Advice - Moving to Cumbria.(22 Posts)
My family and I may be moving to Cumbria this summer. I would be training to be a primary school teacher and my other half would be continuing his degree (we're both mature students). We have a 10 year old and a 1 year old. My university would be in Lancaster and my partner's would be in Carlisle, so we were thinking of finding a house somewhere in the middle, maybe Penrith? We would like semi-rural. Does anyone have any advice about the Penrith or surrounding areas? Thanks for your help :-)
Hey, Shap is a small market town in the middle of Lancaster and Carlisle, with good transport links. It may be worth having a look around all the villages / areas on the main A roads and M6 from both Uni's to get an idea of areas and commute times.
Shap is semi rural, but has a couple of pubs, a primary school, shop etc...oh and an outdoor pool.
If you don't know any areas, I would recommend staying for a few nights in places to explore, that's what we did and found is useful to get a better flavour of areas.
Have lots of fun exploring!
Penrith a is a lovely town. Don't know it to live there , used to go for work and often have a day out there. Iirc secondary school is good.
If you're looking for in the middle you may want to go further south as it'll take longer to get into Lancaster than Carlisle (assuming you're at St Martins rather than Lancaster Uni)
Are you both going to be attending University of Cumbria but one in Lancaster and one in Carlisle by any chance?
I think giving you both a long commute is a bad idea, which in Penrith is an expensive commute for both each way.
I personally would suggest you choose either Lancaster or Carlisle so only one of you has to commute. There are very regular direct trains between the two cities and both are very rural round the edges.
If that really isn't for you I would suggest Kendal which is 30 mins away from Lancaster driving or 13 mins on the train from Oxenholme.
Carlisle is a 1 hr drive or 37 minute journey on the train. There will be lots of students doing the Kendal to Lancaster journey in the morning both via train and driving.
Kendal has a really good choice of good schools both primary and secondary.
Good advice Hatgirl! Kendal is a great place to live with fantastic transport links
I think Hatgirl makes a good point about the costs and long travel, Kendal is nice with good surrounding areas. I live near Penrith which also has some nice villages around but that would add to any commute. Kendal, Lancaster and Carlisle will have more amenities and activities for families than Penrith. It's an OK little town but doesn't have much of what families need.
If you don't want to drive then train is your best bet as the county council have just cut the subsidies for a lot of bus journeys so they have been reduced or cut altogether.
Good luck with the move and welcome to Cumbria!
From a practical point of view 'living in the middle' in a place like Cumbria isn't like living in the middle would be like in an urban area that has good transport links and amenities and generally good weather.
And check where your placements will be , Lancashire or Cumbria as you could end up travelling further
I agree with Hatgirl- living in Penrith and both of you commuting sounds like a nightmare!
Thanks for all the advice. Thinking on it further we agree that, especially with kids, it might be best to live near either one or the other.
If we chose the Carlisle area, what semi-rural locations are nicest? We have seen some nice houses in Brampton. Does anyone know what this area is like to live in?
Again it depends on what kind of transport you have and how often you are needing to commute.
Brampton is nice enough and so are pretty much all of the the villages/towns around Carlisle.
Can I ask where (roughly) you are moving from and why you have chosen Cumbria - I'm trying to get an understanding of if you already live semi rurally and want to replicate that somewhere new or if this is a 'wish list' requirement and will be a new experience for you. Its not a problem either way but might help us pinpoint a good location for you.
My DH and I moved up to a tiny village near Penrith 2 years ago before settling in Appleby. It really is a beautiful part of the country and having Keswick, Ullswater etc. on the doorstep is fantastic, but as others have said there isn't really much on in Penrith, and the further out into the villages you go, the longer you will be commuting (not to mention the rural roads being VERY rural in some areas).
Would it be viable for you to study in Carlisle too? If you were going to UoC in Lancaster the Fusehill campus in Carlisle runs the same course and would make commuting much easier.
I'd look for villages with good access to the M6 or surrounding A roads- our main reason for moving from our village was at the first sign of bad weather we would be stranded. A 20 minute drive into Penrith took at least an hour and we were on first name terms with the AA man after flooding a car and getting the other one stuck in the snow!
Weather is a good point actually, Penrith up get worse weather than Kendal etc so plan how you will work if you can't get in
Thanks for all the comments :-)
hatgirl: We currently live in a small seaside town in the South East of England. The area has suffered from a huge influx of people moving out of London in recent years, meaning the house prices have become stupidly high, schools are all over-subscribed and crime/antisocial behaviour is becoming a big problem. We are wanting a more rural way of life and a country house would be so beneficial in the respect of space for the kids and an outbuilding to use as a studio (both myself and my partner are artists). We are hoping to both have a car to be able to get out and about. We are not the kind of people that go out a lot in the evenings or need a lot of nightlife etc.. We are happy to spend time as a family, go on nature walks, do arts and crafts, photography, baking, playing music, have movie nights at home. We would also like to have the opportunity to take part in more outdoor pursuits such as canoeing, rock climbing, horse riding etc.. My partner grew up in a rural village and wants our children to be able to experience that way of life too.
annatha: Unfortunately Lancaster is the only campus that runs the specific PGCE course I want to study. Saying that, I would only actually be attending the university for about 20% of the 1 year course as the rest of the time I will be on placement in schools, which I'm lead to believe are allocated as much as possible by locality to your home. Could I ask where you moved to the Penrith area from?
We take onboard the concerns regarding weather and transport issues. So with this in mind we agree that we should look for villages near Carlisle with good access.
Could I ask if anyone has any recommendations for a secondary school for my daughter? Are there any to avoid?
We moved from Sheffield. We both went to university in Cumbria (Carlisle campus for me, Penrith's Newton Rigg campus for my DH). After uni we moved back home but missed life up here so much that we moved back a year later. My DD is ten weeks and I couldn't think of a better place to bring her up.
You should be fine placement wise if you live anywhere around Carlisle, Penrith and beyond- when I was training as a primary school teacher we were expected to commute up to an hour and a half to get to our placement schools because of all the village schools, but we could also request placements in the Lancaster catchment area so I'm sure it will work the other way around.
If you are looking at Carlisle then secondary schools may be a concern - primaries will be fine I think. The secondaries have had a few problems in recent years but I think the best one is Trinity. I have no direct experience of Carlisle secondaries so this is just from what I have read or heard. Richard Rose Academy was in special measures last year but may be out now. I think South Lakes schools are better, Penrith has two secondaries (numerous primaries and in most villages) one of which is a selective Grammar.
Pretty much anywhere is Cumbria is good for rural living. My own concern, after being here 10 years, is now that my children are getting older there isn't a great deal for them to do close by and it can be difficult to get anywhere in the evening if you rely on public transport. But we are 7 miles out of Penrith and 30 miles from Carlisle.
Hi Eshva, are you any closer to deciding if you will be moving to Cumbria?
No disrespect to Shap but its weather can be notoriously hardcore in the winter.
I'm very new to this site, i've known about it for years but just never got round till my lovely hubby suggested the forum.
We are about to make a massive move in our lives. We currently reside in Manchester, however we are wanting to move to Cumbria for a better lifestyle for ourselves. We have an 11 year old son with special needs and a worry for me is what provisions are available for him? Can anyone tell us about James Rennie School in Carlisle or Sandgate school in kendale? any parents out there who have children in either of those schools and also what activities are available for children with special needs?
I hope this isn't too much to ask, we would like to prepare ourselves as much as he's going to need a smooth transition to secondary school in September.
Thank you all
Hi dupssylala . You might be better off starting your own thread rather than just adding a post to this one. The Cumbria local MN board doesn't get a lot of traffic. If you start a thread on the education board or on chat and put the school names in the thread title you might be more likely to get responses.
Sorry I can't be more help! We moved to the area a couple of years ago and love it here. I'm a teacher and live near Kendal, but I don't know anything about the schools ypu mentioned, I'm afraid. Good luck!
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