Moving to Manchester - can you help me with advice on schools in Trafford?

(88 Posts)
Ohforfoxsake Sat 12-Dec-09 16:20:22

Following on from my original thread on where to live, we are on the market and relocating within the next 6 months. We've seen some great houses in Sale, Altrincham and Hale.

Education is really the key to moving to this area. The children are of Primary age, but we are thinking about secondary too.

There's so many schools, many of which look good on paper and OFSTED, but I'd really appreciate your honest opinions, good and bad.

We're relocating from London so its really hard to get up to do viewings, let alone school visits during the week, so your advice would really count.

Thank you, in advance.

Ohforfoxsake Sat 12-Dec-09 17:46:45

Shamelessly bumping grin

Ohforfoxsake Sat 12-Dec-09 19:51:27

and again smile

Ohforfoxsake Sun 13-Dec-09 13:02:45

Starting a thread during X-Factor final may not have been a good idea!!

Doodlez Sun 13-Dec-09 13:09:41

Trafford is rammed with good primary and good secondary/grammar schools. So long as you stay in the Trafford area, it doesn't really make much difference which schools you get them in to at primary, as they all (or most) seem to prep them for the entrance exams and 11+.

I went to Loreto in Altrincham but came from out of area. My step-sisters all went there and started in St Hughes primary, which is in Timperely.

My niece & nephew go to Altrincham Grammar for Girls and Altrincham grammar for Boys respectively. Both went to a primary in Timperley too (but can't remember the name of it!)

One of my brothers went to St Ambrose, he went to the prep. there too, as did one of my best friends. Excellent school.

My step-nephew goes to St. Ambrose and also went to St Hughes primary in Timperley.

Find the right house. Trafford is one of the few places in the country where school catchment is less important because as I said, it's rammed with excellent schools.

Doodlez Sun 13-Dec-09 13:15:09

Oh and just thought - another Mumsnetter called Cornsilk knows the Trafford schools quite well too - I think she might teach at primary level there but don't quote me on that coz not 100% sure of me facts but I'm sure she'll have some wise words.

Ohforfoxsake Sun 13-Dec-09 13:41:20

Oh Doodlez, thank you for answering.

I think you are right, I was starting to think along those lines as well. From what I can tell you can't go far wrong as far as Primary goes. There are some lovely houses around the area.

Ohforfoxsake Sun 13-Dec-09 14:58:47

Bumping.

Anyone selling a house in Trafford? wink

phoebeophelia Sun 13-Dec-09 17:57:00

Oldfield Brow Primary, Altrincham. Reputation variable but in fact it is great. My children all went there then passed to Manchester Grammar, and scholarships to independent schools.

Ohforfoxsake Sun 13-Dec-09 18:38:50

I hadn't come across that one and have looked at it, thank you. That really helps.

Ohforfoxsake Tue 15-Dec-09 11:33:43

Shamelessly bumping

ohh, festive smileys grin

selby Thu 17-Dec-09 00:33:13

Hello again! You need to make a decision on the area and then focus on school catchment. When we moved from the south, we focused on Hale/Bowden and then found a house within catchment of our top 2 choices - the primaries in Bowden which are both excellent(phoned the LEA for this info). Your issue which is out of your control remains whether the school that you decide upon will have the places available for all of your children. I only had the one child to consider who was entering reception at the time. Good Luck.

Ohforfoxsake Thu 17-Dec-09 20:30:03

Ahh, hello Selby grin thanks for that.

We're going for Sale/Altrincham/Hale because, as Doodlez said, you can't go far wrong (I hope! That's why I'm here grin). So, we will concentrate on looking for a house. Which is going to be impossible as we have about one day inbetween now and April to get up there.

There is the whole issue with places being available (which frankly, I'd rather not even think about!). We might rent for 6 months, but won't want to move the children from their school again, so we will be tied to an area in that respect.

I'm hoping if there are any to be avoided, someone on here might tell me!

myredcardigan Sat 19-Dec-09 00:12:15

<MRC waves>
I've posted on your original thread though not much help with Trafford schools, sorry.

Maybe call a few a find out how probable it would be that they could accomodate all your kids.

Hope the house sale goes well!

cornsilkcremeeggspotter Sun 03-Jan-10 11:23:45

Where are you buying? Do your children have any SEN?

cornsilkcremeeggspotter Sun 03-Jan-10 11:25:59

That sounds weird and nosy! I'm asking as I know of one or two school which have great results but are not really the best place for children with SEN (from my experience as a parent.)

gingee Mon 04-Jan-10 01:16:04

secondary school-wise, if you can get them in (it's TOUGH!) the Grammar Schools are excellent. Altrincham Boys and Girls grammars and Urmston Grammar are fantastic. Sale Grammar is good, but I wouldn't recommend Stretford Grammar.

St Ambrose (boys) and Loretto (girls) are brilliant Catholic grammars and again very hard to get into. They have fee-paying prep departments which are lovely schools.

The Grammar Schools mostly have their own Entrance Examinations now as opposed to the 11-Plus, so it is more like independent school entrance instead of a test taken in the Primary school, not everyone does the Entrance Exams and they are usually held at the Grammar schools themselves.

The high schools, which are the alternatives to the Grammar Schools, are also good. Ashton On Mersey School is very sporty and "outstanding" at ofsted. Also know kids who have gone to Blessed Thomas Holford and done brilliantly.

If you are looking privately, Bowdon Prep and Altrincham Prep (girls only and boys only respectively) and Hale Prep (co-ed) get most kids into the Grammars.

There is also St Bedes, an excellent independent catholic school, and Culcheth Hall which is all-girls, small and gets good results.

Further afield but very popular with kids all over the Trafford area are Withington Girls' School, Manchester High for Girls and Manchester Grammar (boys and one of the best schools in the country, highly recommended from personal experience!), Cheadle Hulme School and Hulme Hall.

Ohforfoxsake Mon 04-Jan-10 16:31:02

Thank you smile

We are looking in Trafford - infact we've found a couple of places we are interested in, but haven't sold ours so....

They don't have SENs. I spoke to the LEA today, and although they wouldn't make them all go to different schools, there are no places (using a snap-shot of today as an example). Infact, they don't know how they are going to deal with any more children coming into the area.

Still, I'm telling myself you can't go too far wrong in Trafford <crosses fingers and hopes>

Ohforfoxsake Mon 04-Jan-10 16:33:17

I will investigate the catchment for Manchester Grammar. I hadn't considered it as yet, so thank you for that. smile We're looking at Primary at the moment, but not wanting to move longterm, so considering all the secondaries too.

myredcardigan Mon 04-Jan-10 21:13:47

Happy New Year!

No catchment for Manchester Grammar as the boys come from all over the NW. However they are mega selective and their 'academic bar' is one of the highest in the country.

Hope it's all going smoothly. smile

ChloeHandbag Mon 04-Jan-10 21:22:40

OFFS

I posted recently on your moving thread as I'm about to do the same thing - am a bit worried that there are lots of us all doing the same thing.

I did a ring around of the primary schools and spoke to Trafford, there are non that have places for my three dc's. However if they have spaces for two dc's you can appeal for a place for the third although it can take 30 school days to decide!

I'm going to be renting in the short term, but want to buy eventually so feel that we need to find the right area for us. I'd like that to be Hale, but it is expensive and I wonder if Sale/Altrincham/Timperley might be better financially.

Ohforfoxsake Tue 05-Jan-10 14:33:24

Hi Chloehandbag, yes I agree, Hale is lovely, but not much housing stock there to meet our needs. I'm getting a bit more used to the bigger area now. Where are you now and when are you going?

Its impossible isn't it? Even the LEA have no solutions for their lack of places. The appeal process won't be any use if you need a reception place due to the government limitations on class sizes, but gives a bit of scope for older children.

I don't know what to do. Leaving it to luck seems the most reliable option.

ChloeHandbag Tue 05-Jan-10 17:22:31

Yep, I'm leaving it to luck too makes me feel so secure hmm. Only one of my dc's is in KS1, so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Interesting that your getting used to the bigger area, we're in home counties and so it's a bit of a journey to go and get a feel for the area. I'd like to be in the catchment for Altrincham Girls grammar (for the future), which is 8 miles from Bowdon. The problem is it's oversubscribed and I don't know how close to Bowdon we need to be.
it's hard trying to work out how much we compromise on size of house for 'nice' area when you don't really know the areas that well. That's why we're going to rent.

What kind of house are you looking for? We'd like four beds, which is more expensive in Hale than here everyone seems to think we'll be getting a Mansion because it's the north - not so.

myredcardigan Tue 05-Jan-10 22:55:16

Hi Chloe, We moved up from home counties too. We're in Wilmslow so a bit further round and we were lucky as none of my three were of school age when we moved. The schools up here (in general) are fantastic.

In Surrey there were good schools but there was also a lot of rest on laurels, mc, reasonable schools. Here, certainly in Trafford, Stockport and Cheshire, we were amazed by the OFSTED reports and the sheer quantity of outstanding graded primaries.

It grates DH regularly to hear his southern mates talk about how cheap it is up North. Chip? He has a whole sack of spuds on his shoulder. grin

gingee Tue 05-Jan-10 23:46:43

Didsbury is nice, as are certain parts of Chorlton. I would also recommend Flixton and Urmston for a definite look-around, some lovely houses and great value for money, catchment for Urmston, Sale, St Ambrose and Loretto Grammars and some excellent primary schools. There's a good Prep there too, Abbotsford, which gets kids into the Grammars and Manchester independents regularly.

If you need a list of schools in these areas feel free to PM me.

ChloeHandbag Wed 06-Jan-10 09:53:55

Gingee - do children from Didsbury get into Alty Girls? or is it too far.

Ohforfoxsake Wed 06-Jan-10 10:13:50

Didsbury is nice, but the local school is quite big I think. We can't afford to go private. We really liked it on our initial visit, but its all about the schools isn't it?

But I will look at Urmston, thanks for that Gingee. That had fallen off the radar. Thanks for your offer of help too, its very much appreciated, I've got the info already smile Infact, I have all the secondary prospectuses and am in regular contact with the LEA. Obsessive? Moi? wink

I'm also keeping my eye on Wilmslow. We started our search there, but swayed to Trafford. Wilmslow High, from what we saw, had really impressive sports facilities.

Chloe, can I ask what's prompted your move? Don't answer if you don't want to, but if you want to contact me let me know. We can bang our heads against brick walls together! wink

ChloeHandbag Wed 06-Jan-10 12:38:13

Offs - not sure how the CAT thing works, I'll look into it - but yes sounds like we could help each other out.

Ohforfoxsake Wed 06-Jan-10 13:29:17

laineyjbe at hotmail dot co dot uk if that helps [fsmile]

Ohforfoxsake Wed 06-Jan-10 14:46:38

Can anyone tell me more about Urmston?

Gingee is right, from what I can see (looking at Rightmove, Ofsted and DFES websites) it looks like there are some great houses, good value for money and good schools. Bit closer to the City than I wanted to be - but I am only making assumptions as I haven't actually been there.

Any opinions, views, experience of the place?

Thanks smile

selby Wed 06-Jan-10 22:30:33

Manchester Grammar & Withington Girls are both independent schools and are even harder to get in than the the Altrincham Grammar Schools which are free and incidentally in Bowden rather than Altrincham (I know since I live approximately bang in the middle between the two). I have no doubt that the fact that there is so much excellent schooling in such a relatively small area (both state and private) has greatly contributed to the house prices. I know people who haved to Hale/Bowden from Didsbury/Chorlton(i.e not very far) just for the choice of schools. As someone who relocated from the south, I can truly say that Urmston cannot compare! My priority was good schools when we moved - basically, the housing is cheaper the more north you go up the tram line in Trafford - for obvious reasons. I initially house hunted as far as Sale (never even considered Urmston) but quickly backtracked down to the Hale/Bowden area. Location definitely matters (no offence to anyone living in Urmston)

Ohforfoxsake Thu 07-Jan-10 08:06:31

Thanks Selby. I think you are right about the tram line thing.

Ohforfoxsake Thu 07-Jan-10 08:27:07

Selby - if you found the most fabulous house but it was in Sale, what would you do?

selby Thu 07-Jan-10 23:02:36

We did find a house that we liked in Sale on Avenue Rd but decided that we didn't want to compromise on location for the bigger house. We compromised on the house size and obviously got far less for our money in Hale/Bowden. Not regretted it yet and we've been here for nearly 2 yrs. It's nice to walk everywhere on wide tree lined roads - leafy but with plenty of restaurants & shops just down the road - Hale Village in one direction & Altrincham town centre in the other. However, it's horses for courses - this is a personal choice only you/your family can make. I'm fairly sure that if you ask the 'locals', the majority would plump for Hale over Sale.

Ohforfoxsake Fri 08-Jan-10 14:43:25

Thanks for that Selby.

We would have to majorily compromise on size to live in Hale. There just aren't any 5/6 beds in our price range. You do get more for your money further up the tram line, and I'm a bit of a stickler for value for money. I will keep looking in Hale though. If I had more money it would be my first choice.

Am off to buy my Euromillions ticket.

myredcardigan Sat 09-Jan-10 14:03:35

I wouldn't live in Urmston. It just doesn't compare. There is always a reason you get more for your money.

In Trafford I would go for Hale/Bowden or certain parts of Altrincham.

For us, location really mattered. Not just schools (though these were very important) but local feel. I wanted to be able to walk to nice cafe bars and Waitrose etc. So when we factored in schools and local area it really came down to either Hale, Bramhall or Wilmslow.

As you know we opted for Wilmslow but I'd say between those three it really is personal preference and the right feel for your family. One of the reasons we chose Wilmslow was because personally we prefer the 1930s white rendered detached with half acre to the smaller plots in Hale with their beautiful Victorian stock.

If Trafford fits best for commute and you like the housing stock I'd say buy the smaller house in Hale over the bigger one in Sale and most certainly the one in Urmston. smile

selby Sat 09-Jan-10 15:06:34

Totally agree with you, myredcardigan. Wilmslow was a close 2nd choice for us because there is more housing stock to choose from plus it's also better value for money but the added commute was the deal breaker. Definitely prefer Wilmslow over Sale though. We house hunted aroud the Pownall Park area which I particularly liked.

myredcardigan Sat 09-Jan-10 18:36:54

Hi Selby, that's where we are. We back onto the Carrs so as well as having the town centre within 10min walk, we also have beautiful open countryside at the back of the house and styal country park up the road.

But...it was a close run thing with Hale and I do sometimes crave the beauty of the Victorian architecture. Our last house was Edwardian and I miss the homely feel you get from Vic/Edw houses.

It's not cheap here either but you do get more square footage for your money. The A34 into Manchester can be a horrific some days and a deal breaker though.

OFFS, Wilmslow High is an excellent school. Some 'sporting academies' are naff but it's not the case here.
My kids are at independent primaries at the moment but we have looked around it and I will seriously consider it when the time comes as it had such a good vibe.

Ohforfoxsake Sat 09-Jan-10 18:43:54

Thanks for your honest opinions everyone. We started our search in Wilmslow, and Hale would be my top choice if we could afford it. We're a large family, and that has its own restrictions.

There's a couple of houses in Hale I've been desperately trying to see, but it seems the agents are no longer trading and haven't taken them off any websites. Grrrr.

I'm feeling a bit despondent about my own house sale today. I just want to get on with it!!!

myredcardigan Sat 09-Jan-10 19:16:03

OFFS, can I just say that Sale is not a bad area by any means. In fact it's a perfectly respectable middle class family area. It has good schools and is close to good amenities.

Ok, it doesn't have the swanky cafe bar culture and trendy boutiques that Hale offers but please don't feel like if you buy in Sale you're buying in a grotty area because you wouldn't be.

So please don't be dispondent if Sale's the right choice for your family. It's still an area nicer than about three quarters of Greater Manchester. smile smile

thesecondcoming Sat 09-Jan-10 20:10:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

myredcardigan Sat 09-Jan-10 20:23:13

hmm
Happily married, teeth and tits all my own but still keen on Hale.

thesecondcoming Sat 09-Jan-10 21:21:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

selby Sat 09-Jan-10 21:29:36

The demographic of mums at my child's school is definitely my age (late thirties with Y1 child - pretty sure that I'm the average age mum on the school run round here). More of the naff Boden/North Face anoraks type rather than the Fake Orange variety though. grin. BTW, am within walking distance to Loreto Grammar too!

thesecondcoming Sat 09-Jan-10 21:37:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

selby Sat 09-Jan-10 22:15:56

As someone who actually relocated from the south and had much the same criteria as OFFS when considering where to move to in south Manchester, I'm merely stating my preference and I had no preconceptions before we moved. Having lived in the area for nearly 2 yrs, I still like it. It's an affluent area so yes, there are footballers/soap actors who live in the area but it's not like Alderley Edge is it? Now, if I had serious dosh, I wouldn't mind living there! Let's be honest, Hale/Bowden is surburban - just expensive surbuban - like many other areas of the country. As I said before, I moved here for the number of good schools within walking distance from my house. The restaurants are a plus - I don't care whether I spot the odd Orangey bimbo climbing out of a 4x4!

myredcardigan Sun 10-Jan-10 09:00:08

To be honest, we have more of that in Wilmslow than Ive ever seen in Hale. grin

carocaro Sun 10-Jan-10 09:06:19

Knutsford is fab, all school great Bexton is the best am biased as DS's go there, very happy indeed.

carocaro Sun 10-Jan-10 09:10:12

Sorry meant to add we moved from London 4 years ago to Knutsford in Cheshire, 20 mins from Hale, Sale etc.

Think Wimbledon/Barnes village, but bigger.

Really love it here, life is good.

Please do contact me for a chat anytime.

thesecondcoming Sun 10-Jan-10 09:18:36

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

carocaro Sun 10-Jan-10 09:22:51

And 5 mins to M6 and M56 into Manchester, 20 mns to Crewe 1.5 hrs train to London (DH goes at least once a wee).

Tatton Park on your doorstep.

Kings in Macclesfield good mixed private secondary, as is North Cestrian in Altrincham.

Intake areas for private secondaries are fairly far and wide. Kuntsford does have a state secondary which is pretty good, new head just about to take over.

thesecondcoming Sun 10-Jan-10 09:38:01

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Ohforfoxsake Sun 10-Jan-10 09:54:58

thesecondcoming actually, that is really helpful, thank you. Both DP and I really liked Chorlton and Didsbury, but like you, we don't think the schools reflect our needs. I will look up the areas you have suggested.

Hale appeals because it has a definate centre, and a village. I can get my head around that. I can see me pootling around. I don't want to get in my car everyday to go somewhere nice.

Myredcardigan, you're post exactly reflects the conversation DP and have just had, so thank you because I feel very reassured now.

Unfortunately Knutsford is a bit far out for us, but I'm still looking at Lymm.

I really appreciate all your posts, but I'm getting a bit teary about it all today. Especially as our second viewing didn't bother turning up yesterday, and I'm finding the selling side more stressful than I imagined it would be.

Last year I was all "oh I can arrange a wedding, get married, move house, get my kids into the school I want - Oh I can do it all, me".

Fastforward to 1st Jan 2010 12.01am and I'm not so sure....

I just don't know how you are meant to get a handle on areas you don't know and can't spend any time in sad

thesecondcoming Sun 10-Jan-10 10:18:16

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

carocaro Sun 10-Jan-10 17:48:37

It's not too far out honest, 30 mins into manchester in the car, 35 mns by train.

Remember in London it takes an hour to travel 5 miles sometimes, here it takes about 10-15 mins, so although everything seems further apart in reality it's not.

Lymm is very quiet and isolated, not much goes on there, we looked at it at first but were put off by the location, very small village centre.

Whereas Knutsford 10mns away, has a cinema, loads of restaruants, bars, Starbucks, Costa, big library, Booths supermarket (think Waitrose and Sainsbury's combined) lots of clubs and activities.

Can't you tell I just love it!

kritur Sun 10-Jan-10 18:23:31

I live in Trafford at the moment although I'm moving away in a few weeks. To be honest you can get a feel for an area just from a drive through. You need to know what your wish list is. What is essential for where you want to live and then go from there. I currently live in Flixton, it's a nice village, church, co-op, Drs, dentists etc. Near enough to Trafford Centre for everything you might ever need and also Urmston centre is nearby which has just been redeveloped with a new sainsburys etc. I have really enjoyed living here, and have had a good lifestyle, allotment etc. I work in Bolton and have easy access to M60 for my commute which takes about 20 mins. I'm now moving to Bolton because of my separation and my support network is up there but if work was nearer here I would stay, it has everything I need.

myredcardigan Sun 10-Jan-10 21:21:38

carocaro, I like knutsford too but can't agree it's only half hour drive into town in rush hour traffic.
We're in Wilmslow and it often takes DH an hour.

carocaro Tue 12-Jan-10 09:56:46

DH leaves at 7.30 and it takes about 30-40 mins, he does not go into Manchester everyday, I promise.

I went to school in Wilmslow, Ashdene and Wilmslow County High, which is a fab high school now I think, some sort of sports academy? Is that right?

We should go for a coffee at John Lewis one day, never met a MN before!

Have 2 DS's, 2 and 7.

MerlinsBeard Tue 12-Jan-10 10:05:11

What else do you need other than good schools? That may have a bearing on places to look at.

Ohforfoxsake Tue 12-Jan-10 11:35:04

Good schools, transport and a community spirited neighbourhood pretty much meet all our needs.

A local under 10s footy team is an essential too.

And I'd quite like some friends.

Please.

myredcardigan Tue 12-Jan-10 13:35:08

I'm never out of John Lewis! blush

OFFS, I feel like we're friends already! wink
Oh and you'll find all those things in any of the places you're looking.

Carocaro, I have DS(6) DD1(3) and DD2(1)
I'm always up for a coffe, especially in my spiritual home! grin

MerlinsBeard Tue 12-Jan-10 16:09:49

Well, i am sure there will be a few MNetters close by for starters

Where i live is like that - not all areas mind you! My road certainly is though. And there are some lovely MNetters too! (Hazel Grove)

MerlinsBeard Tue 12-Jan-10 16:10:58

And there is a John Lewis and not one but 2 Waitroses close by ! but i don't know where abouts the Wilmslow one is - i don't venture further than Town centre of Wilmslow!

myredcardigan Tue 12-Jan-10 21:59:32

MOM, the Wilmslow Waitrose is in the town centre. Just down the hill behind Starbucks. Just up from the church.

MerlinsBeard Tue 12-Jan-10 22:10:57

Ooh maybe i could nip in before dancing tomorrow wink

I dance at the recreation centre on a Wed night

MerlinsBeard Tue 12-Jan-10 22:17:23

TBH i am a bit vague on Wilmslow TC too blush

paddingtonbear1 Thu 14-Jan-10 21:30:18

My office is round the corner from the Wilmslow Waitrose, I sometimes pop in there for a sarnie
I like John Lewis too, dd (6) likes their cafe!

Ohforfoxsake Fri 15-Jan-10 11:26:18

ooh, are you all going to have a meet-up? smile

pranma Sat 16-Jan-10 22:17:33

Urmston Grammar is a super school not only academically but also on the pastoral side.The best comp is Bramhall High imho.

jeaniego Thu 11-Mar-10 22:34:32

Hi we are thinking of moving to urmston/flixton but have heard rumours about smells of sewage which has put us off a bit. Can anyone comment? Also looking for advice on where to avoid or hotspots in this area. Many thanks

GG

SophieJo Sat 31-Jul-10 17:54:58

I was worried about moving North from London especially as the children were so settled in their schools.We were looking to continue their education in private schools and fortunately found a lovely small school which suited them perfectly.Forest School Timperley is a small prep school which we were told, caters for the grammar schools in Altrincham as well as the other Independant schools like Manchester Grammar and is so welcoming.

Littlemissneurotic Tue 21-Sep-10 10:57:06

If you look on 'radius around a point' maps, can help you draw up catchment area maps if you are aiming for comps too. Didn't catch the age of your DC's but will watch this chat with interest as am very interested in moving to Timperley from East manchester. PS lived v near Manchester boys and Girls for many years and would avoid the area.

rosiedosie Tue 21-Sep-10 23:29:17

Where did you finally decide on???!!!

bigfootbeliever Wed 22-Sep-10 06:06:00

I used to live in Hale (gorgeous), shopped in Altrincham and worked in Manchester (used the Metro).

This was before DS came along but it's a lovely place to live. I still miss it.

Sezaroo Thu 13-Sep-12 17:27:22

I know that I'm a little late for this thread, but having recently gone through exactly the same process myself I can hopefully help out anybody else who is thinking of moving to the Manchester area.

My partner and I did research until Ofsted reports and Key Stage results were coming out of our ears! In the end we opted for Altrincham as it really was by far the best area of Manchester we found. Not only are the schools great, but it is a really nice place to live too.

The best primary school in Altrincham that we found is Oldfield Brow Primary School - rated excellent by Ofsted and with the best results in recent years of all the primary schools in the area - see the 'Find my school' website.

The area surrounding the school is also a great place to live as the prices aren't as high as some other parts of Altrincham, but with the school recently shooting up the table I'm sure that prices are rising. The school is now very difficult to get in to if you live outside the catchment, so my advice is that the nicer houses are to be found towards the top of the 'brow'. Roads such as Oldfield Road, St Marks Avenue etc are really nice, tree lined roads and you can find houses around the £200-300k mark for a 3 bed. Further down the hill on the estate you can get similar places for around £160-180k. If you've got more to spend then there are loads of million £+ houses too. Try going on Rightmove and doing a 1/4 mile radius search for WA14 4JB and all of those places will be within the catchment for Oldfield Brow.

As I say, I did all the research humanly possible and I pinpointed that area after compiling my findings. Since moving over here it really would taker a bulldozer to move me elswhere!

Sezaroo Thu 13-Sep-12 17:32:21

PS, I forgot to mention that Oldfield Brow is next to two gorgeous parks - John Leigh Park, a lovely park with open spaces and fantastic play areas, and also next to Dunham Massey - a national trust park where you can walk through fantastic gardens with wild deer, rabbits and bird life. You are 5 minutes from the motorway network and also have the transport depo in Altrincham centre within a short walk from where you can get a tram, train or bus. Driving to Manchester is also easy as it is one straight road in from Altrincham.

It really is a wonderful place.

theweekendisnear Thu 13-Sep-12 21:45:59

I name changed because I don't want to be recognised, but the following is all true!

About Oldfield Brow - yes, it is a friendly place.

Oldfield Brow Primary School - the headteacher (if it's still the one that was there 3 years ago) is FANTASTIC. He is the reason why this school is a good place for the kids. We had to move from Oldfield Brow, and the kids are now happy in their new school. But they still say that they miss the old headteacher, and they still sing the songs that he taught them.

He knew every child, and could tell you the personality of each kid. He also helped parents with their CVs etc. Great person.

I feel that my kids' current school is better suited to them, but we do miss the old HT so much. (BTW we didn't move because of the school, we moved country because of work.)

Oh, another great point was the nursery at Oldfield Brow. Again: great nursery teacher who cared a lot about the kids, and a very nice little outside area for the kids to play in.

And the Toddler group on Taylor Road kept me sane when the kids were little. I don't know if it's still there though.

PropositionJoe Thu 13-Sep-12 21:56:41

Hmm. Oldfield Brow is "the wrong side of town" though. What about Stamford Park or the Bollin?

jenbobs2 Wed 26-Sep-12 09:57:51

sezaroo - would be interested in your opinion as just starting all my research now!
I want to move into the catchment area of good primary/ secondary. I'm in Didsbury now and looking at Trafford as excellent secondary education (with VIth form) comes free! My boys are 1 & 2 smile
My question is will your house also come under catchment for one of the good grammars? (Alty/ Sale/ Ambrose/ Stretford). But also ... what are the other schools like if the boys dont pass their entrance exams (eek!).
I am having trouble finding catchment maps for the grammars as they seem to be postcode/ street based, and maps arent provided on the LEA website.
We'll be looking about the £250-300k mark.
Many thanks!

Sezaroo Wed 10-Oct-12 02:55:32

Hi Jenbobs2

Yes I'm pretty sure that Oldfield Brown comes under the Alty Grammar catchment as from memory that is all WA14 and WA15 postcodes - and the area all comes under WA14.

As 'theweekendisnear' pointed out, the head teacher at Oldfield Brow is very very good. This clearly filters through to the teachers and to the students. I went to look at a few of the schools including The Bollin and Stamford Park, and although they were really nice I just felt that Oldfield Brow had the edge. If they can get those results with kids from a mix of economic backgrounds compared to others where the majority are from privileged backgrounds (more likely to have private tutors etc) then they must be doing something right.

I've just had a quick look on rightmove, and a search for 'houses' in 'Oldfield Brow' brought up 61 results, 16 of which are £300k or under. Most in the £200-£300k category tend to go really quickly, as we wanted to move on to St Marks Avenue but the two on there at £219 and £239k already have sales agreed. I have been told that there is a nice 4 bed semi on St Marks due to come on the market in the coming weeks priced at £320k from a 'motivated seller', so you could possibly get that for £300k. Unfortunately our budget wont stretch that far so I'll let you have it! hehe. Good luck with your search and hope that this helps! ;-)

ohforfoxsake Sun 21-Oct-12 20:04:11

I'm revisiting this thread as since originally starting it we've moved, are in schools and have just had Ds's grammar results.

Having done all the open days we are spoilt for choice with grammar and high schools, all of which have so much to offer.

DIddled Mon 22-Oct-12 21:28:10

Hi got a son Y9 AGSB let me know if any q's ? I know a lot of peeps at other schools too- we are out of area.

notangelinajolie Wed 24-Oct-12 00:10:14

Hi I am a 40 something mum of three whose children attended local primary and secondary schools in the Altrincham area. I have lived in Timperley all my life so i know the Sale/Altrincham/Timperley/Hale/Bowdon area like the back of my hand! I went to Altrincham Grammar and so did one of my children, one went to Wellington and the other is at a local independant. If anyone needs any advice about moving into the area - whether it's advice on 'parts of town best avoided', catchment areas or '11 plus exams', I'll do my best to help!

Re Oldfield Brow - it's lovely I agree, but if your children don't pass the entrance exams for the Grammar Schools the Secondary School they would be in catchment for is Altrincham College of Arts which is quite a distance and doesn't have as good a reputation locally as Wellington.

Mumof2G Sat 18-May-13 12:04:02

Hi notangelinajolie,

I am really in need of advise as I am thinking of moving to Altrincham girls catchment. would you be able to advise me or let me know your contact details so that I can reach out to you.

NappyHappy Sat 18-May-13 12:12:18

Jeanie, I'm from Urmston and it whiffs more in Davyhulme in the Summer, Flixton/Urmston are lovely and we live a few miles away from there in Partington. Did you move there in the end?

NappyHappy Sat 18-May-13 12:13:23

I've just noticed it was 3 yes ago you posted blush

mumsupa Thu 13-Jun-13 10:07:12

to cornsilkcremeeggspotter
My ds has SEN. We are movng to timperley are. Do you suggest any school where we shouldn't go? Any suggestion ?

mumsy13 Mon 08-Jul-13 22:15:49

can anyone help? 11 yr old to travel from altrincham to urmston grammar. No school buses that I can see.Please mums, does anybody has any suggestions?

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