These prejudices were hard to break down. Barclays Spread Eagle magazine reported that trips were organised around the area “to try to show southerners that the north is not all smoky factory chimneys and people who speak a foreign language”.
Jeff Nash, billed as a Driver/Messenger, said: “We have done very well out of the move, but if I could have got the same advantages in London, I’d have stayed there.” Linda Clinton, Systems Analyst, missed “the variety and ease of shopping I had in Crawley”. Eric Nightingale, Controller of General Services, found that “the only advantage is that the roads are nearly empty and this saves on petrol”, while Olive Heywood, a Programmer, was enjoying the area but not Radbroke Hall itself: “I miss the air conditioning, and there’s a leak in the roof that’s been here for five years apparently and they can’t seem to put it right.”
A big draw for relocated staff, however, was affordable housing, quoted as “between £10,000 to £16,000 [£130,000 to £205,000 in 2017 prices] for a four-bedroomed detached house”.