Mothers 'lonely over university'
One in three mothers have said they will feel lonely when their child heads to university this September, a survey has revealed.
Half of those with teenagers flying the nest said they planned to keep the first few days after term starts free, just in case they are needed by their child.
Most of those questioned, 90%, said they wanted their son or daughter to feel comfortable in their new home, with towels and clean sheets coming top of the list of items they see as essential for their student digs.
Their children considered mobile phones and laptops as the most important items to take with them, however - although towels were their third choice.
One in four of those surveyed by homewares store Dunelm Mill also said they would feel depressed at the thought of the house being empty once their child goes to university.
Sue Atkins, a parenting coach, said: "It's only natural that parents can feel a great loss when their children leave home.
"From the poll, parents feel it important to make their children's new house more homely and spending a day out together to get the home essentials is a great way of preparing for their departure.
"Parents can take comfort in students rating their laptops and mobiles as essentials. It makes it easier for parents to communicate on their level via Facebook and Twitter, although you may find out too much information!"