A couple recently crossed the world to settle in our town - and they're loving it! 

Annie Zhang, 41, and Kevin Yuan, 42, travelled together with their children 6,000 miles to buy their first home.

A new role for IT Engineer Kevin, combined with the desire to explore and experience a new way of life, brought the couple to Reading which offered to them the perfect combination of green and open spaces, and quick, convenient access to amenities and city life.

Ms Zhang comments: “In Shanghai, we rented a three-bedroom apartment in a high-rise apartment block which could get crowded at times.

"We lived on the ground floor, but it could get very noisy as we lived near a basketball court which you could hear at night.

"We wanted to find a new home away from city life where we could raise our children and slot into a readymade community.”

The family purchased a three-bedroom house for £540,000 at waterside development Green Park Village, on the outskirts of the town.

Ms Zhang says: “We didn’t look anywhere other than Green Park Village. As soon as we arrived, we fell in love.

"There is a large Chinese community here, which made us feel at home straight away. The neighbourhood ticks every box on our list of reasons to move to the UK.”

Connectivity was a huge factor in the family’s decision to move to Reading.

Kevin’s new job is just a nine-minute lakeside stroll from their new home, providing a good work/life balance, while trains from the new Reading Green Park Station, a five-minute walk from Green Park Village, provide access to Reading town centre in just six minutes.

From here, trains reach London Paddington in just 23 minutes on the Elizabeth Line.

Ms Zhang continues: “We don’t have a car so having regular bus and train services so close by makes it perfect for getting about to Reading town centre or further afield.

"And, having Kevin’s workplace within walking distance is idyllic. Our son attends the on-site primary school Green Park Village Academy, which is also just a few minutes’ walk, and he plays football for the local club.”

Reading was named one of the best places to work and live in 2022 and 2023.

Reading itself is one of the South East’s most important business hubs – offering all the lifestyle benefits of urban living - and its superb connections into London are further improved by the arrival of Crossrail.

Reading is renowned as an excellent retail and entertainment destination and one of the UK’s top technical hubs for IT, telecoms and digital businesses. A host of international companies are based in Reading, including global brands Microsoft and PepsiCo.