Dawn French has lived in Cornwall for 14 years, and is such a fan of the region she filmed the majority of her ITV series, The Trouble with Maggie Cole, there too. The comedian previously said that she is much happier since moving out of the city to start a new life by the sea, where she lives in a £3million coastal mansion with her husband Mark Bignell.
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Speaking to Fearne Cotton on her Happy Place podcast in 2018, Dawn admitted she began to find city life "overwhelming" before her move. "My problem with being in busy places... I find that I get quite upset by constantly seeing difficult things," she said. "So I've been a bit cowardly in a way because I find it... when I go to London and I see, I look at people's faces and I think 'Oh, she's cold. Oh that person hasn't got anywhere to go tonight. Oh God, they're dealing with something, oh God, he looks like he's off his face, oh dear'. And my insides are just upset all the time."
Dawn French lives in this Grade II-listed mansion in Cornwall
Dawn said she now felt she isn't suited for busy city life. "I think I'm not meant for a city... that isn't the real me. The real me is quiet." The 60-year-old moved to Cornwall with her former husband Sir Lenny Henry and their daughter Billie in 2006, and stayed there following their divorce in 2010. However, she admitted she ended up arranging a tour with her comedy partner Jennifer Saunders especially to foot the bill for renovations at their property.
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"It was in a bit of a state and I thought 'Oh, I'm going to need a bit of dosh to do this up', she said. 'I called Jennifer and I said, 'Look I've seen this place and I know I want to live there but we've got to go on tour, how about it?' And she said something like 'Oh yes, I'm doing my conservatory, OK yes.' And that was seriously how we made the decision to go on tour."
Dawn French said she found city life overwhelming
Dawn now credits the Grade II-listed mansion for keeping her "calm", telling Fearne: "There is, without a doubt, beauty here. I can do nothing but connect with that. It makes me calm, it makes me happier and it sort of enthuses my mind with better ways of thinking."
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