(188 Posts)

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Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 10:34:52

A few months ago I started a thread about living near Edinburgh - specifically within 30 mins of the airport. Moving to that area was on the cards and it is again - but the thread, of course, has disappeared as it was in Chat!! It was over 100 posts of great, friendly advice and I NEED IT AGAIN!! You lot were soooo lovely and I hope you will perhaps take a minute or two to post your advice again as a move is even more imminent now. THANK YOU thanks thanks in advance.

So - we would like to be semi-rural, preferably in a village, but must be 30-40 mins from Edinburgh Airport. Schools are a crucial factor - we have DD8 and DS6. We want, as does everyone, a lovely and successful primary school and then caring and thriving secondary - good state or private. DD very academic, DS more into being as noisy as possible as befits a 6yo boy grin. I am a teacher so would be looking for a job, too, but not crucial straight away. I'm also interested in the weather and midges - are they a nightmare?!

Let's go - can we make over 100 posts from unbelievably brilliant Scottish people again???

thanks and here's a brew for good measure.

JennyPiccolo Sun 03-Nov-13 10:45:40

What was your budget? Also, midges are only really an issue next to water. Non moving water is the worst.

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 10:47:23

Budget not really set yet but about 400K I think. It's the area/s I really want to establish first. Good to know re midges - no lake in the back garden then grin

Off to walk DCs + dog now but will check back later.

DorisShutt Sun 03-Nov-13 10:47:58

Linlithgow. Every time.

TigerTrumpet Sun 03-Nov-13 11:04:00

We live in a semi rural area just outside Stirling. EDI is just about doable in 35 mins, even in rush hour (I commute by car to the West End of Edinburgh, but we have rail, too). It's lovely and £400k will get you quite a bit. You could have a house each if you fancied it.

Salmotrutta Sun 03-Nov-13 11:14:26

Is your teaching qualification Scottish?

If it isn't you will have to contacts GTCS to find out if you can register with them for your sector.
You cannot teach in Scottish state school without being GTCS registered and not all non-Scottish teaching qualifications are accepted. So they would advise you.

I think PGCE is?

Sorry- I know that's not about houses but you did say you would be looking to work! grin

Salmotrutta Sun 03-Nov-13 11:16:25

But private schools in Scotland will take people with non-Scottish teaching qualifications by the way.

UnicornsNotRiddenByGrownUps Sun 03-Nov-13 11:20:00

Limekilns? Linlithgow? Aberdour?

BeaWheesht Sun 03-Nov-13 11:27:59

Charlestown, limekilns, aberdour, Kinross would be my first thoughts.

cazzyg Sun 03-Nov-13 11:29:45

Linlithgow would be my first choice. Fifteen minutes from the airport, direct trains to Edinburgh and Glasgow, good schools and lots going on for families. It is reflected in the house prices though compared to other towns nearby.

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 11:48:14

Thank you - will check out Linlithgow. Is it a town or a village? I know nothing...

I am qualified in England and have taught abroad but in a private school. I would be happy to teach in a private school again...I also have a hankering to work with books, such as a really good book shop with a huge literature section or in the children's literature section but who knows what the future may hold!

Good to know we could get something naice to live in for the money. A house each? Tempting as DH is very messy grin

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 11:52:59

How about schools? Any specific ones I can check out? Especially secondary as I'm more nervous about those! I know there are no grammars in Scotland but would love to send DD to a quite academic school...would there be a bus from Linlithgow-area to a school actually in Edinburgh (if that's where the best school would be)?

Salmotrutta Sun 03-Nov-13 11:58:56

I found a Scotsman league table link for Secondary results last year - we don't publish league tables in the same way - so maybe that will be helpful?


Also good to check out HMIE (our equivalent of OFSTED) reports on schools - go to Education Scotland website and they should have links.

Salmotrutta Sun 03-Nov-13 12:00:38

Oh and schools are allocated on catchment area of pupils so that's a consideration when looking for houses.

They don't choose by SATs or suchlike - thank goodness.

Pegfreak Sun 03-Nov-13 12:03:17

Penicuik was mentioned on the previous thread. There's also Balerno.

indyandlara Sun 03-Nov-13 12:05:08

What about East Lothian? Places such as North Berwicj, Gullane, Aberlady. Train service to Edinburgh. A1 then City Bypass to airport. Good schools both primary then secondary. I'm a teacher too and jobs are pretty thin in ground depending on what you teach? Lots of supply but poor pay now.

indyandlara Sun 03-Nov-13 12:05:44

On the ground even

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 12:07:58

Great please keep them coming! I remember Penicuik was mentioned a lot...and some sort of light-hearted banter about whether it could be considered Edinburgh or not smile

Salmotrutta thank you for link.

Indy I teach English...I have been keeping an eye on the TES and there certainly are not many jobs in Scotland! Everyone must be very happy in their schools envy]

Salmotrutta Sun 03-Nov-13 12:20:25

I should say that link is for state schools.

The Education Scotland website probably gives reports for independents too?

cazzyg Sun 03-Nov-13 12:33:47

For secondary schools, linlithgow academy is pretty academic. I went there a long time ago but most of my year went to university. There are a number of doctors, dentists, lawyers, accountants etc amongst my year. The catchment is pretty affluent with a high percentage of professional parents and it was the expectation that you would go to Uni.

Private schools are in edinburgh but lots of parents choose to live in linlithgow because of the school. There are some who travel in, usually by train which is a 20 minute journey plus onward travel. There are some very highly rated private schools in Edinburgh such as Fettes. But to give an example, we are weighing up the cost of private schooling versus the cost of moving back to Linlithgow.

heidihole Sun 03-Nov-13 12:40:48

so you started the thread in chat again?

indyandlara Sun 03-Nov-13 12:42:58

Look at My Job Scotland rather than TES. That's where LA advertise now.

PoppyAmex Sun 03-Nov-13 12:46:17

I agree with Linlithgow - moved to the area from Australia a couple of years ago and really love it.

You can commute to Edinburgh and/or Glasgow - there's loads of infrastructures and yet a semi-rural feel to it.

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 12:48:16

heidi yes, deliberately, for traffic. This time I will print the thread off when it's finished.

Poppy how interesting! Do you miss the Aussie weather?!

dementedma Sun 03-Nov-13 13:51:26

South Queensferry is nice.
Might be pushing it to get to the airport in 30 mins from Kinross,depending on the traffics but the high school there is excellent.

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 14:23:33

South Queensferry was deffo mentioned on the other thread, I remember now!

BeaWheesht Sun 03-Nov-13 14:25:27

South queens ferry is nice but not what I'd describe as rural really. Also is right under the bridges which can be a plus or minus depending on how you view these things...

Broxburn,Uphall,Winchburgh ,kirkliston,ecclesmachan,Newbridge,Ratho station. All west Lothian. They all used to be nice but Ive been gone a long time so not sure how they are now BUT all are close to the airport

We're hoping to move home soon, which is right where you're looking to move to. Our home towns are Bathgate and Armadale, both of which are being extensively re-developed at the moment. 30 mins to Glasgow or Edinburgh - both towns are smack in the middle of the two cities.

I'm very biased, but I love where I grew up, it has a nice, villagey feel, the primary and secondary schools are good, as far as I'm concerned, no idea on their league table position. However, given that between dh and I both have 2:1 honours degrees in competitive fields, and I have two merit postgraduate qualifications in my field, they can't be particularly shit.

TeacakeEater Sun 03-Nov-13 14:56:28

It does depend on OP's previous experience of villages though. (I once visited the South Downs and went to a pub in what felt to me like the village of Dibley! It was a world away from the industrial villages and small towns of Central Scotland.) Perhaps East Lothian has the more rural feel OP is after.

OP needs to get up and visit and visit schools so she can see what suits her and the family.

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 16:33:39

Teacake, we lived for seven years in a semi-rural village in North Oxfordshire...two pubs, village shop, small primary school and that was about it. We loved it.

I agree we need to scope the area first but we live abroad currently and it's not so easy to get up to Scotland...hence wanting as many tips from locals as possible.

kaumana Sun 03-Nov-13 17:59:05

I would suggest renting first in Edinburgh and then spend some time getting a feel for the areas mentioned above.

You can't register for a school until you have an address in the catchment area. A lot of "popular" schools may not have places in your childrens' years. So, I would be contacting the schools to see what places are available.

If you go down the independent route your address does not come into it. Many runs buses from outwith Edinburgh but you would still have to contact them replaces.

I have a friend who is moving to Edinburgh grom London with children the same ages as yours and it has been a huge headache

Raptorrethy Sun 03-Nov-13 18:35:50

Why has it been a headache, kaumana? Because of schools/catchment?

cloutiedumpling Sun 03-Nov-13 18:50:45

North Berwick is lovely but more than 30 mins from airport, particularly at the wrong time of day.

I wouldn't live in West Lothian or Penicuik. I go to Penicuik to use the library or get stuff fom Tesco if I can't be bothered to go to sainsburys but the town centre is mainly charity shops, Greggs, Farmfoods and Lidl. Edinburgh is lovely but expensive and not rural.

Wouldn't go for South Queensferry or over the bridge because commuter traffic is shocking.

This is 15 minutes from the Edinburgh bypass in a village with a great primary school that has just (2 weeks ago) moved into a brand new building. Local secondary is in Peebles, but close to private schools in Morningside if you want to go that route.

barmybunting Sun 03-Nov-13 18:57:29

Linlithgow would be my choice in your situation. It's a lovely small town, but enough going on and close to Edin. I lived there for a while. I'm a teacher (primary though) and would love to go and teach in some of the schools in Linlithgow - you hear good things! A friend teaches at Linlithgow Academy and from that, it sounds like a good school to me. A focus on achievement, positive behaviours and supporting the children to strive for their best.

ScoutJemAndBoo Sun 03-Nov-13 18:58:38

Linlithgow and surrounding areas, definitely - and my DD is old enough to be your babysitter too! grin

ScoutJemAndBoo Sun 03-Nov-13 19:01:57
kaumana Sun 03-Nov-13 19:10:26

Trying to match properties to schools with places in the year groups primarily. Friend hasnow gone down the independent route but only one school had places and it is some distance away from the area she has bought in. However there is a school bus which does a pick up nearby BUT not a drop off.

Raptorrethy Mon 04-Nov-13 09:33:24

Bumping just in case...

Does anyone have experience of (good or bad!) or can recommend specific secondary schools? Private or state? Apart from Linlithgow Academy which has been mentioned already.

thanks to everyone for their posts!

awakemysoull Mon 04-Nov-13 09:57:13

Peebles is a lovely town. It's 30 mins from Edinburgh in the Scottish Borders. I grew up there and the memories I have are positive. The primary schools are fantastic (especially priorsford) but the secondary school is awful. I had to leave in 3rd year because the bullying was so bad I couldn't even go to my classes without being hit or called on. The teachers turned a blind eye and the management refused to acknowledge the problem. I wasn't the only one with this issue. This was 10 years ago so I'm not sure how much it's changed now.

Penicuik (where I live now) is alright but some areas are really rough. The main street is charity shops and farm foods and just awful some days.

They have started to build new houses just outside Penicuik on the way to edinburgh. Cameron gardens next to pentland plants. If you Google that it will show you what it's about. Really nice area, 5 mins from the city bypass and 20 mins from city centre.

West Linton is stunning but very rural. The primary school is fantastic but peebles high would be the high school unless you chose private. It's not too far from Edinburgh, about a 25 min journey

Eddleston is another place with a great primary school

Hth feel free to pm me if you want any more information

Raptorrethy Mon 04-Nov-13 10:08:29

Thank you awakemysoull for such detailed info! Brilliant.

LELoupee Mon 04-Nov-13 10:34:52

Hello awake I'm in Penicuik too. Only living here sure to DH job, and don't think I would choose it as a place to live. The high street is dire, but think that's becoming fairly standard of towns this size.
Some of the surrounding villages are really nice tho, and your not far from an ok retail park, and can do the airport in around 30 minutes.
Not much use regarding schools, DS is only 15 months.

awakemysoull Mon 04-Nov-13 11:16:38

LELoupee I agree, there are some nice parts (Maurice wood, cornbank) but the high street is awful and the area I'm in is like the gaza strip some nights.

kaumana Mon 04-Nov-13 12:22:56

Edinburgh Evening News article

The above is in todays paper thought it might of be some interest to you.

Raptorrethy Mon 04-Nov-13 14:50:36

Interesting, thank you!

Weegiemum Mon 04-Nov-13 14:58:55

I lived in Edinburgh years ago (uni) so little advice there and in Glasgow now so too far away.

I have a good friend who lives in Bo'ness - very happy with both primary and secondary schools for her boys (Bo'ness Academy) and property is affordable, easy-as-it-comes commute to Edinburgh.

ScoutJemAndBoo Mon 04-Nov-13 19:03:36

I's happily have this one in Bo'ness

Catchment area for Deanburn, which is a good primary, and right opposite a lovely country estate.

ScoutJemAndBoo Mon 04-Nov-13 19:05:03
IrnBruTheNoo Mon 04-Nov-13 19:05:50

Balerno. Or Currie. Balerno High has a fantastic rep.

chateauferret Mon 04-Nov-13 19:37:45

Be warned that the roads for about ten miles in every direction from the airport are totally bonkers in the rush hour. Based on the last couple of weeks half an hour's drive might cover everything between Costorphine and Newbridge.

When the trams start you could more easily get a train from some quarters to Edinburgh Park and then a tram back the way.

I stay in Airdrie and work just past Hermison Gait. 32 miles M8 virtually all the way. At least an hour, more often 90 minutes confused oh and it's a cowp.

Raptorrethy Mon 04-Nov-13 19:57:02

What's a cowp chateau?? I'm guessing it's some Scottish word with something to do with traffic?? grin

Scout I cannot believe the price of that second house...shame we are not in a position to do anything right this moment! (Plus the small matter of actually going and looking at all these different areas of course.)

Thank you again to all - so much good info.

A cowp is a mess. Ie - my house is a cowp.

ScoutJemAndBoo Mon 04-Nov-13 20:23:36

I know. pparently the second house was the old school house. It was done up by a developer last year, but hasn't sold yet.

If you come this way for a visit, and fancy a tour guise, give me a shout!

Raptorrethy Mon 04-Nov-13 20:32:51

Thank you Scout I may well do that one day - this thread is being printed and kept this time! Plus I have a potential babysitter in your DD too grin

A cowp - love it. My DD's room is always a cowp. I keep wanting to write 'cowpat' instead.

dementedma Mon 04-Nov-13 20:33:34

Kinross High School is excellent.'perhaps a bit further north than you want bit great motorway links, lots of outdoorsy rural stuff.
30 minutes to airport on a clear run but longer in the rush hour.

Whybeige Mon 04-Nov-13 20:35:01

Bigger is lovely and very central! Lovely community. Wish I lived there envy

cazzyg Mon 04-Nov-13 20:43:09

I work near Hermiston Gait too. My journey is along the M9 and it's not too bad 40 mins door to door from Falkirk.

Raptorrethy Mon 04-Nov-13 20:43:50

Oooh some late contributions - fabulous! I will have a whole database in the end. Thank you and keep them coming, especially naming particular schools!

I can see I will have to use HIGHLIGHTERS and colour-coding when I print this thread out. Or maybe a corkboard, Carrie from Homeland-esque grin

Whybeige Mon 04-Nov-13 20:55:15

BiggAR - bloody IPAD

starving Mon 04-Nov-13 22:30:07

I think one or two suggestions are considerably more than 30 minutes from the airport. During rush hour you will be amazed at how far you don't travel in the west of Edinburgh!

lurkingfromhome Mon 04-Nov-13 22:48:51

Cramond? Very close to airport but manages to be a semi-rural idyll and still part of Edinburgh. Good schools close by at Barnton.

Raptorrethy Thu 07-Nov-13 19:28:37

One last question (honest grin). I'm a little confused at to which year groups my DCs would be going into as I know the Scottish system does not use Sept-Sept birthdays.
DD born February 2005, DS march 2007...8 and 6 respectively. Which Scottish year groups would they be in for sept 2014?

Topsymummy Thu 07-Nov-13 19:47:16

I would say cramond too - very pretty and by the sea. Handy for the airport and still definitely part of Edinburgh. The state schools are good and its not far from a few private schools either. Your children would be p2 and p4. Or you could put your eldest in p5 but she'd be the youngest. If they are born in jan ir feb you can choose if they start at 4.5 or 5.5 yrs old.

TeacakeEater Thu 07-Nov-13 20:25:08

Think about secondary and beyond with the Feb birthday child. If they are the youngest in the older class they would be starting Uni the autumn after their 17th birthday.

Raptorrethy Thu 07-Nov-13 20:29:56

She is 1st feb. I'd rather she was not the youngest...how do I avoid this? Can I?

FannyFifer Thu 07-Nov-13 20:37:27

So she will be 9 in Feb?y DS will be 9 on April. Going into P5 next year.

Try Fife. Dunfermline?

TeacakeEater Thu 07-Nov-13 20:38:52

Speak to the school about where they have spaces.

At the start of primary schooling the children with Jan and Feb birthdays can usually defer without any problem and can go in the following year when they are 5.5.

FannyFifer Thu 07-Nov-13 20:41:27

My Feb child will be deferring. Most jan/feb birthdays do.

Raptorrethy Thu 07-Nov-13 20:43:30

So currently they are P2 and P4 but next August 2014 would go into P3 and P5? I'm confused!

TeacakeEater Thu 07-Nov-13 20:48:21

Yes for August 2014 your children would be P3 and P5.

From what you say you don't want your eldest to go into P6 which she would be eligible for.

dementedma Thu 07-Nov-13 20:50:10

Well bugger me. I live in Scotland and never knew Jan birthdays could defer!
Ds was 4.5 when he started P1 and is now the youngest child in his entire secondary school! He won't be 12 until the end of January, when some of his peers will be turning 13! He could well be going to uni at only 17 and a half. Poor baby

Raptorrethy Thu 07-Nov-13 20:51:28

Ok, thank you for clarifying. I'd rather she has an extra year of schooling if she can...especially if, as FF says, most parents of jan/feb children defer.

TeacakeEater Thu 07-Nov-13 20:51:39

Ok what's confusing you? It took me some time to get my head round the different years - I went to school in England.

(Oh I'd just got to grips with family doing Standard Grades when they went and changed the exam system!)

Raptorrethy Thu 07-Nov-13 20:59:13

Cross posts tea cake - I think I'm clear now! Thank you. I was schooled in England plus DCs now at school in a different country where the cut off months are different again - hence my earlier confusion!

Raptorrethy Thu 07-Nov-13 21:00:32

Demented isn't it strange? They'd go to uni and not even be able to drink alcohol confused
Hope your DS is doing ok anyway!

dementedma Thu 07-Nov-13 21:08:27

Academically he's fine as he's quite bookish and enjoys learning. Socially he has struggled and he has found d high school a bit overwhelming. He does seem a but more babyish than the other lads who all now have that awkward pre.teen look about them where as he still looks like a child .

TimidLivid Thu 07-Nov-13 21:12:44

Linlithgow even teachers In livingston high schools have advised it is the best high school and town is very naice

Piffpaffpoff Thu 07-Nov-13 21:22:05

Aberdour? Lovely wee village, two beaches and a train station. Easy drive to supermarkets in nearby Dalgety Bay and Dunfermline.

Piffpaffpoff Thu 07-Nov-13 21:25:05

Oops, wrong link in my last post! Do have a look if you like adventure sports, but if you really want Aberdour info, best go here.

IrnBruTheNoo Thu 07-Nov-13 21:55:20

Aberdour's quite out the way.

dementedma Thu 07-Nov-13 21:59:12

It has a nice wee castle though

IrnBruTheNoo Thu 07-Nov-13 22:00:24

Cramond probably your best bet, or Balerno.

cazzyg Thu 07-Nov-13 22:13:40

I honestly think Fife and East Lothian would be longer than a 30-40 minute commute at peak times. The traffic along both the bypass and the Forth Road Bridge is horrendous.

The cut off is different up here as it's March rather than September so a 28th Feb birthday would be the youngest and 1st March the oldest and yes Jan and Feb birthdays can defer. A March 2005 birthday would normally equate to P4.

IrnBruTheNoo Thu 07-Nov-13 22:15:36

Possibly East Craigs?

Piffpaffpoff Thu 07-Nov-13 22:19:51

It's Not that out of the way - it's no more than 10 mins along to j2 of the M90. The new bridge should go some way to solving the traffic problems and the M9 spur has made getting to the airport a lot faster.

Cramond is right under the flight path for the airport, lots of planes going over. But then you might like that!

IrnBruTheNoo Thu 07-Nov-13 22:21:16

I was just thinking of travelling time really. Especially in bad weather. Being in and around Edinburgh would make sense if you need to commute.

IrnBruTheNoo Thu 07-Nov-13 22:22:32

Cities and larger towns also have more going on for children, Aberdour (apart from the beaches there) hasn't go much going on.

Sleepyfergus Thu 07-Nov-13 22:35:08

Bonaly is also nice, also second Crammind and Balerno.

Penicuik has a large army training base on its outskirts (Glencourse). My DH was based here a few years ago and would never choose to live here or close to here if his life depended in it. There are nice bus to Penicuik, but the town centre is quite depressing. I also think a 30 min commute from here is highly unachievable. It's double it at least in rush hour (and then some)

Sleepyfergus Thu 07-Nov-13 22:35:33

Cramond even!

Thatballwasin Thu 07-Nov-13 23:36:37

Biggar is 45 mins from Edinburgh when the roads are clear ( have been driving though it for 22 years) and the A702 can be pretty choked in rush hour traffic. West Linton in rush hour could take a good bit more than half an hour in the mornings even though it's only 17 miles from the centre. I'd concentrate on places with bus lanes and/or a train station nearby. Short distances can become long journeys when you're stuck on the city bypass!

I LOVE the back roads around Balerno, up towards the Harlaw reservoir. It feels like being in the middle of nowhere but only 10 miles from the city centre. No 44 bus every five minutes as well. I'd also love to live around juniper green/currie but just off the main road where you're suddenly surrounded by fields.

PrimalLass Thu 07-Nov-13 23:46:59

Aberdour is 10 mins to the bridge and 15 to Dunfermline. Not out of the way IMO. It's only 35 mins on the train to Waverly.

PrimalLass Thu 07-Nov-13 23:50:15

IrnBru I am probably outing myself here but Aberdour has a ton of stuff for children. Tennis, football, shinty, cubs, rainbows, brownies, parks, beaches, gymnastics in Dalgety Bay, swimming at Burntisland. And more beaches within 10 minutes.

PrimalLass Thu 07-Nov-13 23:52:38

New art lessons, lovely cafe, toddlers, Playgroup, Coffee mornings.

PrimalLass Thu 07-Nov-13 23:57:12

Cramond is lovely but the aeroplane noise is bad.

Raptorrethy Fri 08-Nov-13 06:47:31

Sooooo much info - you lot are truly friendly!

So DS would be one of the oldest at march 21st...no bad thing at all for him.

Piffpaffpoff Fri 08-Nov-13 09:15:03

PrimalLass I'm not in Aberdour but nearby and I agree, there's plenty going on there. It's a really nice wee spot and well placed to get to lots of other places too. We come down to the beach after school in the summer, it's lovely! Nice golf course too, if you're into that.

IrnBruTheNoo Fri 08-Nov-13 09:46:21

Balerno/Currie is beautiful, and I agree with you Thatballwasin about the back roads around Balerno, it's so peaceful and quiet.

Balerno High School and No44 bus are the main attractions....

IrnBruTheNoo Fri 08-Nov-13 09:48:37

If I had the money I'd sooner live in Edinburgh for DC education, than I would in Fife. If you can afford it, you're best buying property in Edinburgh.

PrimalLass Fri 08-Nov-13 10:02:16

We'll have to agree to disagree on that one. Our life is immeasurably better since we moved out of Edinburgh.

Raptorrethy Fri 08-Nov-13 10:17:23

So - in your opinion, is it truly a friendly area to live in? Do people chat to each other? Having lived abroad where little everyday things can be a struggle, we're keen to find a place where people smile smile

ratspeaker Fri 08-Nov-13 10:19:03

30 minutes to the airport will totally depend on the time of day.
I timed it this morning, from leaving East Edinburgh at 05.29 to airport 05.51 by car using the bypass
There is a dedicated airport bus link, runs 24 hours a day, that uses the bus lanes at peak time and reckons it gets into the city centre at Waverley Bridge in 30 minutes( you can get off/on at stops on the route). £3.50 for single journey, free if you have a ridacard.

for city of Edinburgh school catchment areas

for an idea of house prices

IrnBruTheNoo Fri 08-Nov-13 11:13:14

Fife doesn't have a lot going for it, unless you like the rural life. The beaches are good, I do agree on that one.

I lived all my days in Fife up until a few years ago. Duloch Park has been completely ruined because of the all the housing developments since 2000. It's just too built up now. And it's also pushed property prices up for those who have lived in Fife for years, so they are effectively priced out of the market because of outsiders. It's just absolutely crazy.

IrnBruTheNoo Fri 08-Nov-13 11:14:19

Yes, Balerno and Currie are both very friendly areas.

DH was brought up in both these parts of Edinburgh and has nothing bad to say about them.

PrimalLass Fri 08-Nov-13 11:18:07

So - in your opinion, is it truly a friendly area to live in? Do people chat to each other? Having lived abroad where little everyday things can be a struggle, we're keen to find a place where people smile

Very friendly. It takes community and committee-type-stuff to the nth degree grin For example, just voted the winner in the Beautiful Coastal Village in the UK, all down to hard work of the committee.
Channel 4 were going to do their 'Big Brother Village' programme here but the locals said no thanks. They ended up doing it somewhere else.

The big BUT is secondary education. A lot of people send their kids private in Edinburgh, but all the parents I speak to are happy with Inverkeithing.

PrimalLass Fri 08-Nov-13 11:19:28

Also, the festival every year is brilliant.


oldclothcat Fri 08-Nov-13 11:19:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cazzyg Fri 08-Nov-13 11:32:44

Yes I find there is a reasonable sense of community. I currently live in Falkirk which is one of the larger towns in the central belt and I know all my neighbours. The school playground at pick up time isnt cliquey. There's a lot going on for children and families and it's been quite easy to make friends.

I grew up in Linlithgow and my Family still live there. Again I find it a friendly place. It's quite small and again there is a lot of community activity to get involved in eg am dram groups, sports clubs etc.

We moved back from London when we wanted to have children. Personally I think this is a great part of the world to grow up. Decent cities in Edinburgh and Glasgow, easy access to beautiful countryside eg east neuk of fife, highlands, Loch Lomond etc. there are also good universities nearby, festivals such as the Edinburgh festival, science festival etc. I also like the education system. The emphasis is on breadth, so pupils generally study more subjects before specialising at university level. I think it makes for a more rounded knowledge and leaves options open until later.

IrnBruTheNoo Fri 08-Nov-13 11:37:33

There are pros and cons to whatever city or town you end up buying property in, really. It just depends what you are after as a family growing up long term. What are your interests, and that sort of thing. We can all favour one town over another til the cows come home, but it really is up to you OP!

IrnBruTheNoo Fri 08-Nov-13 11:39:10

I personally would not want DC educated anywhere other than in Scotland, because I love the education system here. Many local authorities are also looking to increase the preschool hours for 3 and 4 year olds too in the not so distant future.

SunnyL Fri 08-Nov-13 11:47:23

I've not read the whole thread but I'm in Roslin, Midlothian. It's a smallish village (500 houses) but has all the amenities of a larger town, shop, post office, doctors, dentist, pub etc. it has a great community feel with good opportunities to socialise. Even better it's 20 mins from the airport and 30 mins from Edinburgh city centre. It's getting a lot of attention since they filmed the Davinci Code here so some places are getting spruced up as well.

Raptorrethy Fri 08-Nov-13 13:51:04


I can't thank all the contributors enough. DH and I have been plotitng places on a map and we are planning to fly up early next year to visit a shortlist.

I am going to ask for this thread to be moved as, although I have it on paper, I think it's too awesome to slip away after 30 days!

thanks and brew and wine to ALL OF YOU.

PrimalLass Fri 08-Nov-13 17:11:55

If you do end up in Aberdour let me know. We'd have a child in the same class grin

UnicornsNotRiddenByGrownUps Fri 08-Nov-13 20:46:40

Aberdour kids often quite often get a placing request to Balwearie High School in Kirkcaldy which is a pretty good school.

motherstongue Fri 08-Nov-13 21:10:29

Many of the towns and villages mentioned are great but you should seriously consider the secondary school options and factor that into your decision even if it seems a long way away. Schools like Linlithgow Academy (which is nearly always in the top 10 state schools in Scotland) can only be attended if you live in the catchment area. So, in Scotland, that normally means 1 high school per small town and no choice. If you are too far from Edinburgh to do a daily commute into the centre of the city for the Private schools or in an area where the private schools offer a bus service or have a train station on your doorstep, your only choice is the local high school. As regards a great education in Scotland, I couldn't agree more, in the past we have had a great education system however myself and many other parents are yet to be convinced by the curriculum for excellence. This is the first year for pupils sitting the Nationals and many parents feel that the breadth of the education has narrowed considerably. At primary, the perception is that curriculum for excellence is working better than at secondary. There have been threads on education that you could no doubt look into.

kaumana Fri 08-Nov-13 21:22:54

mother good post. I was getting concerned that the OP would look at areas, not understanding how the catchment areas work/ access to independent schools etc

I'll say it again, OP, as you really have no idea of where you want to be I would highly suggest renting a property for a short term in areas that have spaces for your children.

I have seen that you are planning to come and have a look at areas in the new year. To narrow those areas down I would start making phone calls to state/independents to see where places may exist.

wigglybeezer Fri 08-Nov-13 21:23:36

I second anyone suggesting Linlithgow, my sister moved there after being an expat and she loves it, they are a very busy family as there is so much on offer and good schools. Two of my kids go to Kinross High, I think it is very good, Kinross has good Motorway links and has more attractive countryside than Linlithgow IMO.

Sleepyfergus Sat 09-Nov-13 05:54:14

Something else that should maybe be in your radar is that applications to private schools are usually by the end Nov in the year previous to when you want them to start, ie. now for next year. They do consider applications outwith these times though, but smaller amt of places.

PrimalLass Sat 09-Nov-13 09:00:32

Aberdour kids often quite often get a placing request to Balwearie High School in Kirkcaldy which is a pretty good school.

The results are much of a muchness but I agree. Quite a few people I know are going to do that.

TeacakeEater Sat 09-Nov-13 23:37:33

Yes to phoning schools re places, then maybe you can visit potential schools on your trip.

How serious are you about private? It would mean you could buy cheaper housing outside of expensive catchment areas such as Linlithgow.

Others may put me right on this but don't 25% of Edinburgh children attend privates?

Sleepyfergus Sun 10-Nov-13 07:59:01

Teacake - that's prob about right kids going private. We have a disproportionate no of private schools in Edinburgh! Will be interested to know the stats on this too.

motherstongue Sun 10-Nov-13 08:29:57

Something else that came to mind. Is the move to Scotland going to be long term in as much as the DC will finish schooling in Scotland or are you likely to move again prior to that? If the DC need to move whilst at secondary school the different systems could make the transition elsewhere a lot more difficult. Some of the Private schools follow the English curriculum which would perhaps give you more options, if they are affordable. I am not, however, advocating that private is always better than state it is just that it is another option that could be a security blanket, if needed.

lurkerspeaks Sun 10-Nov-13 08:46:05

Firstly you have to know I'm a city girl. The thought of moving back to suburbia or even worse, a rural idyll, makes me itchy.

I think the first thing you need to consider is the kids education. There are places on this thread (primarily Linlithgow) which have excellent state schools. Move a bit closer in and you start seeing the Edinburgh private school effect (more independent school places per head of population than any other uk town, I think) ergo many many middle class/involved parents send their kids privately which has a detrimental effect on the state schools. They aren't terrible but can be lacking bright motivated kids with PYmtA parents. So if you fall into that camp as a family IMO you either need to live somewhere everyone (or almost everyone) goes to state school or pony up the cash for private.

Primary is fine many many kids transition at secondary level. When I was growing up eyebrows would be raised about kids going private earlier than secondary "too thick to get in later" was usually the view. However the independent schools have realized thAt child are is their USP and lots of my friends use them at primary for that reason.

Secondly do you really want to be 30-40minutes from the airport at all times of day? If so I would avoid anything g over the bridge in Fife or East Lothian.

I think based entirely on value judgements you should look at Linlithgow (if you want state school a go go) and Cramond (if private secondary is an option). Maybe Balerno and Ratho too.

I'm potentially outing myself but I know Cramond well and the plane noise really isn't a big deal and the primary is good. 400k will get you a large but ugly 70s villa. If you want pretty you will have to go much smaller...

If the commuting time to airport is less important at rush hour (remember Scottish roads aren't that busy) and a drive home isn't always a chore then E. Lothian is good - North Berwick High catchment would be my suggestion so Aberlady, Gullane or NB itself.

Feel free to PM me if you want more info.

SunnyL Sun 10-Nov-13 10:22:56

The option of living outside Edinburgh and getting a cheaper house while sending kids to private school in Edinburgh is very common. I grew up in a very popular area for that (Eskbank, Midlothian) It's a naice area with big Victorian, georgian and Edwardian houses and lots of professionals live there and commute into Edinburgh. It's also very good for the airport. However we used to feel sorry for the private school kids as they'd be getting the bus to school at 7.30am and wouldn't get home til at least 5pm (later often if they had sports and prep). This might change when the borders railway gets built but as most of the good private schools are another bus journey away from the train station it's still a very long day for kids.

PrimalLass Sun 10-Nov-13 10:46:13

Cramond well and the plane noise really isn't a big deal

Have to disagree on that one. It was a deal breaker for me. There was a particular one around 6am that always woke me up.

Raptorrethy Sun 10-Nov-13 18:17:22

Thank you...I am overwhelmed by the great advice on this thread, all the links and carefully considered comments.

We have a lot to think about and I may well be PMing some of you over the next few months...thank you, thank you!

fishyscott Sun 10-Nov-13 20:39:47

What a fantastic thread this is.... lots of info...just what I need as our move from NZ is imminent. We too are after a 30min commute to the aiport. To date I have not found a school with 3 places for my kids (P1,P3,P6) so we are now looking at Midlothian - any info on Rosewell and local schools would be appreciated. Apparently the local school has spaces - it's a small school with lots of composite classes - what's the general opinion on those - my kids currently attend a large primary school (500+) which offers lots of extra activities, clubs etc - will going to a small school be too much of a change for them (and me)!

motherstongue Sun 10-Nov-13 22:07:52

Hello Fishy - Composite classes can work well and you shouldn't be afraid of them as long as the ethos of the school is that each child works to their ability. You would think if it is a wee school that this might be more achievable if the class sizes are small. However, just because it is a small school doesn't mean the class sizes will be small because the local authorities allocate teachers to schools on the basis of the whole school role, it is then up to the head teacher to distribute the kids accordingly. Saying that, I think the maximum kids allowed in a composite class is 25. I stand to be corrected!!!!

With regards extra activities at school, from my own experience in my home town, the extra activities after school are very few. Nearly all the kids do extra curricular stuff with outside organisations like dancing, football, swimming etc. if you want lots of extra curricular activities incorporated into school life you would probably need to look at private school. Hope that helps

SunnyL Mon 11-Nov-13 12:47:24

Hi Fishy. I live 2 miles from Rosewell. It's a small village with a reasonably strong community but it isn't a very rich area and the village is looking a little run down these days. I looked very closely at buying a house there because of how cheap it was but I'm quite glad I didn't in the end as where I ended up has more amenities and is better organised.

Close by but nice villages with good primary schools are Howgate, Carrington, Temple and Roslin.

RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 20-Nov-13 17:21:37

Hello there

We've moved this to Property/DIY at the OP's request.

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 20:45:43

I am re-animating this thread as we are just back from Edinburgh! We looked at nearly all the places mentioned here but I still have more questions so here we go…

Aberdour - pretty and we liked the beach but too far from Edinburgh schools and airport. We don't want to have to rely on the bridge.

S. Queensferry - not really for us, we think. Where do you go for your shopping apart from the Tesco? Where is Boots, bookshops, etc?

Cramond - very pretty but it seemed tiny…not much there at all (did we miss a bit?!) and very expensive from what we saw online (as a few of you had already said)

Linlithgow - was not what we were expecting sad we thought there would be more shops and a bit more to it, somehow…again, if you live there, where do you go for more shopping and amenities? The loch and the castle are beautiful, though, as is the countryside…and the lady in the little Boots was lovely grin

West Linton was GORGEOUS and exactly what we would want - it had a proper village feel to it complete with green etc. However, DCs would go to senior school in Edinburgh and we think the commute would be awful every day. Airport would be doable.

Currie, Balerno, Juniper Green - someone very sagely commented before on what our expectation of a 'village' is and they hit the nail on the head as to why, again, these places were not what we had thought. Unless we missed something there seemed to be just a road running through and no proper centre, village green, that kind of thing. Coming from Dorset, for example, the villages seem to be completely different (apart from West Linton). Maybe it is simply a geographical difference??

Countryside - STUNNING. Idyllic.

The people we met - LOVELY. Just lovely. Couldn't be friendlier or more helpful smile

So. We are now thinking about whether there are any suburb-type places further in to Edinburgh itself that are greenish still and naive but affordable to us. Any ideas, fab Scottish Mnetters?

Unless you go private kids from West Linton go to Peebles High rather than Edinburgh.

cazzyg Sun 15-Jun-14 21:09:16

So from Linlithgow there is a Leisure Centre with swimming pool. Cinema and larger shops are in Falkirk or Luvingston which are both about 10 miles away. Tbh Linlithgow is "desirable" because it is the size it is and isn't any bigger. There's a lot of resistance to larger shops dud to the potential impact on the high st. It has lots of independent shops at the moment and that adds to the character of the place. Remember too that both Edinburgh and Glasgow are nearby and most people travel quite happily for theatres, shops, concerts etc.

readyforno2 Sun 15-Jun-14 21:10:00

I can second what Badgers said. Peebles High is really good and has recently had a huge gym/fitness facilities overhaul.
West Linton is a lovely place to live.

dementedma Sun 15-Jun-14 21:13:07

The village green thing isn't as common here as in England.
Not in Edinburgh but on the right side of the bridge is Bo'ness. Would that suit?

Also - we should get jobs selling houses in Westy, Ready - loads of people in West Linton commute to Edinburgh. It's twenty minutes by car. I'm assuming you wouldn't enrol your kids at Fettes and just dump them on the Stagecoach to Princes Street of a morning.

fiestabelle1 Sun 15-Jun-14 21:30:23

Have you considered East Lothian? Gullane is lovely, as is Aberlady, both commutable but not sure re timings. East Lothian is lovely, beaches, scenery and great community feel. Ormiston Village is also highly thought of, but I would consider fee-paying for secondary.

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 21:31:27

You are right about villages, in Scotland village greens are a rarity, mostly houses are laid out along the Main Street, I think generally Scotland does small towns better than villages. Stenton has a village greeny feel but is the wrong side of Edinburgh for the airport.

If you went up and down the High Street in Linlithgow you would have missed the big shops as they are a little further out due to parking etc. ( but handy for residential areas). There is a big Sainsburys, a Homebase etc, and there is also a decent sport centre with a pool/ gym etc.

Maybe us Scots just have lower expectations, everywhere in Scotland is fairly ordinary, nice ordinary, but not outstanding. I think it is relaxing because you are never fretting that other people are living somewhere much, much better than you.

I live in Dollar by the way, it is quite villagey but a lot people live here to send their kids to Dollar Academy which is private, other options at secondary involve compromises. You can get to Edinburgh airport in about half an hour if you set off early enough though.

I chose Dollar, my sister chose Linlithgow. I live in prettier surroundings but my kids have less to do and have to travel to high school, she went with head, I went with heart, now that my kids are older I am a bit envious of her choice.

dementedma Sun 15-Jun-14 21:33:48

Dollar is vair nice!

bluewonderful Sun 15-Jun-14 21:34:29

What about Kirknewton? It's a proper village (with a "green", well a park) 10 miles from city, has shop, post office, pub and chippy. Local primary but catchment for Balerno high. Fantastic community atmosphere and lots of local stuff going on (v active facebook page will give you an idea). Houses well within your budget. If you work in town the park and ride is 10mins drive.

Sunbeam18 Sun 15-Jun-14 21:36:27

Hi there,
I'm in South Queensferry and we shop either locally at the Tesco or Scotmid for food, topped up with farm shop stuff from Craigie Farm nearby. For other shops (clothes, books, etc) we would head into town (Edinburgh) which is 20 mins away. I think most villages around Edinburgh don't have a great deal in terms of great local shops/independent bookshops etc as they are just too close to Edinburgh with its great choices. Bo'ness has a nice little bookshop and independent shops but not sure if it's what you are looking for. A lot of the areas of Edinburgh itself are little villages (Stockbridge, Bruntsfield, Morningside) that might appeal?

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 21:45:28

Yes, vair nice but a bit dominated by the Academy, it can feel " us and them " if your kids don't attend. The academy grounds are like the ultimate village green though, cricket and everything!

English people seem to like it.

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 21:48:02

Thank you! I keep being bowled over by how helpful you lot are. And those are not empty words - we currently live abroad where it is not particularly 'naturally' friendly. We were chatting away to the lad cleaning the rooms in our hotel this morning - so helpful grin

Will check out the Edinburgh areas that sunbeam mentioned.

Yes, we looked quite thoroughly at Linlithgow and saw the S-burys, Homebase etc. Thank you.

badgers West Linton 20 mins by car to Edinburgh - what did we do wrong?! It honestly seemed much longer, using the sat-nav…which route would you take?

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 21:48:44

wiggly where are you referring to? (Sorry!)

prettybird Sun 15-Jun-14 21:52:21

Don't know the area myself as I'm a Glaswegian but Philpstoun near Linlithgow looks nice if you're looking for a tiny small village. I go there annually for a cycling race (hill climb) and there seems to be a nice community spirit. Don't know how much of that is due to the cyclists and how much the local community though wink

dementedma Sun 15-Jun-14 21:52:53

wiggly is talking about Dollar in Clackmannanshire. Its lovely and has a good private school, Dollar Academy.
Not too far from Edinburgh at all.

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 21:53:41

Sorry, I was sort of replying to dementdma's comment about Dollar but I am slow at typing so ended up with other posts in between.

cloutiedumpling Sun 15-Jun-14 21:55:55

If you are looking within the Edinburgh boundaries then Colinton is quite nice.

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 21:57:07

Pretty bird my BIL runs a cycling club in Linlithgow, it is exactly the sort of thing that Linlithgow does well.

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 21:58:53

wigglybeezer Dollar looks lovely. How would you get into Edinburgh and how long does it take? Where do you shop for food?

PrimalLass Sun 15-Jun-14 21:59:14

Aberdour - pretty and we liked the beach but too far from Edinburgh schools and airport. We don't want to have to rely on the bridge.

If it's any use, kids are bussed to Stewart's Melville from Dalgety Bay, and to Dollar Academy from Aberdour. I took the park and ride bus from Inverkeithing to the airport and it took 20 minutes.

From here, if I wanted proper shops I would go to Dunfermline, over to Livingston or (if I had to) - Edinburgh (35 mins).

prettybird Sun 15-Jun-14 22:07:06

wigglybeezer - it's a hill climb run (very well) by West Lothian Clarion. Ds (13) enjoys going as it's one of the last road races for the Youths of the season.

dementedma Sun 15-Jun-14 22:08:01

From Dollar you could shop in Alloa, Falkirk or Stirling.
Stirling is great for shops.

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 22:13:34

People tend to drive over to the M90 and then switch to the park and ride at Inverkeithing or drive right in if they have parking at work, tales about an hour on average but the Forth road bridge can be a bottleneck, they are building a new bridge which will speed up the journey. If you are going to the airport you go over the Clackmannanshire bridge and then along the M9.
I use the local butcher and coop for food plus the major supermarkets in Alloa for big shops.
We have a nice state primary, a surgery, part time library, chemist, deli, cafe, pub, a castle! Brownies and scouts etc. Not so good for teenagers unless they are at the academy which keeps them well occupied with the usual extra curriculars.
Big old family houses are dear though, smaller 70's houses are good value, not much choice in between.
It is a very middle class bubble!

Sunbeam18 Sun 15-Jun-14 22:15:48

I second the Colinton suggestion within Edinburgh. For a vibrant city community with access to great green space and great local shops I'd put Stockbridge and Bruntsfield at the top of the list. The house prices will reflect the amazing location though. Would you consider a flat with garden?

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 22:16:05

prettybird, my BIL started West Lothian Clarion up, he was a Commonwealth Games Baton carrier today! My DN always does the hill climb too.

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 22:18:19

demented, I have been shopping in Stirling all my life, where the Miner's Welfare once stood is now a Waitrose! My late Granny would be amazed.

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 22:22:55

wiggly I cannot believe we have just come back from Edinburgh and surrounding areas and WE DID NOT KNOW about Dollar and the Academy. How I wish I had re-started this thread yesterday!!!!

I think the nice Edinburgh bits (Morningside etc) are out of our league but thank you for the suggestions.

The difficulty arises though with the risk of the DCs not getting into Dollar Academy. We couldn't commit to such a move without knowing…not sure how the logistics would work. If they went to DA it would be a life choice, really, i.e. to set them up with an amazing education as we would be incredibly, completely stretched financially...

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 22:23:28

There's a Waitrose in Stirling? SOLD!!!! grin

SquattingNeville Sun 15-Jun-14 22:33:57

This is what your budget gets you where I stay - Duloch Park in Dunfermline - there are also lots of new builds going up nearby too. Good local schools, with excellent facilities the catchment primary school has been open for 3 years now. Secondary schools are good too, both Catholic and non-denominational. Easy access to the M90 for driving across to Edinburgh, also right next to the Halbeath Park&Ride for getting buses, which also serve the airport. It's on the outskirts of Dunfermline and there are LOADS of commuters who live in the area. The catchment schools tend to have better reputations compared to other local schools. There are also buses that go to Dollar Academy from Dunfermline, if you wanted your kids to get in there.

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 22:39:13

It is fairly straightforward getting into Dollar AcAdemy at prep stage as long as your kids are reasonably bright and presentable, it's not half as scary as popular schools down south, sometimes people have to wait a year for a place but they just send them to Strathdevon Primary, our local state primary and wait for a place to become available ( lots of the Academy teachers send their kids to Strathdevon too ). My kids have placing requests to Kinross High as we are arty types with erratic incomes and can't afford the fees! Happy with their education though.

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 22:43:05

I should get a finders fee from Dollar Academy, you are not the first person on Mumsnet who has ended up sold on it and I am not a massive fan of private education! It is a good school though.

readyforno2 Sun 15-Jun-14 22:54:20

Haha. Yes we should Badgers..
There are busses which run to and from Edinburgh too. When I was at school I had friends who bussed it to private school in Edinburgh.
Yeah 20-25 mins into town but it is a road that I know very well (especially the good overtaking spotswink)

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 23:00:21

Wiggly - how about getting in at senior level ie at 11?

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 23:00:35

Oh and the cut off date for school years is January 1st at Dollar. One of the harder times to get a place is P6 (called junior 1 at Dollar) as that is when a lot of kids start. The next big intake is S1 at 12. There are formal entry tests and interviews but they can't be that hard as many of the kids I know who have got in were not top of the class at primary. It can be pot luck what spaces are available further down the school.

Raptorrrethy Sun 15-Jun-14 23:03:38

Thank you smile

wigglybeezer Sun 15-Jun-14 23:08:50

I think there is the usual verbal and non-verbal reasoning plus a maths and english paper, not sure what else, don't think it is as bad as I have read about grammar school entry down south, I think some people do use tutoring but not many. I could ask one of my friends.
Phone the school and ask, everything is winding up for the end of term here so someone should have the time to talk to you.
If you visit the school I live virtually next door, if you see a harrassed middle aged woman herding a gang of red- haired boys into a car, that will be me!

Raptorrrethy Mon 16-Jun-14 05:44:20

PS thank you again, and sorry not to reply to each of you by name but I really appreciate the comments.
Wiggly - if we end up coming to Dollar I'll be in touch! grin

dementedma Mon 16-Jun-14 08:00:30

wiggly my kids went/go to Kinross High school too on placing requests!

rapto the deli in dollar is just fab!

wigglybeezer Mon 16-Jun-14 08:15:56

Rapptorrrety, you have been seduced by the lovely photos on the Dollar website haven't you? I feel I have to slow you down a bit for the sake of your family finances, if you are considering living as far out as Dollar would you consider Dunblane?

That said, I think selecting somewhere to live can be a bit like choosing between an arranged marriage and a love match.

wigglybeezer Mon 16-Jun-14 08:23:17

Dementedma, I always end up on these threads because, between friends and family, I have lived or spent time in almost all the popular locations in Central Scotland. I shouldn't really encourage people to move up, it pushes the property prices up but I can't resist singing the praises of Scotland and I genuinely want people to feel they have made a good choice.

Raptorrrethy Mon 16-Jun-14 09:12:21

What we would want, ideally, is a rural property but within a few miles of miles of some shops/life. We lived for many years in a village five miles from the nearest proper town and it was great. Also ideally we would be SW of Dollar as DH would be commuting to Edinburgh Airport.

What's the weather like around you?! Same as Edinburgh pretty much?

wigglybeezer Mon 16-Jun-14 09:30:52

The villages south west of Dollar are significantly less posh, you want to look at Muckhart or some of the villages between Dollar and Kinross ( as you gain time by being nearer the M90 and also have Kinross High as an option). Try Rumbling Bridge, Crook of Devon, Drum, Cleish. Muckhart is the prettiest and nearest Dollar). Nearer Stirling is Blairlogie which is very cute but a big line of pylons is due to be sited near it in a few years. is work near the airport or do you need the airport for travel?

Weather wise I would say we are a little wetter than Edinburgh as the lovely hills do catch the odd rain cloud, it gets drier again as you go further east.

You are going to have to compromise on something, probably commute time.

wigglybeezer Mon 16-Jun-14 09:42:04

Just read that work is at the airport so you would be better nearer Stirling ( although I know a family in Dollar where both parents work for airlines) most of the villages near Stirling are former mining or mill villages, not really village greeny. Doune is nice but about 5 miles from the end of the motorway. Again, there are very few villages/ towns in Central Scotland that are entirely lovely, they are mostly ordinary with nice bits. Bridge of Allan is handy for the motorway and has school buses to Dollar as does Dunblane. Are you sure you have discounted West Lothian?

Raptorrrethy Mon 16-Jun-14 11:02:15

I think so, wiggly. We really looked closely but nothing quite fitted the school/budget/location conundrum.

Crutchlow35 Mon 16-Jun-14 13:20:04

Kinross/Milnathort. Excellent schools, some shopping and on the motorway into Edinburgh so you can either use any of the park and ride facilities at Kinross, Halbeath or Ferry Toll or park in Inverkeithing, Dunfermline and Rostyh and get the train into Edinburgh.

Sunbeam18 Mon 16-Jun-14 23:09:40

Have you looked at Dunfermline? It's a lovely town with great parks. What parts of South Queensferry did you see? The High St and surrounds are lovely and are right on the beach, and we are 10 mins from the airport and within City of Edinburgh boundaries. I know there are some rough bits, but to be honest you would struggle to find somewhere that doesn't in your radius.

Timeisawastin Mon 16-Jun-14 23:26:19

I'm in Dunfermline, although originally from Edinburgh, via 10 yrs in the Glasgow area. I like Dunfermline although it has a bit of small-town mentality. It's convenient for lots of places and has plenty of amenities. The housing is plentiful and relatively cheap (although I would personally avoid Duloch Park). We are in a small village very near the town and my DC are bussed into a good state secondary school, recently inspected with excellent results. Both are doing well academically and will almost certainly be off to uni in the next couple of years.

The new bridge over the Forth will be open in a couple of years and should take some of the 'crapshoot' issues of the Forth Road Bridge away. For us, moving to Dunfermline when our DC were little was a good move.

Rockdoctor Tue 17-Jun-14 06:26:44

Hi Raptorrethy, we are in a similar position although our move has now been put back 12 months. We realise we are priced out of Edinburgh itself (for the lifestyle we want), and are gravitating towards the Stirling/Dunblane area, although we love Aberdour as well. If private schools are an option, have you looked at Beaconhurst School in Bridge of Allan. It goes through from infants to sixth form and we were very impressed when we visited last year. As far as I know it is non-selective and has some impressive results and a lovely feel.

Watching this thread with interest.

Raptorrrethy Tue 17-Jun-14 08:56:59

Thank you for more replies. It is so good to hear from people who live in the area already and recommend it.

Sunbeam, we drove along the high street in SQ (I think?) and there were cafes and a couple of galleries etc, and right on the sea front.

Time thank you for the info about Dunfermline.

Rockdoctor how interesting that you are planning a move there too! We feel exactly the same about Edinburgh - for what we want, we just can't have it on our budget so we are looking further afield. Beaconhurst looks lovely. We need to go back to visit Dollar and Beaconhurst, now…another trip to arrange. Obvs now we will wait until later in the year as schools are shutting up shop now…
How old are your DCs?

Rockdoctor Tue 17-Jun-14 09:42:40

Raptorrethy my DCs are 6 and 3. The youngest will start reception this year in England but would not start school in Scotland until 2015 (one reason for delaying the move). As I said, we visited Beaconhurst earlier this year. I hadn't looked at Dollar in much detail as I had it in my mind that it was a boys school - I need to go back and do some more research.

MostlyCake Tue 17-Jun-14 09:54:42

Kinross isn't 30 mins from the airport during rush hour and there are indoor chicken sheds fairly close by which STINK out Kinross if the winds blowing in the right direction....

There is a private school in Perth which is supposed to be good...can't remember the name.....

Crutchlow35 Tue 17-Jun-14 13:25:14

I've never smelt the chicken Mostly.

PrimalLass Tue 17-Jun-14 18:29:43

Strathallan, MostlyCake?

Also, St Leonards in St Andrews. Neither are 30 mins from the airport, however.

PrimalLass Tue 17-Jun-14 18:30:41

There is also Cliftonhall, at Newbridge. Now that is in the flight path near the airport.

wigglybeezer Tue 17-Jun-14 19:33:57

Rockdoctor, Dollar would be most offended that you thought it was a boys school!, It has been co-ed right from the start in the early 1800's! It used to be grant aided, my Dad went there for nothing and fees for local pupils were means tested, unfortunately it is still good but now very expensive!

Strathallan follows the English exam system which is useful for families that might move back down south in the middle of high school.

Rockdoctor Tue 17-Jun-14 20:36:31

Thanks wiggly - I need to read this thread in more detail and do some more research. I get the feeling Dollar is quite academic, which would suit one of my DCs but probably not the other. Lovely part of the world though and I'm quite keen to make the move at some stage.

Raptorrrethy Sat 28-Jun-14 10:03:27

DH off to Dollar next week grin to check it out. Any last place names he should see? (Potential places to live.) So exciting!

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