I think we have to move to Oxford...

(14 Posts)
CopingWithChange Wed 22-Jun-16 01:48:59

I probably need a grip (have name changed as this is actual details so don't want it on my usual chat name) but please be a bit kind - I always struggle to adjust to change and this is going to be the second whole life shake up in the space of a year.

I think we're going to have to move to Oxford as it looks like that's where DH's job will be. We're currently in NZ (also for said job) so have moved with 3 kids for a short term contract but while we had hoped to return to our home at the end, it looks like the realistic chance of the job he wants isn't going to work there. I'm struggling more than a bit as I want to feel that we're going home and picking up our life, not starting from scratch all over again, but I'm going to have to get over it - it's hardly that we're moving to Syria.

So I'm trying to get practical. He'd be based at the Churchill hospital and our kids will all be (just) KS2 so we'd need places for them (boys & girl). In the same school is a major requirement, and obviously we need to have an eye to what happens for secondary. They've had to make the adjustment to a new school here so I want one that will be welcoming and nice as they start all over again, esp youngest DS who is currently Y2 and has found it tougher socially here - I don't want him to lose any confidence he has left. I've already been sobbing that they can't go back to their old school, it's just lovely, alongside being a good school. What schools should I be looking at? I haven't posted on the local boards as I'm not sure whether it would be Oxford or Oxfordshire - the city doesn't seem to have many villages that near it, just a big motorway round it but we would move a bit further out if there are some we've missed.

I have no idea about areas in Oxford, but I believe it's the most expensive place in the country in costs relative to incomes. We have a house (currently rented out) and the thought of selling it, buying another and moving is just overwhelming so I guess renting it again and us renting in Oxford is an option to give us a bit of time on the selling/buying. We're getting £1,500pcm for our house. I have no idea what it would be worth, we paid £400k nearly 10 years ago and it's a decent area near another university city.

Any help much appreciated.

waitingforsomething Wed 22-Jun-16 01:57:18

Hi op I totally sympathise. I am crap at change and have had to relocate to Singapore for my Dhs Job for a year. Is tough. I am also looking forward to picking up my old life in 8 months time so deeply sympathise.
In other news though I used to live in Oxford and it's lovely. Really lovely and if you have to go somewhere it's not a bad gig at all. Summer town and Kidlington are where most of the families seem to head and has great communities and primary schools. Transport into pxford centre is quick and easy flowers

Blondie1984 Wed 22-Jun-16 02:41:14

I had to move from Oxford for work reasons about 4 years ago and still miss it terribly - it's a lovely place
This is a great website for all things Oxford
www.dailyinfo.co.uk

Blondie1984 Wed 22-Jun-16 02:45:14

Have a look at Windmill primary school in Headington - good school and not too far from the Churchill

CopingWithChange Wed 22-Jun-16 03:54:41

Thanks Blondie. Do you have any idea about secondary for that area - is it Cherwell?

bushtailadventures Wed 22-Jun-16 04:05:18

Kidlington is a nice area for families,with 4 primary schools, although they all feed into one secondary. There is also a bus that goes to the hospitals, so from Kidlington to the John Radcliffe, then on to the Churchill if commuting by car would be a problem.

In terms of rental, Headington is probably a good place to look, close to the hospital, with some good schools. Cheney is the state secondary, Cherwell is in Summertown, although there are a few independents about too.

CopingWithChange Wed 22-Jun-16 07:32:46

Thanks for help - and kind comments, I do appreciate these are first world problems to have as at the very least he will have a job. Just bumping this for the UK wake up.... Cheney and Cherwell seem to be quite different! Anyone have any experience of Cheney? House prices are scary.

Blondie1984 Wed 22-Jun-16 23:47:11

Sorry OP can't help on secondary schools.....

Something worth having a think about is if you DH is willing to have a bit of a commute to work - and if so, what sort of distance/time
If he didn't mind having a bit of a drive then have a look at areas like Abingdon, Banbury and Thame

CopingWithChange Thu 23-Jun-16 00:33:09

Thank you again. Kidlington looks a bit closer than the others transport links wise. Someone mentioned that the south side of the city is the slowest part of the ring road... A driving commute would also be a change, he'd much rather do public transport if he can, so maybe south is harder for that. Don't know much about Banbury though.

Waitingforsomething hope that Singapore is fun and good luck with the move back. Summertown looks lovely but the house prices there are beyond insane!

ocdopus Thu 23-Jun-16 01:01:21

I went to Cheney! Too many years ago to be of any use whatsoever

From what I remember, Oxford is fairly small (in comparison to London or Manchester etc) so you could live in cowley, north Oxford, etc and probably still get to work in 20 mins or so

It's cycle heaven - literally bikes everywhere. Another option for the commute

It's a very interesting pretty place and only 1hr30 ish by coach to London or less by train

House prices are likely less in yarnton or Whitney or carsington) further out but plenty of people commute in and buses run frequently

I'd avoid living in Blackbird Leys, Rose Hill or Barton if you can help it (that was where you avoided when I was there, could have changed of course)

Pythonesque Thu 23-Jun-16 01:23:46

Secondary places are starting to get squeezed in Oxford - near us developed a bit of a hole for this year's entries where normally they'd have all gone to Cherwell, suddenly they didn't get sent to Cheney either but had odd places elsewhere. The flip side is that a broader range of children have gone to Cheney in the last couple of years and from what I hear that is starting to be a real positive there.

Kidlington and environs are probably on an up as there is a new train station recently opened on that side of Oxford (Oxford Parkway - linking into Marylebone I think). There's quite a lot of roadwork going on at the moment affecting various parts of the ring road mainly north side. I think it's due to be finished later this year or early next? Further works are in the offing to improve "access to Headington" - not sure of latest plans since the attempted consultation some months back did lead to some rethinking when residents pointed out all the likely problems the first versions were going to create ...

If you end up within the ring road then plan on cycling to the Churchill if you can. Might be quite do-able from Sandhills as well.

Oxford is a wonderful place to live I think, you can be close to town and country at the same time, getting into London is straightforward (we went to a concert last night for example).

Hope things work out. Feel free to PM me if you like.

CopingWithChange Thu 23-Jun-16 10:13:39

Thank you - and for some flagged areas ocdopus Blackbird Leys rings a bell but presumably not for good reason!

pythonesque thank you, that's useful to know, if depressing that we'll have to start checking furthest acceptances and trying for a margin of error...! Do secondary schools operate sibling priorities like most primaries?

Interesting to hear they've listened to feedback on road deveopments. That's a first in my experience! DH would def be up for cycling too. Thanks for the offer of a PM, might take you up on that if things crystallize a bit further. Sounds like we should look at Kidlington - anyone got any idea on the schools there relative to each other?

bushtailadventures Thu 23-Jun-16 20:55:56

There are 4 primary schools in Kidlington, West Kidlington (soon to be an Academy), North Kidlington, Edward Field, and St Thomas Moore(catholic). I think they are all pretty good, although I have a bias towards West because my DC went there, and DGD will go there, hopefully.

The secondary school is Gosford Hill, which take pupils from Kidlington and surrounding villages. If Gosford doesn't appeal, you can send them to Marlborough in Woodstock, there is a school bus although it is privately run and you pay for it per term. 3 of my DC went to Gosford, DD went to Marlborough because she had additional needs that they were better equipped for at the time.

I wish I could help more, but my DC haven't been in the school system for a long time.

CopingWithChange Fri 24-Jun-16 14:31:22

Thanks bushtail that's really helpful.

I really appreciate all the advice here. I am now more accepting, although I can't seem to help crying a bit whenever I talk to someone (my mum!) about it.... No disrespect to all you Oxford folk, I'm sure it's lovely, just not my home <sob>.

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