10 reasons to live in Shropshire
The epitome of a perfect setting for country living, Shropshire is one of England's prized rural counties and has much to offer families. Clean air and open spaces galore are only a stone's throw from the bustle of rural towns and villages. Our Local editor Kirsty tells us more about why she has chosen Shropshire for life...
1. Thing about the area
Shropshire is Britain's biggest inland county covering 3,490km, and within that huge space there is so much diversity.
We have beautiful countryside, bustling towns and villages, a World Heritage Site and fantastic open spaces. There is also loads to do. It's rural and uncrowded, yet you are never too far away from civilisation.
"Country living with bright 'city' lights not too far away." Thingsgobumpinthenight
"Uncrowded, friendly, lots to see and do, not far from anywhere. Just don't tell anyone!" Specialsubject
2. Child-friendly café
If you are out in Shrewsbury, Eat Up on Milk Street is a great place to go with kids. Also worth a mention is M&S Café Revive in both Shrewsbury and Telford. Both have really friendly and helpful staff, and good changing facilities.
Percy Throwers Garden Centre has everything from chickens to toys for sale and a little café that my kids love. Bug and Boo in Market Drayton is child-friendly with lots to play with.
If you are after Sunday lunch, Loch Fyne and The Armoury, both in Shrewsbury, welcome children.
"Eat Up in Shrewsbury is very baby/toddler/child friendly." Rexymemopey
"The Armoury is spacious, with pushchairs and highchairs available. I love their menu." YouStayClassySanDiego
3. Child-free night out
Why not try Theatre Severn for an evening's entertainment? There are always plenty of shows to choose from at this state-of-the-art venue.
If you're staying in town, a curry from Café Saffron would round off the evening nicely.
If you are looking for a cosy meal à deux, try the roaring fires of The New Inn at Baschurch or The Riverside Inn in Cound.
"A good night out with no DCs would involve Franks, The Silverton and a curry at Cafe Saffron." YouStayClassySanDiego
4. Outside space
In an area like Shropshire there are so many to choose from. The National Trust's Attingham Park has wide-open spaces, which are perfect for letting off steam. It also has a huge play area and lots of holiday activities.
Other places that are great for stretching the legs are Stiperstones, Cardingmill Valley, Haughmond Hill and Nescliffe Country Park.
"Weston Park. Any one of the many, many public footpaths that lead to beautiful secret places." QueenofallIsee
5. Hidden gem
Hawkstone Park is a beautiful place, with amazing follies. Battlefield's Farm Shop Café and Visitor Centre is lovely; you can get a bit of history, fresh fruit, veg, meat and a great piece of cake all in one place.
Theatre Severn also gets a vote from Silverten who says "Lovely people, nice coffee, gorgeous toilets and plenty of space for prams"
"Hawkestone Park is fab and their Christmas activities at the Folly are brilliant!" YouStayClassySanDiego
6. Community venues
Average semi-detached house price
Average class size for primary schools
UK: 25.9 pupils
Any Sure Start venue deserves a mention: fantastic facilities, lots of lovely toys, an activity and a healthy snack. The perfect way to spend a morning with a toddler.
7. Free visitor attractions
Why not visit a World Heritage Site and go and see the iconic Ironbridge? It's an amazing piece of history nestled in the Ironbridge Gorge.
Wander down to the Teddy Bear Shop and Museu, which is home to the Merrythought teddy bear. (I have a soft spot for this place as my great granny ran a grocer's shop in the building during the 1960s.)
There is also Telford Town Park, which is home to the biggest and best playground I've ever seen. RAF Cosford Museum at Shifnal is devoted to aeroplanes and houses some fascinating exhibits, great for the whole family.
"I like Ironbridge. A little gem for Sunday lunch is the Tontine pub, opposite the bridge. They do an amazing carvery." TotallyAddictedToLurking
8. Days out
Blists Hill Victorian Town is a must-do day out where you can experience life as the Victorians did.
Park Hall Farm over at Oswestry or Acton Scott Working Farm in the south of the county are both good days out, too. And a trip to Ellesmere, whether for a long walk beside the mere or just to feed the ducks, is lovely too.
"Acton Scott farm is really good. If you buy a season ticket, it's the sort of thing that fills the odd Sunday really well and there is always something different happening." Silverten
9. Places to live
This is a tricky one as there are loads of lovely places to live in Shropshire. We've got chocolate box villages, such as Much Wenlock, dotted around the county, or smart contemporary town houses in some of the newer developments, such as Lawley Village.
10. Places to shop
For a mix of high street and independent shops try Shrewsbury or Ludlow.
Telford Shopping Centre is all under cover and is home to big high street retailers.
About the editor
My name is Kirsty and I am mum to three children, aged 16, 10 and four. I was born and bred in Shropshire and have lived here all my life apart from a three-year sabbatical at university. I love our county and wouldn't want to live anywhere else.
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