Meet the former Leeds student who moved to Canada post-lockdown for a lifestyle change

A young Canadian woman who studied in Leeds on an exchange is returning to her home country as a result of Covid-19.

By Press Association
Sunday, 13th December 2020, 9:30 am
Updated Sunday, 13th December 2020, 9:36 am
Maddy Fromm in Canada
Maddy Fromm in Canada

Maddy Fromm, 28, moved back to Vancouver in October with her British partner after six years in the UK.

She first moved over to study in Leeds for a semester before remaining in the country and living in London for five years.

She decided to return home for a lifestyle change precipitated by lockdown.

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Miss Fromm told the Press Association: “I did my exchange semester during my last semester of university in Canada and did it in Leeds.

“Afterwards I moved to London where I was based for over five years.”

Ms Fromm works as head of marketing operations for a digital marketing company and is still managing her UK-based team from Canada.

“My partner and I had been considering a move to Canada because we wanted a lifestyle change.

“With the shift to remote working during Covid and I think how continually successful my employer will be at supporting remote working, it seemed a good opportunity to make the change.

“It was extremely stressful due to Covid and all the work that goes into relocation, but I’m still very glad we did it.”

Ms Fromm explained that British and Canadian attitudes towards the coronavirus pandemic have been different, with Canadians tending to wear face masks more often.

“From what I have noticed there is a definite difference in attitudes towards Covid in the two countries.

“Just in the last month it seems that restrictions in Canada change more often, but that seems to be because they are proactive and put things into action quite quickly - so it’s definitely a rollercoaster.”

“People wear masks very frequently outside in public even though it’s not required. From my experience in London people in general were much more relaxed.”

International relocations brand MoveHub has reported that there has been a 32 per cent rise in British expats returning home since March.

However, the company says it has also seen a large increase in the number of people more-than-four-fold increase in British 18-to-24-year-olds leaving the country to work abroad since March.

From moving to the countryside to leaving the continent altogether, many people across the UK have taken the Covid-19 pandemic as an opportunity to make a few changes.

Voice and accent coach Nic Redman and her comedian husband Chris Cantrill are selling their house and moving to the countryside to start a creative retreat business.

The couple currently live in Manchester and will be moving to the Cumbria and Northumberland border, close to Hadrian’s Wall.

Mrs Redman, 36, said: “It was an opportunity really to grow our business and bring our son up in the country, which is how I grew up in Ireland.

“We realised in lockdown that it didn’t matter where we were for our jobs, so it prompted us to think long-term and make a few changes.

“It certainly wasn’t something we were planning on doing any time soon.”

The family will be moving closer to Mrs Redman’s parents and brother in an area she described as “very beautiful”.

“I think the only thing is that it’s been a little harder to move when you’re on your own and can’t call on pals to help out,” Mrs Redman added.

“The rest of the process has been pretty smooth. We’re really excited about it all and know that it will provide a wonderful space for creatives. It’s very beautiful.”