Hello Ian and welcome to the forum from another Ian
I retired just before Christmas last year. Bought the static 3 and a half years ago with the intention of using it more during retirement.
It is certainly a great lifestyle especially when retired as you can come and go as you please. During what was left of this year i have spent 4 weeks at the van then a week at home each month.
I wish you luck in finding the right site and static. It is a big investment so as you say you need to do your homework.
There is a topic on here about buying your first static. But any questions just feel free to ask. I'm sure someone will have an answer.