CHRISTMAS OFFER Subscribe to Cheshire Life today CLICK HERE

How Wilmslow and the North won over TV presenter Clare Nasir and Chris Hawkins

PUBLISHED: 00:00 23 May 2013 | UPDATED: 19:18 24 October 2015

Clare and Chris Nasir Keyhole

Clare and Chris Nasir Keyhole


Words by Janet Reeder photography by Kirsty Thompson

It was reputedly long faces all around when a move up north was announced to media folk used to a life in London. But for Clare Nasir and husband Chris Hawkins, last year’s BBC relocation to Salford turned into a golden opportunity.

In just under a year, the move to MediaCity UK paid off for the pair. Not only do they now have a stunning family home in Wilmslow, which their three-and-a- half year old daughter Sienna adores, but their careers have taken off in thrilling directions.

Clare, who gained fame as a GMTV weather girl and Chris as presenter of the Early Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 6 Music, admit that leaving their Georgian town house in Islington wasn’t in their masterplan.

Says Chris: ‘It was proposed by my boss at the BBC that I move here. I was given a good long time to think about whether that would work for us and it’s paid dividends. It’s been one of the best possible moves. But it is not an idea we would have had independently. We would not on any one day have thought “Shall we move to Manchester?”

‘We decided we were going to make this a proper move because colleagues of mine had done all manner of different things from commuting to renting to flat and house sharing.’

Adds Clare: ‘We had to make an emotional move so that we had a sense we had a home rather than a transitional period of our lives.’

In fact what Clare and Chris have discovered is that they can have the best of both worlds. Clare’s meteorological and science background made her the perfect presenter for the CBBC programme Fierce Earth a show that has taken her around the globe, she has blog in the Huffington post and is currently writing a novel. Chris has the top radio slot on Radio 6 as well as a career as a producer and music expert. And both are ambassadors for the Prince’s Trust.

Friends such as presenter Penny Smith and MP Gloria De Piero have been to stay and the actor Craig Charles just lives around the corner.

‘We went to dinner at Serafina and the owner drove us home. You don’t get that in London,’ revealed Clare.

‘I still commute to London, which is one of the reasons I chose Wilmslow because it’s got a great commuter route and even though I only work part-time there, it is lovely to have two centres. This life up here is just so open-air – we cycle, or stroll to country pubs and then we get a real blast of capital life. So I don’t have a sense that I miss London at all. Though I have to say the train route down there is ridiculously expensive!’

The couple knew around six months in advance they would be heading north and so began to do the rounds of the property hot spots.

‘We started making trips up to this part of the world but we were also looking at Hale, Didsbury, and Chorlton , places lots of BBC people have moved to,’ says Chris.

‘But my best man lives here in Wilmslow and we came to look around. He said he knew someone who was building a house and this was that house.

‘It was just superior to anything we saw,’ explains Clare of the three bedroom house built by family company Henderson Homes who celebrate their 60th anniversary this year.

‘We saw the plans and it was a building site but having lived in a house that was 150 years old in London it was a chance to be in somewhere in complete contrast to where we were before.

‘And we were able to re-draw the plans to suit what we needed, so this whole area at the back is a garden room. We needed a play area for Sienna and I needed an office so we created office space with a window looking out onto her play area which is brilliant and the garden studio outside which is Chris’s studio which we couldn’t have had in other places.’

The couple who met eight years ago when they were introduced to each other through Jamie Cullum’s agent in a bar prefer a laid-back life at home and it shows in the style which was created by local interior designer Alex Egan of Stanza Style.

‘She has this ability to just look at the house and interpret what you want to budget,’ says Clare.

‘She knew we wanted a maritime coastal feel in the kitchen area and something warmer in the living room, where we have gone for a Moroccan theme. We wanted Sienna to have a magical bedroom that is girlie, but not too girlie.’

Pictures on the wall include pop stars such as David Bowie, Chris meeting Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters and a montage of Islington where they used to live. It all adds a very personal touch to the place they can now honestly call home.

Henderson Homes: 01565 832 786

Stanza Style: 01948 860393

More from Homes & Gardens

The spirit of Rio’s Carnival came to Chester Racecourse as held its annual charity ball.

Read more
Thursday, November 8, 2018

Static caravan ownership numbers in Wales are some of the highest in the UK, we take a look at one of the most acclaimed caravan parks in the country which has become the holiday home destination of choice for the rich and famous.

Read more
Monday, November 5, 2018

The contemporary home that has it all, from location to a wealth of stunning amenities

Read more
Friday, November 2, 2018

Thursday 25th October 2018 saw the official opening of the new million-pound Head Office for local business Community Windpower Limited.

Read more
Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Expect all the luxury and high standards of a 5-star service with the advantages of a personal touch.

Read more

Two new Kütchenhaus kitchen showrooms have launched in Cheshire and a uniting passion binds the teams behind them both.

Read more

Didsbury resident Beth Travers founded her own business in defiance of the establishment’s ‘you can’t come in’ attitude…and now doors are opening all around the globe.

Read more
Monday, October 1, 2018

This Prestbury family home combines traditional characteristics with luxurious enhancements

Read more
Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Gordon Cooke’s artistic flair and horticultural know-how combine to create an unusual garden

Read more
Wednesday, September 26, 2018

As we head into Autumn, the change in season is all around us. From the leaves on the trees turning burnt orange and fiery red, to dark mornings and nights bookending our days. As we put the clocks back an hour to battle the darkness, here’s some top tips on how you can keep your home warm and costs down this Autumn.

Read more
Monday, September 24, 2018

A stunning new development of ten luxury lodges at Plas Farm Caravan Park, Nant Lodges is the ultimate in holiday home retreats.

Read more
Thursday, September 13, 2018

Wendy Radley looks back on an eventful first year of trade for the online flower boutique.

Read more
Thursday, September 6, 2018

Fragrant flowers, fabulous garden designs and some poignant exhibits meant the 20th RHS Tatton Flower Show was blooming marvellous

Read more
RHS Tatton
Monday, September 3, 2018

This grand lodge in wooded grounds benefits from historic charm and modern amenities

Read more

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today

Local Business Directory

Property Search