Here’s your chance to find out a more about the incredible ladies in our Regional Reporter Team with our Spotlight Interview Series.
Our Team bring you stories from their patch of the UK sharing their hobbies, recommendations and more about life in the country!
Meet Sarah our Scotland Reporter…
Tell us a little bit about yourself, where you live and why you love it.
My name is Sarah, SJ to those a little bit closer to home, and I live in the Scottish Borders with my horse, our Romanian rescue dog and let’s not forget my long-suffering, non-horsey other-half, Arran. I moved to the Borders in 2008 to attend Herriot Watt University, studying fashion design with full intentions to give up the country life and move to London to work for one of the big fashion houses post-graduation. Long story short, I was not too fond of the London underground, couldn’t live without a horse and fell in love with a Borders man, so 13 years later, I’m still here.
The bonnie Borders (that’s the bit of Scotland nearest England for anyone who hasn’t been before) is pretty much exactly how you would picture it; there are rolling hills of green, long rivers of blue and more land and plenty of mud-a-brown at the moment! Despite the dramatic winter weather, the Borders is pretty much the perfect location for a horse-loving, dog-walking, wine-drinking (the Edinburgh bars are just a short train journey away for post-lockdown nights) Scottish gal.
What are some of the favourite places in your region? Your favourite days out, places to eat…anything goes!
One of my absolute favourite places in the Borders is the very top of the Eildon Hills. Whether you climb the immense 1,385 ft peak (that’s one of three, by the way) on foot or horse-back, the view from the top spreads for miles and is gorgeous even on an overcast morning. During the first lockdown, my partner and I walked from our house to the middle peak, also known as “The Steepest One”. it took all morning, and it was pretty much uphill the whole way there, but it was an excellent walk, and the picnic at the top made the climb worthwhile. If there’s food involved, I’m there!
Besides walking, if it’s horses you’re into, then we Borderers are very fortunate to have Olympic Medallist Ian Stark’s riding centre on our doorstep. I train with Ian himself on a semi-regular basis for show jumping and dressage, and they run all manor of competitions in their indoor school throughout the year. They also have riding centre ponies on site for those who want to book lessons and hacks around the Selkirk hills.
What inspired you to become a Regional Reporter for the LCC?
I heard about the Ladies Countryside Community through Rhiannon Bates, a regional blogger from Yorkshire and a very inspirational lady I had the pleasure of meeting at a business retreat in the Cotswolds last Autumn. She told me all about this supportive team of country ladies, and I just had to get involved! I love writing; I find putting my fingers to the keyboard and getting words down on paper (or a Macbook, it’s 2021, after all) very freeing and something I enjoy. You might have noticed from my articles that I very much write how I talk, and I pretty much never shut up, so generally, the words come to me fairly quickly.
Tell us about what hobbies you have and how you like to spend your free time.
As I’ve mentioned, I am an avid horse rider. I’ve owned my beloved Supercob for eight years now, and together we have enjoyed an amateur career in British Eventing, working our way up to BE Novice which is plenty big and scary enough for me. I’m by no means world’s best rider, nor do I have a desire to be a champion eventer; I just love riding, training, competing and everything that comes along with that. It’s a bit cliché, and every single horsey-gal will have said it once in their lives, but horse riding and ownership isn’t a hobby for me; it’s a lifestyle. Luckily, I’m in the perfect place to live this life, and with spring approaching, the enjoyment factor is set to increase tenfold!
Do you have any top tips for juggling living and working at home?
First and foremost, have a designated working space away from your living space. I’ve worked from home long before the word “lockdown” was integrated into our everyday vocabulary and having my own office space does wonders for my productivity. You don’t need a whole room, just a little desk that you can call your own tucked in the corner somewhere. Do not try to work in front of the TV; switch your favourite radio station or playlist on in the background and hit those emails running. Remember to take regular breaks, and if you need to take an hour off to get some fresh air and regroup, then do it. Working from home is hard, so cut yourself some slack, drink plenty of water and start ticking things off that to-do list!
Find Sarah Here:
LCC Founder & Creative Director
Hello and welcome to the LCC. I'm a rural-loving mum (of the horse, human and dog variety!) living in Cheshire in the North West of England. For as long as I can remember I have always had a fascination with the great outdoors. Eager to understand the 'how' and the 'why' of the world around us. I created this platform where we can connect and share our love of the the countryside and rural life.