The first residents of the newly built Macleay Village have moved into their independent terrace villas and are on their way to enjoying the resort style living the retirement village offers.
Judy Raymond moved to Kempsey from Bellingen when she was six years old and spent most of her younger years growing up in the Macleay and attending school in Kempsey. She moved away in her 20's and has always known she wanted to come back here to live.
"I had been where I was living in Bellingen for 36 years and thought while I can still move I should do it," Judy said.
"I used to drive past this area of Frederickton when I worked in Kempsey and we lived in Coffs Harbour and I always wanted to live here, it's such a beautiful area.
"I always wanted to move back to this area."
Judy moved into her terrace style villa on November 22 and said she has enjoyed settling into her new life.
"The view and the atmosphere is what I was looking for and it offers a secure place where I can feel comfortable.
"The lifestyle here is what really suited me and is the main reason why I wanted to move here."
Macleay Village offers a number of services tailored for its residents including a wellness centre, a gym, pool, coffee shop, men's shed, library, hair salon, barbecue area, games room and restaurant.
Village manager Emma Ford said they want to create a sense of resort style living for residents.
"It's really about developing relationships and creating a community within a community," she said.
"Residents still live independently here but have everything close by."
Norma Sinclair, much like Judy, grew up in Kempsey before moving away when she was young.
"Before moving in here I had been living in Sydney for the past 15 years and it's just too busy," Norma said.
"It feels like I'm coming home. My son and sister live in the Macleay and having them close by is nice."
Norma said Macleay Village has been very welcoming, and even let her bring her dog Chiko.
"Bringing little Chiko has made it all a lot easier for me, the staff here have been really friendly and accommodating."
Judy and Norma didn't know each other before moving into Macleay Village and said they have enjoyed getting to know each other.
"We both have a lovely view of the water and landscape, it's beautiful," Norma said.
"We didn't know each other before moving in here, and it's been nice talking together," Judy added.
Both Norma and Judy are looking forward to the village growing when more residents move in.
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