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Oxfordshire Prep Schools and relocation to the area

(6 Posts)
marchblossom Mon 30-Dec-13 22:05:11

Can any experts of Oxfordshire villages/towns and independent schools within this area help me make relocation decision please? We currently live in Kent and both DDs go to a lovely prep school where they are doing well. However, our move to Kent originally was only temporary and we have always wanted to make the move back to Oxfordshire - when we could afford to ! My family are there, which is our main concern as we rarely get to see them where we are now and also the outstanding independent schools for my girls. I am ideally hoping to find my dream job in Oxford before we commit to the move but am trying to plan ahead.

DH needs to commute to London for work, can anyone recommend any villages/towns we should consider for both good schools and the commute? We are currently thinking the Didcot/Abingdon area and The Manor Prep/St. Helens St. Katharines, any recommendations for charming villages in this area? Radical new suggestions for other commutable areas and/or excellent prep/girls schools very welcome!!

1805 Mon 30-Dec-13 22:30:59

Are you looking at academic schools then? I would advise AGAINST The Manor unless you have a top-set, sporty girl. If you do, then the Manor is great. It's just not particulary inclusive, and you tend to see the same groups of girls doing everything. Other schools to look at are Headington, and Our Ladys which is co-ed now.

Villages - I'd go for Steventon, The Moretons (North and South), The Hanneys (East and West), Upton, West Hagbourne, Blewbury, Long Whittenham,

I presume dh will commute by train from Didcot?

If you wanted to head a bit further south, then St Andrews in Pangbourne is very good too. Probably too far south for you though. Lovely villages around there too.

DH uses the train from Thame & Haddenham, which is west of oxford, but he says that train line is very good. Also the M40 bus is an option from Wheatley and Thame area. From here you can hit Oxford High School and Headington, Dragon Prep, St Edwards (Senior) Schools.


marchblossom Mon 30-Dec-13 22:45:50

Thank you for the village suggestions! Yes DD1 very sporty and incredibly academic (though happy and settled, she is currently unforgivably under-challenged) DD2 is only just starting nursery so not sure yet where she will fit.

Would LOVE to send DDs to Headington and am still considering it, just the central location, property prices and traffic/parking putting me off at the mo! Would love a quiet village location.

Oh I love Pangbourne and hadn't considered it, will definitely check that one out, thank you. Have also considered Thame & Haddenham station - what are the surrounding villages like? Any stand out charmers? I only really know Wheatley, which is incredibly busy and built up now sad

Thanks again smile

1805 Mon 30-Dec-13 23:30:20

Extensive school buses to Headington and Oxford High from most places I think. I only know the villages between Wheatley and Thame, and they are all nice. Just watch for noise from the M'Way though. Further across in that direction is Long Crendon. (Prob too far though).

DH keeps going on about Haddenham itself, but personally I don't know it.

DD1 sounds like a perfect Manor Girl to me! PM me if you would like more info on that school.

Around Wheatley are The Miltons, Hasleys, Cuddesdon, Horspath, Garsington, The Baldons……….

CharlesRyder Tue 31-Dec-13 09:17:17

Godstowe/ Wycombe Abbey and live in Medmenham or Hurley?

Pricey options though.

BensonBunny Thu 02-Jan-14 00:48:35

St Helen's has an extensive bus network (shared with The Manor and Abingdon) so if you are interested in the school you could look at their website to get ideas of areas served. My DD is there and I would say the only downside to the school is that her friends don't live near us, however that problem is common to all the Oxfordshire independents.

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