Paul and his partner, Natasha Melling, had been renting in the Warwickshire town of Tiddington for 10 years, but their family were beginning to outgrow the property and they needed somewhere larger and more permanent to settle.


Paul comments: “My sons are 7, 10 and 12, so we were running out of space in our rental home quite quickly as they grew. We used to own an Airbnb, but once lockdown hit, we obviously stopped getting bookings and the future looked very uncertain. We knew we wanted to buy our own home at some point, so we thought we’d cut our losses, sell the Airbnb and put the money towards getting our own place.”

Paul and Natasha Melling have recently purchased a 25% share of a four-bedroom detached house at Birnam Mews, from housing association and developer L&Q. A long-time resident of the area, Paul watched Birnam Mews being built every step of the way. He says:


“Birnam Mews was literally being built at the bottom of my garden, so I was aware of it from the very beginning. One day during lockdown, I was out walking the dog and the builders had just opened a new public pathway that goes through the development, so I decided to take a stroll through and have a look at the houses. I walked past this one house and thought to myself ‘that would suit us nicely’, so I went straight home, googled ‘Birnam Mews’ and registered my interest.”

“Once we’d sold our Airbnb, the whole process was really straightforward. The Sales Associate, Lisa, was always on the phone to answer any questions we had, and her team in the office were very helpful and thorough. It was an extremely smooth process.”

Speaking about his new home, Paul says that having more space was hugely important to him and his family. He says:

We have a four-bedroom detached house, which makes a massive difference to us. The boys now all have their own bedroom, plus their own tv room, and they’re totally over the moon. We’ve always lived in these little terraced houses or tiny cottages, so to go from that to this is amazing. The kids keep saying ‘we’ve got the soft stuff’ – which means carpet! We’ve never had a carpet before!”


“A big thing that we love about the house is the fact that it’s brand-new and clean – you don’t get that with rentals, that ‘new’ feeling. We could’ve bought a property that needed doing up, but I’m a chef and I have three children, so I just don’t have time for that. With Birnam Mews, we were able to move straight in and everything was all finished and pristine.”

Already familiar with Tiddington and the local area, Paul explained what him and Natasha loved about the Birnam Mews development.

“There is a real community feel at Birnam Mews. We’ve met all the neighbours already and they’re so friendly – we got given four bottles of prosecco from neighbours on the day we moved in! The really nice thing is that there are four people in the houses next to us at Birnam who all used to live on our old road, so we already know them well!

Looking to the future, Paul has his sights set on owning 100% of his house and watching his children grow up at Birnam Mews. He concludes:

“The plan is to staircase to full ownership. We took advantage of the Stamp Duty Holiday and paid the remaining stamp duty fees all upfront, so that will save us a lot of money when it comes time to staircase.”


“We’re definitely staying for the foreseeable now, at least until the boys are all grown up and have moved on. This will be our permanent family home.”