Couple move to uninhabited island and avoid COVID pandemic entirely

Moving to an uninhabited island just two days before the first national coronavirus lockdown seems to have paid off for one British couple.

Couple move to uninhabited island and avoid COVID pandemic entirely: The couple, Luke and Sarah Flanagan, moved to Owey Island off the coast of County Donegal in Ireland on the 14th March. The island, which has no running water, electricity or gas, has become a safe haven for the couple who hadn’t planned on staying so long.

They had originally made the move to find a slower pace of life but have actually managed to dodge the effects of the pandemic completely. Luke, who is 34 and a joiner by trade, said “It’s been really weird and strange hearing about everything that’s happening while being isolated on this little island. As you can imagine, we haven’t had to worry about social distancing.” The Flangan’s, originally from Leeds, West Yorkshire, had moved to the the tiny island after seeing an advert for tenants of a small cottage there and decided to take a year off work.

There are only a handful of properties on Owey, and they are only occupied in the summer months. Also they do not have the luxury of any shops or schools. Luke and his wife Sarah, 36, use coal fires to keep warm, cook using gas bottles and collect rain water to wash themselves and their clothes. They raise hens to get eggs and and also grow their own food.

Luke said “The experience as a whole has been incredible. The pace of life is so slow but it’s lovely, we spend our days out walking with the dogs, growing our own food and learning new skills. It’s not for everyone but we have loved it.”

He went on to say “Over the summer the community feeling here is great. But as soon as autumn started coming in everyone left and we were left on our own, luckily we were well prepared to cope thanks to the help of other people.” The only way on and off the island is by boat to a neighbouring island that has a bridge connection to the mainland. Sarah said “My overall thoughts about our time on the island are how incredibly lucky we are to be here. We have both learned so much and had experiences I would never have even imagined.”


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