Travel-mad couple name children after fictional adventure characters: 'No regrets'

John and Tara Newby
A couple who decided to name children after fictional adventure characters have been called "dumb". (SWNS)

A couple insist they have "no regrets" after deciding to name children after fictional adventure characters.

John and Tara Newby, who are both passionate about travel, have been called "dumb" and told that their kids will be "bullied at school".

John, 45, and his wife, Tara, 35, have travelled 24 countries with their 20-month-old son Crusoe

He is named after the fictional castaway Robin Crusoe, the hero of the 18th-century novel by Daniel Defoe.

John and Tara Newby
Crusoe and Sawyer have already visited numerous countries, despite their tender age. (SWNS)

Meanwhile, their youngest son, Sawyer, is 12 weeks old and has been named after Mark Twain's famous adventurer Thomas Sawyer from his 1876 novel.

Their eldest has been travelling since he was just seven weeks old, visiting the likes of USA, Morocco, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Hungary, Slovakia, Monaco and Italy.

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Similarly, his brother has got off to a strong start – already taking in England, Spain, Portugal and Zimbabwe so far.

However, the family is currently living on and renovating a farm in northern Portugal.

John and Tara Newby
Their eldest son has already travelled to 24 countries. (SWNS)

John, a content creator originally from Chipping Norton in Oxfordshire, has revealed that they have already received criticism for the name choices.

"I loved the Robinson Crusoe books growing up and as soon as I knew we were pregnant I knew I wanted to call our baby Crusoe," he enthuses.

"From 12 weeks on I was just referring to him as Crusoe rather than 'the baby'. We had a big debate about it, but six months in Tara agreed and we knew it had to be Crusoe.

"Tara's parents were really confused at first – my parents just said it was me being a bit crazy again.

John and Tara Newby
The pair met in 2012 but didn't get together until several years later. (SWNS)

"Sawyer was a bit easier for people to understand after Crusoe, and it's less of a name that challenges people, whereas Crusoe really did.

"Thomas Sawyer is a loveable rogue boy, a friend of the Huckleberry twins, but Tara wouldn't let me call him Huckleberry."

He admits the name choices could be seen a controversial. "We have had some people confused or disagreeing with the names," he admits.

"We had one person comment on one of our YouTube videos saying: 'What a stupid name to name a boy, you've done that for your own benefit without any thought for the child and he's going to be bullied for having such a dumb name'.

Tara Newby holding her baby son Crusoe (SWNS)
Tara Newby found out she was pregnant with Crusoe shortly after the couple set off travelling in 2020. (SWNS)

"But I disagree. There's a story behind it, a lot of thought went into it. It wasn't a thoughtless decision and I think one day it will help him – his name makes him stand out."

John and Tara met in 2012 when they both worked for a holiday firm in Oxfordshire, but they didn't get together until seven years later.

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After being reunited by mutual friends in Spain in 2019, they quickly tied the knot in Antarctica in February 2020.

Due to the pandemic, the pair decided in July 2020 to quit their jobs, sell their home and take up life on the road in a converted Toyota van.

John and Tara Newby
People have been a little confused by their kids' names at first. (SWNS)
John and Tara Newby
Crusoe Newby meeting the Himba tribe in Namibia. (SWNS)

Soon afterwards, Tara discovered she was pregnant – but the couple were undeterred and have proceeded to take their firstborn on their adventures with them.

Tara, who is originally from Zimbabwe, explains: “Everything we’ve done is beyond my wildest dreams of what life was going to be like.

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“Robinson Crusoe is John’s favourite book of all time because it inspired him as a young boy to think of a life of adventure. Now we’re living that. To know these have been Crusoe’s first years of life means everything.”

John adds: "Crusoe has 100 per cent grown into his name. He's a very curious little boy, very determined, very independent.

“We’re living on a farm in Portugal right now, renovating it and sharing it on our YouTube channel, The Newbys, and he’s always involved in the projects."

Additional reporting: SWNS

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