The Army’s drawdown will see many British families coming “home” from BFG. But for German spouses of British soldiers, the prospect of leaving their native land for the foreseeable future can be a daunting prospect. Manuela Floyd, who met her husband Paul in 1994 when he was stationed at JHQ, shares her feelings as she prepares to move back to the UK for good… 

 

WE currently live in Herford and because I am at “home” I am more reluctant to go back to the United Kingdom this time.

I have loved my five-year-old daughter experiencing all of the German traditions and customs that I had when I was a child; this will be difficult to maintain in the UK even with the best of intentions.

I do think that living in England is more expensive than here. I will miss having easy access to my family and speaking German. I am excited but a little scared too because I know that it’s going to be for good this time.

I will miss having easy access to my family and speaking German

It will probably mean us having to use our family holidays to travel back to see my family in Germany.

Better job prospects

I am looking forward to having more freedom to look for a job and more childcare options for my daughter, like breakfast clubs.

As a German national dependant of a UK Serviceman, there have been restrictions on my ability to work.

The Army’s departure will mean a lot of things to the Germans. They will certainly miss the economic boost that having so many soldiers and families living and spending in the community has brought.

They will also miss the cultural events and fairs that the Army has run over the years which have allowed us to learn a bit more about British culture. For further information on rebasing, see our special feature on page 22.

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