Why I Live In Norfolk: 'There is always somewhere new to explore'

Mason Burrell, new homes manager at Brown & Co, next to a photo of Happisburgh lighthouse in the sun

Mason Burrell, a self-confessed 'Norfolk Boy', loves life in the county - Credit: Brown&Co/Getty Images

As part of our new series, we're asking YOU why you chose to move - or stay - in Norfolk.

This week, Mason Burrell, new homes manager at Brown&Co, tells us why, after being born in the county, he has never left.

Mason Burrell, new homes manager at Brown&Co in Norwich

Mason Burrell, new homes manager at Brown&Co - Credit: Angela Adams/Brown&Co

How long have you lived in Norfolk?
I am a true Norfolk Boy, having been born at the family home in Hethersett, Norwich, at a time when home births were the norm.

My Mum, bless her, reminds me every birthday that the midwife shouted out of the bedroom window to her daughter to ‘get the potatoes on’ as I was on my way. To this day I have no idea why the midwife’s daughter was in our front garden.

What were your first impressions?
Having lived in Norfolk all my life, it is easy for me to take everything it has to offer for granted. We have stunning beaches, wonderful countryside, beautiful woodland and a historic city. The first impressions, which I know I always take for granted, were the big skies, something I particularly miss when I am away from Norfolk.

Why did you choose to stay?
During the 1980s, many of my friends made the decision to head for the bright lights of London to make their fortunes. I sometimes wonder where I would be if I had followed. But deep down my roots have always been in Norfolk.

Bright blue sky over Happisburgh lighthouse in Norfolk, UK

Mason says his first impression of the county was its big skies - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

I’m not saying that, if asked by our managing partner to run the Brown&Co Caribbean office for a few years, that I wouldn’t be tempted... but I know I would always return to my family in Norfolk.

What was your first house like?
The first house that I ever bought was a clay lump, semi-detached cottage just outside Attleborough. It needed full modernisation and all my evenings and weekends were spent chipping plaster off the walls or taking down ceilings.

I was only in my late teens and was as much use as a chocolate fireguard when it came to anything that involved a power tool. Luckily, I survived the process, but this was solely down to the guidance and help of my family. 

Admittedly, and possibly down to my practical abilities, this was the only period property I have ever owned. 

My speciality is new homes and one of the most enjoyable aspects of my job is seeing a property grow through the many stages of construction to completion, which probably explains why I myself buy new homes to live in.

View over Norwich market and towards the castle in Norwich, UK

Mason says Norfolk has so much to offer, from its stunning beaches to its historic city, and that it is sometimes easy to take it all for granted - Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Have you stayed in the first area you moved to, or have you moved again since then?
I love Norfolk, and although I have lived in the Broadland area of Norwich, my heart always comes back to South Norfolk. 

As you can imagine, my profession requires me to research many areas and properties within the south-east and while doing this there are not many areas in Norfolk that I wouldn’t consider moving to if it wasn’t for my love of the South Norfolk countryside where every weekend my wife and I are taken for a walk by our miniature Dachshund.

Workman holding a brick and tools in front of a brick and flint new build home in Norfolk

Mason says he has only ever owned one period property in his life - his preference is new homes - Credit: Archant

What do you think has changed the most throughout your time here?
Definitely the number of new homes. It is a good thing that Norwich is growing as it gives the younger generations the opportunity to own their own homes.

What do you like most about life in Norfolk?
There is always somewhere new to explore.

What advice would you give to someone looking to relocate here?
Do your research! Most people who move to Norfolk stay in Norfolk and rarely move far from where they originally buy, so don’t just look on property websites but please come into our offices and ask as many questions as you like.

You can contact Mason Burrell at Brown&Co in Norwich by phone on 01603 629871 or by email at mason.burrell@brown-co.com.

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Want to tell YOUR story? Get in touch with me by email at rebecca.macnaughton@archant.co.uk for a chance to be featured and share your story of living in Norfolk.