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Son's Mother Moving to Middle of Nowhere (in Northern Ireland)
Hi All,

Like most of you on here my story is very long and complicated. But I will try to keep this short and sweet!

Basically, I'm from Bristol, met a girl from Manchester in 2007, had a baby in 2008, moved up there. She ended the relationship when our son was 9 months old. I moved back to Bristol, had contact with my son for a year. She cut off contact for a year, I got access through the courts. I moved back to Manchester in 2012, we arranged contact between ourselves and I ended up seeing my son 3/4 days a week with at least 2 overnights. I was heavily involved in his life until August 2016 when she randomly decided to move to Belfast. She has no family or friends in Northern Ireland, she knew one person out there who she fell out with shortly after moving there. After she moved she did not give me her new address and I had to go through the courts to get to see my son. After 4 months of not seeing him, I now get to see him one weekend a month and also during school holidays.

Obviously I was not happy about her unnecessarily moving our son to a new location far away from any of his family (he has family in Bristol, Manchester and Grimsby but nowhere else). My son was happy to move though as he was not happy in Manchester and hated the school he was at (he has always had behaviour problems at school). His new school is much better than his old one in Manchester. The area that they moved to is not too far from Belfast city centre, so I consider it to be a fairly good location. My son is happy there and happy in his new school.

I did plan on moving there as soon as possible, but I was advised that I might have a chance of getting custody of him in Bristol. So I accepted a job in Bristol which I could not leave until 6 months later otherwise I would have to pay for training. Shortly after accepting the job I found out that my chances of getting custody of my son in Bristol were next to impossible. Anyway, I am intending to move to Belfast this summer (I'm applying to do a Masters). The problem I have now is that I have just found out that my son's mother is moving AGAIN to move in with her new boyfriend (who she can't have known for a very long time considering she didn't know this man before moving to Belfast in August 2016) in a fairly remote village in Northern Ireland. I suppose it's commuting distance from Belfast if you're a driver (Google maps say's it's about 40 minutes to Belfast via the motorway), but I don't drive and so it will be very difficult for me to pick up my son (Google maps says to get there by public transport from Belfast it will take up to 2 hours). Also, his mother refuses to give me her new address, which is very concerning.

Apparently she's going to keep him in his current school until she gets him "statemented" (she is trying to get him diagnosed as autistic, even though he has already been tested and scored well below the threshold for a diagnosis). I don't know how long this will take, but I suspect that she will at least keep him there until the end of the current school year (June I think). I'm wondering if it's possible for me to move there and then apply to the courts to stop her from moving him to another school? If I had a suitable place for my son to live, then perhaps the courts would place him in my custody in order to ensure he has some stability, stays in the same school and area etc. I don't think it's in his best interests to be moved around so often. I also don't think it's appropriate for his mother to move in with a man she has been dating for less than 6 months. Furthermore, moving to a remote village is going to isolate my son and make it very difficult for me to see him in the future. Perhaps the courts will take all of this into account? I don't know. Does anyone have any advice they can share?

Thanks for reading.

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