Is Penarth somewhere that young people can easily move to? Is housing affordable for those who have just started working? To get to the bottom of this, Olivia Mowl spoke with Emily Herniman a young professional who moved to Penarth a few years ago from Bristol.

AFTER the turmoil and upheaval of the Covid-19 pandemic, Emily Herniman, 24, decided to make a move - and relocated to the Vale of Glamorgan seaside town of Penarth to be with her partner.

The couple initially found it difficult to find affordable housing, so stayed with family while they looked for their own place.

Ms Herniman said one of the biggest surprises was how difficult it was to find work.

As an avid reader, she really wanted to work for a bookstore or at the library but found competition for the positions was fierce.

Penarth Times: Emily HernimanEmily Herniman (Image: Supplied)

"I found this surprising for a small town," she said.

Ms Herniman had previously worked as a barista, and eventually found employment at an independent café. However, this wasn’t the right fit for her, so she continued to look for work elsewhere.

She now works happily as a full-time employee at Coffee #1.

"They have really taken care of me and helped me progress in my career as a barista," she said.

Once the couple has both found full-time work, they were able to move into a flat in the centre of town - paying £1,000 rent a month, not including bills - below the average for the town of £1,542 a month. But even with two full-time paycheques, it is still a stretch for them to afford living in the town, especially given the cost-of-living crisis.

"We can’t afford a car, so we have to live in central Penarth so we can both commute to work," Ms Herniman said. "It’s almost impossible to save for buying a house."

Despite this, Ms Herniman says that she does enjoy living in Penarth.

"I love to be by the sea," she said. "To be able to walk along the seafront on summer evenings is something that I will never take for granted!".

As someone who enjoys reading, she has also found that there are plenty of places to sit and read, such as Alexandra Park. She has also found that there are lots of pubs and bars which are popular most nights of the week.

Since moving to the area, she has also enjoyed following the local ice hockey team, the Cardiff Devils - whose arena is a walkable distance from Penarth.