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Moving to buckinghamshire(11 Posts)
Hi I am hoping someone can help me, my husband has taken new employment in Amersham which is going to mean a possible relocation!!!
my son is in a great Catholic Primary School at the moment and my main concern is getting him into another good school and also the best places to live/avoid in Buckinghamshire. also and idea of the secondary schools. we have been told that Alyesbury is nice but I just don't know where to start!!!!
Advice would be gratefully appreciated x
I would avoid Aylesbury personally (cheaper but a bit rough).
In your ideal world what are you looking for/how much do you have to spend? Quality and house prices vary wildly in Buckinghamshire from ex-council house estates to multi-million pound country estates.
Oh, lucky you! Amersham is a lovely town. I grew up living in Holmer Green/Hazlemere, quite rural and I loved it. Good Grammar schools for secondary if your son is likely to go down the 12 plus route. Royal Grammar school in Wycombe, Dr Challoner's in Amersham, both are all boys and academic. Too long ago for me to be able to comment on primary schools! Lots of nice villages: Great and Little Missenden, Penn St, The Lee to name but a few. Chesham and Beaconsfield also nice but I don't know those areas so well. Amersham and Chesham are on the tube which is handy but because of that there will be a price premium for houses.
Town or village, commute time for DH and budget for house buying are all key to finding the right area for you.
Amersham and area around has good transport links by road (M40) and train.
Hope that helps!
I live v near Amersham OP so can maybe give you some pointers about things you need to think about.
1. Property is expensive round here, will you be renting or buying? How much of a commute is your dh used to?
2. Are you used to urban life? While we're not the sticks it can be quite quiet of you're coming from a city!
3. Schools - a whole minefield of their own. Bucks is still 11+ which has lots of consequences. How old is your ds? At primary level there are lots of good schools but they are generally all very oversubscribed.
It's a great area to live in, just 30 mins and you're in London, 25 and you'll be at Heathrow while the place is still surrounded by fields and woodland.
Amersham itself is expensive but Chesham is cheaper and more socially mixed, Hazlemere and Holmer Green as suggested upthread are good too.
I grew up near there too and wouldn't go for Aylesbury by choice. It's also a fair trek from Amersham.
As others have said, it all depends on budget. If it were me I'd live in Marlow.
I don't know if there is a catholic secondary school in Amersham but my sister went to St Bernard's in High Wycombe. No idea how it is these days, it was good then but that was a good while ago.
St Bernards is now called St Michael's now and I know children come from all over to go to it. I went there in the very dim and distant past. So where you live shouldn't be too much of a problem as there seems to be transport available to all that go there (with you paying for it of course).
I live in a village to the north-west of High Wycombe which is very nice with some not too expensive houses. I would avoid Micklefield, Castlefield and some areas of Totteridge if you are thinking of Wycombe. The outlying villages are probably your best bet.
PM me if you want any more info.
There's also the option of St Joan of Arc in Rickmansworth.
we're from the chalfonts and the schools there - junior and senior are excellent - also good mix of price of houses.
Arguably, getting the right secondary school is mor important that then primary school, so when researching where to live, always keep secondary in mind. It's important to avoid getting sucked into anecdotal information about which schools are better, and stick to information which is as objective as possible. Start with the Ofsted reports. I always recommend www.how-to-choose-a-school.org/ because it tries to be objective, and is not for profit.
If a Catholic primary school is important to you then I suggest looking south of Amersham, towards the Chalfonts. You've either got Our Ladys in Chesham Bois (single form entry) or St Josephs in Chalfont St Peter (2 form entry). I used to work at St Josephs and loved it, but the head and most staff have changed since then so I can't say what it's like now.
You need to have an alternative to the Grammar schools that you're happy with - I have too much experience of very bright children not passing the 11+ to take anything for granted. Chalfont Community College in Chalfont St Peter is well regarded and everyone I know with children there is very happy, although it is a very large school so may not be your cup of tea.
As mentioned above, Joan of Arc in Rickmansworth is a favoured option for Catholic DC who don't get the 11+(it's in Herts where there is no 11+, so a "true" comprehensive), and I've sent a fair few children to St Bernards/St Michaels. Again, I've only heard good about both.
Finally, there's St Bernards Grammar School in Slough if you want a Catholic Grammar school, are prepared to put them through 2 different 11+ exams, and can sort out the car sharing to get them there...
Very few places in Bucks to avoid living in - just think about if you want a town or village as it can be VERY rural round here!!
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