The Moody family from West Felton, have today swapped their rural life for the call of the unknown, as they embark on a three-year-long trip to explore the wonders of the world.
From the golden beaches of Morocco, to the Great Lakes of North America, the family have no permanent destination in mind – and are excited to soak up the culture of local communities.
Ben Moody and his wife Emma, are undertaking the journey as a way of spending more time with their young children – Archie, who is 12, Matilda, who is 10 and Lola, who is 8. Ben was away from home a lot when he was a member of the British Armed Forces and missed much of his children’s young years as they were growing up.
He said: “Emma and I thought, ‘what can we do that enables us to spend more time with the children but how can we give them perspective that they wouldn’t get in the classroom’? Once we saw how adventurous and exciting this was going to be we thought 12 months isn’t going to allow us to do everything we wanted to do with the children, so we extended this to three years.
“The children are very excited; it’s taken us two years to build the vehicle doing it from scratch and we could only big up an idea to them for so long before they got bored.
“To keep them motivated we have tried to get them involved as much as we can, so they were painting and crafting designs and so they were invested in the project. They learned some really important skills – and now the RV is finished and they can see the light at the end of the tunnel.”
The purpose-built motorhome has been built from scratch, after they bought it in relatively poor condition in 2021. It has since been adapted to cater for a family-of-five’s needs, using locally-sourced materials – recycled and reused where possible. There’s also a kennel for family dog Piccola.
Ben and Emma had no prior experience and designed everything spontaneously with what they could lay their hands on themselves, with a little help from friends.
The children will be homeschooled throughout the trip and will learn first-hand about different cultures, their history and heritage, in a way that is restricted in a classroom setting.
“Home-schooling is one of the most important things for us and Shropshire Council’s home education team have been so supportive and really encouraging,” Ben added. “We see this as an opportunity to show the world to our children and provide an education that is sensory in nature and cultivates curiosity and critical-knowledge that a classroom does not provideStarting in Europe, the family will travel to Morocco by the end of spring, before taking the ferry across to North America and then heading south along the pacific coast to Patagonia in South America.
The new Schengen rule, due to Brexit, has posed challenges for the family as it means they can only spend a maximum of three months in Europe at a time.
To get around this, they will move to outlying countries – such as Turkey – before moving back in to Europe.
“The Schengen agreement was the biggest obstacle or hurdle for travelling in Europe, so in terms of planning we have had to keep it open-ended.
“We have no defined route other than travelling in an anti-clockwise direction and we are really taking it as it goes, but the lovely thing is that time is our own.
“If we wish to spend another month in say Morocco then we are going to do that.”
It is hoped that by the end of the three years that the family will find a little corner of the world in which they would like to call ‘home’.
It could be as far as Canada or New Zealand, they don’t yet know, but they will be documenting their journey on social media for anyone to follow along.
You can follow their adventures on Instagram @ironcrumbandco