A dog groomer from Somerset who visited Whitley Bay for the first time and then decided to relocate her business 360 miles north hasn’t “pawsed” once about her life changing decision since arriving in the North East.

Tracy Scott (50) ran Castle Canines, a successful business overlooking Dunster Castle near Minehead. She had a huge client list with full order books and led an active social life being a member of the local RNLI crew and a rugby coach. But a short holiday break in Whitley Bay changed the course of her life embarking her on a new business and social journey.

“I came up to visit a friend in October and fell completely head over heels in love with the place. Whitley Bay is just by far the friendliest place I’ve ever visited in my life and on the day that I was due to fly back to Bristol, I made the age-old mistake of looking in an estate agents window.”

What Tracy saw was a property in the town with an adjoining building that was perfect for her dog grooming business. With no hesitation she put an offer in and found herself the owner of a new home at the opposite end of the country.

The salon has a huge stainless-steel bath which is big enough for her regular Saint Bernard client, an electric lifting table and a commercial dryer specifically for dog grooming which gets the job done as quick as physically possible.

Tracy’s path to her dog grooming business wasn’t at all connected with man’s best friends as she started life as a police officer in the Hampshire Constabulary before becoming an army wife and living in Germany with her (now ex) husband. Looking to occupy herself she trained as an electrician and a swimming teacher. Later, needing to spend more time with her children she looked for a local job with flexible times and she started dog walking. Her love of dogs blossomed and led to her opening Castle Canines when she divorced and moved back to Minehead.

“Things are all falling into place for me now,” said Tracy. “My son is going to Glasgow University which is only a few hours away as opposed to 9 hours from Minehead and I’m really impressed at how accessible Tyneside is with metros, trains, and airports so easy to get to.