probably go,
that would probably fade away when he does go away, yeah.
I think it will.
James is me first grandchild
and there's a special bond there, you know.
We've always been close.
The first couple of years he lived with us because, you know,
Karen didn't have her own home, so he lived in my home.
Like, Karen, you know, she's my daughter
and she doesn't want to leave him and she spoke to me about it,
and she said I'm doing it for the kids, you know.
James had a bad time in school and she doesn't want the two little ones to go through that.
It's just going to be so hard, so hard.
I really don't want them to go.
I knew they were going to think about going somewhere else.
Because Harvey and Poppy are only little, they don't know
that they wouldn't see me again
and they won't understand, because they're only little as well.
From a selfish point of view, do you want him to go?
Not really, no.
I'll miss him too much when he does go, I really will.
-Does he know how you feel?
-No, not really, no.
We've not really spoke like that.
Not really opened up to each other
and told each other how we feel and stuff, no.
Our Karen is an angel.
She's the best daughter anybody could have
and I'm going to miss her so much.
She's just my world.
We're so close, she's always there for me.
I'm going to have nobody now.
And I don't think I could do much more than...
Well, you said that it would be good
for when I'm older and I want to do college and stuff
but there is colleges where I live and they're good in Kendal as well
I was quite shocked cos I...
I don't want them to go.
If it wasn't for everyone that we're leaving behind, we would have done it years ago but...
It's going to be the hardest thing we've ever done and,
you know, it might be the worst thing we've ever done, you don't know...
I can't even...imagine the day we leave, can you?
No, I can't.
It's all so easy when you're just talking about it, you know.
It's when you see all the people you're leaving behind, then you start thinking about it...
You know, before we'd had a look at it...
What about you, James?
It just makes you think even more how hard it's going to be.
I've always thought that but seeing that makes it a lot harder.
We mightn't be able to live with it, we mightn't like it, we might miss people too much.
You know, when do you do it, when's the right time?
Me head is just all over the place at the minute after seeing that.
Seeing messages from loved ones so far away is never easy.
It's even harder when you're leaving a child behind.
The Galloways are almost at the end of their week in New Zealand
and it's nearly decision time.
Karen Galloway has always been desperate to move to New Zealand, where the outdoor lifestyle
will provide the perfect setting to bring up her children.
I just really want to do it.
Actually, at the minute I'm so excited, I could burst!
But the introduction to their possible new life started with a scare.
He's in the hospital.
I'm literally on my own.
When it came to finding their dream home, they were far from impressed.
They're a bit like our static caravans.
Starting again would be a massive risk.
Lee knows only too well how much his daughter Freya would miss him
and seeing messages from family back in the UK has really hit home how hard this decision will be.
When you see how upset people are, it brings home to you
how massive a thing it is you're doing and how huge it is
and how we're going to affect everyone's world. Not just ours, it's everyone you're leaving behind.
That was a real kick in the face cos being over here and seeing...
I didn't want to come at first and then I've come here and seen everything
and that's brought me back down to earth again.
Watching that video has hit James hard, to be honest.
Yeah, I think James feels torn, like we all do.
My head's all over the place at the moment.
I seem to be the one stuck in the middle of everything so it's quite hard.
For Lee, the trip has thrown up more questions than answers.
The Freya side of it, it's never going to be easy
and I think we've got to sit down and talk a bit more about it,
not just us as a family but sit down with Freya and discuss... if there's a right time to do it...
and is she going to cope, or are we going to cope?
It's not just Lee that's losing Freya, it's all of us.
She's been in my life since she was a babe in arms and it'll be a wrench for all of us.
The kids idolise her and I don't know how anyone is going to cope
with the guilt of leaving her. We don't know how she's going to cope with it.
If we see her break down, do we get to the airport and say, "No, we can't do it," and come back?
But it's time for the Galloways to make their final decision.
It's the hardest thing, the biggest upheaval we're ever going to do
and I just hope that everyone can cope with it,
but I think it's the right thing to do and I'm going to go for New Zealand.
I'm still weighing it up, but I'm going to give it a go. New Zealand.
Before I came, I had more...concerns than I do now.
I think I could quite easily settle here and I'm going to say New Zealand.
The Galloways have experienced
how traumatic moving to another country can be.
They've made a brave decision
and we wish them all the very best with their new life in New Zealand.
Join us next time when another British family have to decide
whether they're Wanted Down Under.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
Series in which British families, keen to trade in the British weather for the down-under lifestyle, are given the chance to sample what life would be like if they moved to the other side of the world.
Karen Galloway is desperate for to move her family to New Zealand. She's tempted by a brand new start in a beautiful fairy-tale setting. But after less than 24 hours into their trial week in Auckland, disaster strikes. This trip is almost over before it's even begun.