British families sample life down under. The Cook family from Wiltshire are divided about moving to Australia. Mum Jai is desperate to go but her husband Murray is not convinced.
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It's a huge risk to move your family
to the other side of the world in search of a better life
for your children, especially when none of them actually want to go.
The Cook family are divided about the benefits
of a new life in Australia.
Jai is desperate to move, but her family just don't share her dream.
I think if we don't do it over the next couple of years,
our time will have passed and I will regret it every day.
Jai's husband, Murray, is unsure.
Going into the unknown is quite scary. It's a big financial worry.
But the children are sure. They don't want to leave their friends
and life in the UK, so will Australia win them round...
How many would like to come and live in Australia?
-..or will the emotional pull of home prove too strong?
Leaving Dad and stuff and people like that.
It would break my heart if they went to Australia, it really would.
Australia's sunny climate and miles of beautiful coastline
has long been a draw for people looking for a new life abroad.
On average, almost 100 Brits emigrate to Australia every day,
but it doesn't always live up to their expectations
and roughly a third return home, but it doesn't stop people trying.
The Cooks may think Australia will give them the family life
they so desperately crave, but have they thought it through?
We're giving them a week to try out life Down Under
before they have to make the biggest decision of their lives.
Meet the Cook family. 36-year-old Murray,
his wife Jai, who's 38, their son Alfie who's 7,
and Jai's older daughters, 12-year-old Libby,
and Ellie who's 11.
They live in the village of Ashton Keynes in Wiltshire,
an area where Murray has lived all his life.
Murray is a plasterer with a successful business in the area
and whilst it's his job that will help them get their visa,
it's Jai's dream to move Down Under,
and she knows she's got her work cut out to persuade the family.
I'm definitely the driving force behind this idea.
It's something that I've always wanted to do and DO want to do,
and I think now is the right time in our life to do it.
It's just basically getting everybody else on board with the idea.
It's the desire for a better family life for the children
that's driving the plans for the move.
We're actually doing all of this for the children's benefit,
so that we can give them the things that we want to give them
but can't at the moment,
and they can't actually see the advantage of that.
-Maybe they don't want to spend more time with us.
That might actually be... We hadn't considered that!
For Libby and Ellie,
it will mean saying goodbye to their father Richard.
I would find it hard to leave my dad but I wouldn't just miss him,
I'd miss the rest of my family.
It's a huge emotional decision.
Leaving Dad and stuff and people like that.
For football-mad Alfie, the decision is simpler.
If I could take my team then I would want to go
because I could play football more often.
And Libby's got one equally impossible condition.
To get the biggest suitcase and just fit all my friends and family in
and bring them along with me.
Jai not only has to convince her children,
Murray has serious reservations as well.
Everybody I know is around this area, basically friends and family.
It would be very hard on both my parents but more so my mum.
It'll be different that they're not just down the road
and I can't just pop and see them.
Murray understands just how risky the move could be.
I know what I have here and I know the stability of the work here.
Going into the unknown is quite scary. It's a big financial worry.
I think he finds the risks very daunting.
He fears he won't be able to support the family
whereas if it was just he and I, I don't think it would be a concern.
It's an emotionally charged decision for the whole family,
which seems destined to leave someone broken hearted.
If we don't do it over the next couple of years
I'll be devastated and I will regret it every day.
So everything is at stake for the Cooks
as they face this life-changing decision.
But where in Australia should they go?
We could send them to Adelaide in South Australia.
This coastal city could be the perfect place for the Cooks
to find their dream home as it offers more affordable property
than other Australian cities.
But wages are much lower, meaning Murray might struggle
to match his UK income.
On the upside, with 10% of the population UK-born,
the Cooks would feel at home.
Perhaps a smaller city like Ipswich in Queensland
is more appropriate for a family used to village life.
With a population of 160,000,
Ipswich has good schools for the children
and Brisbane is only 25 miles away, giving plenty of work options for Murray.
And with new estates popping up all over, the Cooks should be able
to find a house they like.
Maybe a bigger city like Darwin
in the Northern Territory would be better.
It's one of Australia's fastest-growing cities
so Murray shouldn't have a problem getting work.
With plenty of beaches, parks and gardens,
it could be a perfect place for the children.
But on the downside, with the average house price of £357,000,
the Cooks may struggle to find their ideal home.
So where are we going to send them?
We decided to send them to Ipswich, a city just west of Brisbane.
The whole move will hinge on the kind of lifestyle
they can afford, so will they find their dream home?
I do like this property a great deal.
I'm not sold on it at the moment,
There's one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight properties
Eight properties just in your own garden. That's a heck of a lot.
And for Murray, his job is crucial.
Today is going to be a make or break day, I say.
How easy is it to pick up work around here?
It has been a bit of a quiet period lately.
But nothing compares to the emotional upheaval
of leaving loved ones behind.
Going for good is quite difficult.
It would break my heart if they went to Australia, it really would.
They have a soul-searching week ahead.
Based on what we have seen, we're going to vote for...
That was a bit of a shock... and it was!
After 22 hours, three flights, and nearly 11,000 miles,
the Cooks finally land at Brisbane airport.
The gruelling flight hasn't dented Jai's enthusiasm.
I'm quite excited, I'm looking forward to getting my teeth into
looking at the local area and having a look round to see what's on offer.
But Murray is less sure.
I'm a bit nervous. Certainly seeing about the work coming up
and the difference of what it's going to be for me.
Yeah, a bit nervous.
-I want to go to the beach.
-There you go!
Jai is sold on Australia straight away and tries to persuade
the children before they've left the airport.
It's sunny and warm and you just think
this is the reason people emigrate, because of the weather.
Wouldn't you like this kind of weather all the time?
No, I like the sun
but I'd get bored with it just being like this all the time.
Home for the Cooks during their week is in the Ipswich suburb of Silkstone.
The journey from the airport seems to have exhausted young Alfie.
A nice garden, kids. You can probably play out in front.
They'll be staying in a traditional four-bed Queenslander-style house.
I like the fact that there's two living areas,
there's one there for the TV and, like our book room,
you've got a separate reading area.
Yes, we've got two little living spaces to accommodate everybody, doesn't it?
After a quick tour of the rest of the house, Murray finds his favourite spot.
This is lovely, isn't it?
You can get up in the morning and walk out onto this every morning.
Cup of tea.
Listen to them birds. Beautiful.
We could even time it properly so we wake up before the kids
and have an hour's peace.
I don't think we'll be that lucky!
But as thoughts turn to the week ahead,
Jai knows exactly what she needs to do to secure her Australian dream.
I think definitely the children are the point of contention
at the minute. I would move here tomorrow given the opportunity
but I think the children still need to be convinced
that this is a good move for us.
Trying to persuade them would be
a harder task than I think the wife is letting on.
They've got their own minds and they're very strong in what they believe in as well.
So...yeah, it's going to be a difficult challenge.
Back in the UK, the Cooks live in this four-bedroom house
in Wiltshire, which they've renovated and extended.
They think their comfortable family home is worth £280,000
and they'll need every penny of that in Australia.
There's no doubt the Cooks will want to find the right home
to make this highly emotional move seem worthwhile.
But finding that dream house will depend on where they choose to live
and ultimately, how much they have to spend.
Life in the city could offer more work options for Murray
and plenty of activities for the whole family.
But with contemporary four-bedroom homes like this on the market
for around £360,000, the Cooks may have to move further out of town
to afford the space they want.
If it's life by the sea they want, they could try the Gold Coast,
but it would mean a 45-minute commute to work for Murray.
With average house prices around £290,000,
the Cooks may be stretched to find a house to match their UK home.
For a family used to village life,
a country suburb like Blackstone could be the perfect choice.
Traditional wooden houses built in the colonial style like this one
come with plenty of rustic charm,
and its nine acres of land offer them all the space they want.
Priced at £350,000, it's more than the Cooks' budget,
but there are plenty of other affordable options.
They're keen to look at more rural properties
so we are sending them to the country suburbs,
and they start their search in the nearby town of Ladley
with this four-bedroom Queenslander home.
Set back from the road, it has a large front and back garden.
On the market for £187,000, it's well within the Cooks' budget.
But is it what they're looking for?
Estate agent Gay Flynn is here to show them round.
Just have a look around, if you've got any questions just ask me.
I like those glass windows.
-I like that.
-Stained-glass windows, that's nice.
-I do like that.
Oh look, you can just come out in the morning and have a look.
Yes, this is nice. Coming out in the morning to this. Oh, wow.
What do you think? Could you see yourselves in these bedrooms?
-I'd want that one in there.
-That'll be mine!
-That'll be mine!
It's been sold!
Jai is keen to convince the children
but finding the right home is only part of the story.
But has Jai spotted a problem?
Gay? Is this the only bathroom?
Yes, it is. The toilet is separate, it's just off the family room there.
You possibly have an option that you could use that little room
off the bedroom to make an en suite. You've got the room to do that.
I love the staircase.
Oh, wow, this is a nice space. Shut all your kids away!
No, this could be our lounge area.
We could have the kitchen diner, and maybe...
-This could be the living space, yes.
-..a slob area.
And then down here, we could have as the lounge
because it's so much bigger to put the TV in.
In her rush to mentally move in, Jai's not counted the bedrooms.
Yes, I had forgotten there's only two bedrooms.
You'd have to have these two as bedrooms,
so you've got four bedrooms.
This would be the lounge and then upstairs,
you'd have the study/book room and the kitchen diner.
Murray knows how much the move means to Jai.
He's looking for the positives.
More room than what we're used to and it's ideal, really.
But it'll take more than a house to convince him
it's the right move for the family.
There's no bad points to this house. I would move in tomorrow.
Even though it's pink, I would move in tomorrow. It's amazing.
-I don't like the pink.
Yes, but I'd have to change the cosmetics.
Pink or not, it's a winner for Jai
but will property two prove as popular?
It's a four-bedroom, two-bathroom home in the suburb of Yamanto.
It would give the Cooks all the space they want.
Priced at around £225,000, it could be within the Cooks' reach
if they sell their UK home at the right price.
So as the children check out the garden,
Murray and Jai take a look at the house.
-Oh, wow. Oh, wow! I like this area.
-Oh, yes, very nice.
-I like this kitchen diner.
Yeah, I do. I quite like that. It's quite nice
because then you've got a family area within the kitchen...
-which is nice.
-I like the separate dining area.
The study's here already set up, isn't it?
-Study/living room kind of area...
-which is nice
and you're not losing the space from your lounge
by having your study there
-because it's big enough to accommodate both, isn't it?
Yes. Don't think I'd have the study in the lounge, though.
Jai can only see the positives but Murray has concerns.
See, even for a child's room, it's still a good size, isn't it?
-It certainly is, yes.
-It's got built-in wardrobes.
-You could still easily fit a double bed in here.
I'm not sure about the light on the wall. That's strange, isn't it?
With the fan in the middle of the ceiling,
you can't put the light there, can you?
I would worry about Alfie touching them fans
cos they are low enough, aren't they?
-He'd only do it once, wouldn't he?!
-Well... Once too many. After you.
Well, the house seems to be getting the thumbs up from Jai at least
but what about the garden?
It seems the children have found something they like.
-Got something to show you.
It's adult brave!
That's quite a nice size as well, isn't it?
It's not too big but it's not too small.
It's a nice size, isn't it, yes? Just to relax and refresh, isn't it?
But Jai's not sure about the added costs.
You'd have to pay to have it cleaned.
That's a self-cleaning thing there, isn't it?
That thing inside the water's doing it for you,
It sticks to the side and goes round.
-It doesn't get the leaves out.
-Well, no, it's just a net, isn't it?
Murray's found the perfect solution.
-It could be Alfie's Sunday morning chore.
So what's the verdict on this house?
The downstairs is probably more spacious on this property,
but I like the charm and character of the Queenslander.
I do like the downstairs.
The feel of the house is a bit more English home downstairs.
Yes, the overlooking closeness of all the other houses here
is a bit too much, I think.
Jai knows it's the children who hold the key to her dream life Down Under, so what do they think?
I'm not sure about everything at the moment, really.
That doesn't sound very hopeful but Jai still has time to win them over.
Maybe property three will do the trick.
Situated in a suburb of Woodend,
it's a five-bedroom open-plan home with a good-sized garden.
At around £325,000, it's well out of the Cooks' reach
on just Murray's salary, but if Jai got a job
they might just be able to stretch to it.
-I like the furniture.
-It's a nice hallway.
-I like this.
-Oh, wow. It's different.
That's really made good use of the space. You don't like that?
I'm not sure I like the kitchen and dining in the sitting room.
Jai knows she must remain upbeat about Aussie property
if she's to convince the family to move, but Murray certainly has his doubts.
Yes, it is a bit strange.
-Well, this is a good-sized room.
Oh, and you can walk straight out on the veranda in the morning.
Yes, very nice. Or we can sit here and watch cricket.
-That's what I was thinking. The view out of the front...
A cricket pitch. You could sit watch it all day.
But after a quick tour of the rest of the upstairs,
-they're still not sure.
-I do like this property a great deal.
I am concerned, though, about how we would fit all of our furniture
for a lounge, dining room and kitchen into this one area.
They both know familiar home comforts are important
to help the family settle in after such a huge move.
-OK...we can bring our furniture.
-That's an awful lot of extra space, isn't it?
So now not only is Jai moving her furniture in,
she's also got bigger plans.
You know what you could do with this area?
You could turn this into like a granny flat
for when the parents come to stay.
-So they'd have their own space.
-You hadn't thought about that, had you?!
We can get a caravan for that!
But as they check out the garden, Murray spots a problem.
If you turn around, how many properties can you see?
There's one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight.
Eight properties just in your own garden, that's a heck of a lot.
I'm not sold on it at the moment but it certainly working on me, yes.
I think it's quite a shock to come here
and see that the majority of the properties are open plan.
That could be difficult for him to get used to.
I don't think he's a big fan of it, really.
They seem to have different ideas about Australian homes.
While Jai fell in love with property one,
Murray was worried about the upkeep.
He liked the English feel of property number two,
but Jai preferred the charm and character of the Queenslander.
And while Jai can see the potential of property three,
its lack of privacy and location were a concern for Murray.
So how will they vote on the properties they've seen?
They've all been, in my opinion, very spacious,
very good value for money, and based on what we have seen today,
we are going to vote for...
Oh...that's a bit of a surprise,
I thought you would have gone one way or the other.
Come on, vote for England. Vote for England!
Mum, like you always say,
-you've got to let people choose in their own time.
-I'll work on you afterwards!
With only two votes for Australia,
it looks like Jai has her work cut out to persuade the family.
But all her efforts could be in vain if Murray can't find a job he likes.
Back in the UK, Murray has built up
his own successful plastering business with a trusted reputation.
As the boss, he sets his own hours,
but finds the pressure of work can also eat into family time.
But in Australia,
at least to start with, he'd be working for someone else.
He needs to feel comfortable and secure in his work
if he's ever to consider the move Down Under
and this is weighing heavily on his mind.
At the moment, driving to work, I'm a bit nervous...
Don't know what to expect, really.
Hoping that it's pretty similar to home.
I'd like to spend more time with the children.
That's primarily why we're looking at Australia
so we can have a better time with the kids.
Not working so long hours and night time and weekends, you know.
It's going to be really interesting.
Today is going to be a make or break day, I would say.
But before he can get his hands dirty, there's a setback.
The rain has halted work on the building site so Murray's off
to meet plastering boss Donnie Starley at a smaller job.
Keen to see what he can do, Donnie sets Murray to work straightaway.
And Murray needs to be sure that there will be opportunities
for him in Australia.
How easy is it to pick up work?
It has been a bit of a quiet period lately,
but we're picking up heaps of work again now,
and people are telling me that it's going to start picking up again.
I mean, before, it was hard to find renderers.
As I said, I had a couple come from England.
Got a couple of guys from New Zealand.
So yes, at the moment, it's a little harder but it is picking up again.
-The work is still there?
-Yes, the work's still...
-I've just put on two new guys this last week.
Well, that's positive. At least Murray could find work
but Jai knows their move to Australia rests on the children.
So in a bid to entice them Down Under, Jai takes the girls
to the local trampolining club.
If she's to keep her dream alive, she knows she must convince them.
It's really all about the children.
I think if it was down to Murray and I, I'd probably win Murray over
in a heartbeat and we could come but I think the children
are the sticking point. Unless we get them on board,
I think it's probably going to be a bit of a no-go unfortunately.
And she's not leaving anything to chance in her attempts
to persuade football-mad Alfie.
I think, actually, Alfie, now that he knows that it's feasible
to play football in Australia and it's not something
he has to leave behind,
I think that could be a real winning point for him, yes.
Well, the children seem to have had a good day. But what about Murray?
Before he can decide, he's keen to get some answers from Donnie.
What kind of hours would I be expected to work
if I came over and maybe come to work for yourself?
Working for me, I pretty much try and keep to the 40-hour week,
try not to work weekends. Some of my boys have family and stuff
-so they like to spend it with them.
But some of the bigger gangs, especially on the high-rises
-and that, I've heard of 60-70 hours a week.
So again it depends on who you're working for. A minimum of 40,
that's the normal kind of working week.
-Oh, right, OK.
-And then any kind of overtime after that.
What would, roughly, the annual salary be?
We pay hourly rate. 30 is your average
kind of spread across the industry, across the housing industry anyway.
That's all very positive.
Working full time, Murray could match his UK salary,
and Jai knows just how crucial financial security is to their move.
I know he wants to do well today
and I think, depending on the outcome of today,
it will have an impact on his decision
to do this as a full-time move.
So I'm really hoping it goes well. Obviously!
It's time to find out. How will Murray vote?
Unfortunately, I didn't get to see as much as I would have liked.
Because of the weather, we had to change jobs.
So I'm going to vote for...
Despite earning the same money in Australia, Murray would have
to give up the business and reputation he's worked so hard
to establish in the UK. It's a tough decision to make.
That's another blow to Jai's dream.
If they can't afford a better life Down Under,
there's no way Murray will make the move,
so it's crucial they get the right price for the sale of their UK home.
Jai and Murray bought their house for £113,000 nine years ago,
but with a large extension they've added,
Jai now thinks it's worth around £280,000.
It's crucial they get a good price. Their future plans rely on it.
We sent three local estate agents round to value the house
in the prevailing market.
Good-size room, nice having the down lighters.
Quite low-maintenance flooring makes it quite handy for a family
and also door through to the kitchen, so quite practical.
Some lovely big rooms, got some choice decor.
There's a few bits that need touching up, but overall, it's a good size here.
Nicely fitted kitchen, built-in appliances and good workspace.
A white suite, always popular, quite modern and contemporary,
lovely size bath, great for the family
and having a separate shower's very useful. Very handy.
A good-sized master bedroom.
A few things to tidy up round the edges again.
Well, this is obviously the son's bedroom, very keen on football.
I think to sell a house, it always is better to see a bit more paint
on the walls than posters but yes, a Chelsea supporter.
Interesting four-bedroom house,
obviously had a big extension in the past.
Would suit a family and certainly, it's got good-sized accommodation.
Location wise, it's a popular village and there is lack of availability in Ashton Keynes.
Ideally, inside could do with a little bit of decor
just to bring it up to top-notch standard.
Putting a house on the market,
I would suggest setting a guide price in the region of £265,000.
Figure wise, I'd probably put it on the market for about 240
and expect to get a figure of 230-235.
We would market the property at £215,000
although for a quick sale, we'd be looking for a figure of £205,000.
The 240, I thought was probably about right
and the higher end of 265 was quite surprising, really,
and obviously, there are bits to do around the house.
We could even go up a little bit around the higher mark.
But it's still slightly disconcerting
that you're looking at a £50,000 difference.
Well, between estate agents, yes.
I would have expected them to be a lot closer.
I think the other guys were probably about right.
The mid-range. They were a bit older, a bit more experienced.
The younger guy... Well, 250?
That's not a bad price for it, compared to what we paid for it.
I know it's a vast improvement on what we paid,
but it's still down on our expectations,
which then affects the property that we could afford in Australia.
Do you think we will have to get a house like... not one that we've seen,
more like a smaller one if we did come to Australia?
I think we'd still be able to afford the pink house,
which was one we liked best anyway, but what we're saying
is the other two which were more expensive were very nice
and had we preferred those houses,
we wouldn't have been able to afford it.
Well, we'll just have to wait and see what the cost of living is here
and compare it to what it is at home and see how we come out on that.
The property valuation has come as a blow to Jai
and her dreams of living Down Under hang in the balance.
We've provided a breakdown of the costs of living in Australia. Can they afford it?
-Mortgage is considerably lower.
The payment is considerably lower.
-We could manage with that a month.
It would probably be slightly higher,
noting that our property valuation is lower than that.
Even if it was double that, we could still afford that quite easily just on your salary.
-Crikey, look at that. What is that?
-Look at the difference in cheese.
I love cheese, and milk as well.
That's surprising. I thought milk would be down.
It's what we were saying.
-That groceries are more expensive over here than in the UK.
Our UK income and expenditure is based on us both working.
-The Aussie one is based on just you working.
So even if you did work, we would still be a lot better off, really.
So even if I didn't work, if I couldn't get a job,
we could still support ourselves.
Yes, just on my salary, couldn't we?
I could quite enjoy being a lady of leisure.
On the whole, it doesn't seem too bad.
It seems quite promising, really.
I would say that's actually been a pleasant surprise
because, based on what we'd seen,
I did think it would be more expensive to live
but the property would be cheaper.
So they could be financially better off in Australia.
Surely this is just the news to put Jai's dream back on track.
Based on the information we've seen,
it was pleasing to note that I wouldn't need to work for us
to survive quite comfortably in Australia.
And based on that, we are going to vote for...
-Oh, wow. I think that's the first match we've had.
I don't like the bit about you "don't need to work".
I just thought that was really nice, you being the primary,
you support us all and I'd be a '50s housewife!
It's not caveman times, you know!
Finally, they agree on something.
Jai and Murray can see an affordable future in Australia
but that's all just still a pipe dream
if they can't convince the children of the benefits of life Down Under.
So they're off to the animal sanctuary near Brisbane
where Jai hopes to build on her earlier success
with the trampolining and football.
Will getting the children up close and personal with Aussie wildlife help seal the deal on her dream?
With Jai convinced on Australian homes and finances,
she desperately wants the children to fall in love with the lifestyle.
Park ranger Jackie is on hand with tips on how to handle the animals.
OK, this is the food to feed the kangaroos
and what you do is you sprinkle a little bit on your hand,
and then hold your hand nice and flat
and they'll just nibble it out of your hand.
-Will they nibble your hand?
-No, no. You'll actually feel their whiskery mouths on your hands
so it's a bit ticklish sometimes.
You want some? Would you like some?
Oh, look at that one, he's wonderful.
The kangaroos are a big hit and have even got Alfie curious.
Why have they got black tails?
Good question, Alfie. I'm not sure why it's black.
I think it might have something to do with helping them camouflage
in amongst the grass, but the colour doesn't actually
have anything to do with how they function or how they move.
Some of Jai's enthusiasm seems to be rubbing off on the children,
but is her attempt to win them over really working?
I think he likes you, Ellie!
Now, that you've had the opportunity to stroke a koala,
how many would like to come and live in Australia?
It's a delicate balance for Jai. Push too hard
and the children won't vote for Australia.
With their hearts set on the UK, Jai is trying everything
to change their minds.
I love snakes, they're really nice.
Everyone thinks they're slimy but they're smooth.
So knowing that there are hundreds of snakes in Australia,
might that make you want to live here?
-170 or so, roughly.
-A bit more, yes.
Finally, Jai seems to be winning the children round.
OK, so is anyone up for a hold? Do you want to have it on your neck?
-Could you hold the head? I'm happy with the tail.
Libby seems keen but Murray's definitely not a fan.
I know you don't like snakes, baby, but if it's the only way
we can get Libby to live in Australia, we might have to buy one.
Oh, no. She can go live in the shed...or I will!
So, does Jai think the children are finally falling in love
with Australia, or is there still some convincing to do?
I think by the time we leave,
they will have made their mind up one way or the other.
I think Ellie probably is quite happy with the prospect
and even Libby and Alfie do seem a lot more optimistic about it.
When we left England, they were very much, "No, not interested, don't want to know."
Now that we're here, they both seem quite settled and quite happy,
enjoying the climate, enjoying the wildlife.
So I think there's still hope there that they might change their minds.
Is she right? How will they vote?
We've had a lovely day today seeing all the animals that are indigenous to Australia.
So based on that, we are going to vote...
-Well, that's different, isn't it?
-Well, we're getting closer.
-I've got a different decision.
We've got three "Australias" and two undecided.
That is a difference.
So on this score at least, England was out of the equation...
-which is good. We're getting there.
Well, that's one out of three.
At least it seems Ellie is onside, but if the Cooks are going to make
the move to the other side of the world, they'll have to cope
with the emotional upheaval of leaving loved ones behind.
So we prepared some messages from those back home.
Hi, Jai. Hi, Murray.
Hi, Murray, Jai.
Hi, Lib, Hi, Ell.
I hope you're having a great time out there in Australia.
Murray's a very thoughtful person. He phones...
I don't know what to say about him!
-He's very caring.
-Very, very caring person, yes.
There's not a day goes by without he doesn't phone me up and say "Hello, Mum, are you all right?"
OK, I'd better start with Libby as the eldest.
An absolute bundle of fun. Has been from that small to now,
obviously, much bigger. Smashing personality.
Ellie is just full of beans
and up for anything all the time.
I can't keep up with either of them, to be honest!
Libby's very exciting and she's like full of surprises,
and she can be very different but she's very funny as well.
Alfie's really into his football. Big Liverpool supporter.
He's got his football, he's happy.
Ellie is very funny. She makes me laugh. Um...
She cheers me up, and I like being with her.
Jai's bubbly, she's...um...
full-time job, husband, three children, three dogs.
Jai's one of those people, she's always there for you.
You could phone her at midnight and she'd answer the phone
and whatever you wanted to talk about, she'd talk to you
for two hours if you needed her. She's brilliant.
Murray will find it difficult leaving Cirencester. I think,
because he's got a close family
and he's got a lot of friends in the area. He's lived here all his life.
I've resigned myself to the fact
that if they want to go, it's up to them.
We'll back them all the way. I'll still be devastated if he goes.
I think it's a great opportunity to raise the children
in a great environment.
I think they just want to do what's best for the kids.
I'd miss Alfie just ringing up when he feels like it,
miss talking to all of them on the phone.
There's nobody like Murray in my eyes.
I know I've got my daughter and she knows how I feel,
but to me, Murray is the be all and end all of my life.
I could cope with going, thinking about them going
for a few years, enjoying the lifestyle and then coming back,
but going for good is quite difficult.
Those two girls keep the smile on my face every day,
I speak to them every day, I text them every day, and to imagine
that I could lose that,
it would break my heart if they went to Australia.
Murray, I hope you make the right decision.
Whatever decision you make, we will back you all the way.
I know you will make the right decision for your family
and I'll miss you loads.
I just want you to know that we've missed you lots and lots.
It's only a short time away but we've really missed you.
It would be really, really hard to think about you being out there all the time.
I just want what's best for you and what makes you all happy.
See you soon then. Love you lots, bye.
Are you OK?
Are you all right? OK.
It's hard, isn't it?
To see what we are leaving behind and how people feel about us.
What about you, Ellie?
What do you think about most when you watch that?
Dad mainly, and our friends, thinking about that.
If I said to you, "We've decided we're not going back to England,
"we're just going to stay here", what would your first reaction be?
I'm going back on the plane. I've got school in a couple of days!
What about you, Alfie? What did you think about that video?
-I want to go back to England.
-You want to go back to England?
Who did you miss most?
What about you?
I was quite surprised, actually,
because I thought I already knew everybody's views,
so I didn't think watching the video would upset me.
Seeing your family get upset is very difficult.
At the moment, I'm probably avoiding thinking about the parents.
My mum's had periods over the last year of not being so well
so it does bother me that I would be a long, long way away from them.
I don't know how to deal with that or think about that at the moment.
If I decided to go, I've really got to give it a lot more thought
on how it would affect me, and my mum and dad, really.
Well, the Cooks have had their ups and downs this week
and with Murray firmly on the fence, Jai's hopes rest with the children.
But if they can't bear leaving their friends and family behind,
her aspirations of a new life Down Under will be over.
The move was always Jai's dream.
I'm definitely the driving force behind this idea.
And Australia was everything she wanted.
There was no bad points to this house. Even though it's pink, I would move in tomorrow.
But she knew getting the children on board would be very difficult.
-I want to go back to England.
-You want to go back to England?
Work was always an issue for Murray,
but in Australia, the reality of leaving loved ones finally hit home.
It does bother me that I would be a long, long way away from them.
For Jai, everything rests on her family's final decision.
I think if we don't do it, I will regret it every day.
So how will they vote?
Has she done enough to persuade them
or is her dream about to be shattered? It's time to find out.
We've had some wonderful experiences, met some lovely people,
and based on that, we are going to vote for...
Well, that's a mixed bag, isn't it?
You're the only one who sticks to Australia again.
I think it's long enough for me to realise what we we've got here.
A little bit more time then I could probably give you a better answer, actually.
A little bit more time and...you never know.
After that final blow destroyed Jai's hopes of a life Down Under,
what does the future hold for her?
It was very disappointing. I was really hoping that this opportunity
to come over and visit Australia would actually show them
the benefits of living here and could actually show them
how wonderful things could be and what sort of life we could have.
As far as I'm concerned, there's actually no negative
about coming here, so for the rest of the family to see
nothing but negatives, or so it seemed to me...
Yes, it was a little bit disheartening, to be honest.
I would say that, no, the dream isn't over for me
and I will probably keep bringing it up for discussion, keep trying
to convince the family that it's the right thing for us,
and hope that, at some point, they give in gracefully
and we can come to Australia.
My goodness, it's been quite a week for the Cooks.
It seems Jai's Australian dream is over.
But who knows, she may still be able to persuade them.
Join us next time when we follow another British family
who are Wanted Down Under.
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]
The series in which British families are given the chance to sample what life would be like if they moved to the other side of the world.
The Cook family from Wiltshire are divided about the benefits of a new life in Australia. Mum Jai is desperate to move but her husband Murray and their three young children are not convinced. Jai is hoping the experience of a week in Oz will change their minds, otherwise her dream of a new life down under could be over.