Where to live in Cumbria(16 Posts)
Hi it’s looking like we will be moving to Cumbria from Scotland in the next year. My DC are 8 & 5. Looking for advice on where to live please. Was looking at Penrith & Cockermouth. We would obviously want an area with good schools (from what I’ve read don’t think there are bad schools as such). I’ve read lots about flooding in certain areas which worries me. At the moment I have a really good support network of friends who we all help out each other with childcare and live on a street where it’s relatively safe for kids to be out playing so I’m a bit stressed at the thought of starting from scratch. Is there any areas less/more friendly than others??? Thank you
Hi! Didn't want your post to go unanswered! I don't know Penrith well, but have heard good things about it. Cockermouth itself is quite nice, but the area around it... not so much.
We moved to Cumbria from Oxfordshire 3 years ago. We are just south of Kendal. It's a lovely area - nice villages and stunning countryside. Good schools and friendly locals. Are you tied to Penrith or Cockermouth or are you looking at other parts of Cumbria?
Thank you for answering. No not tied to any area. I suppose I was thinking as our family & friends will still be in Scotland we’d want to stay where there’s easy access to M6 but now I’ve looked at map properly I see there are a few places. That’s good to know I’ll look around Kendal too.
I find Kendal areas are welcoming as so many people have moved here from other areas. In fact, the majority of people I know aren't from Kendal originally. It's a really good mix of people. Good schools and motorway access too.
Once you have narrowed down where you might want to live, have a look at properties on rightmove. You can click 'school checker' on properties you may like and it will give you the ofsted ratings etc. You'll easily meet people through your children's schools/activities.
I don't really know Penrith or Cockermouth area's too well. But, I imagine Cockermouth could be fairly cliquey.
We moved to Kendal from the Midlands five years ago. We absolutely love it. You're right about schools. There are no 'bad' schools here in the South Lakes area really, and most are under-subscribed so you get much more choice locally than you would in most areas of England (I think it's different to Scotland?)
I think secondary options are more limited around Penrith and Cockermouth, but not sure about primary.
With regards to flooding, just make sure you ask the estate agents. Give aways are phrases like 'downstairs recently renovated'.
Good luck! It's a great place to live :-)
The people in Cockermouth can be really friendly and pleasant and it’s a beautiful little town. Very special. However the rest of West Cumbria can be very insular and a lot of it is quite ugly, in spite of its proximity to the Lake District. Penrith is quite nice and as it’s bang smack in the centre of the county has good transport links back home to Scotland, West Coast Main Line and the M6. South Lakes is the beautiful part and Kendal is very nice. The west coast isn’t pretty and it’s miles from anywhere as the mountains are between it and the rest of the country. The centre gets absolutely rammed with tourists and the roads are choked but Ambleside, Windermere, Coniston, Grasmere etc, all the bits you’ve heard of, are achingly beautiful. No idea about schools, but if there’s a Booths supermarket nearby it’s a good area
Hello! I've lived in Cockermouth, Kendal, Ambleside and Keswick, but since I've had kids I've been in Carlisle. I love Cockermouth and the villages around it, but getting back over to the M6 to get anywhere is a bit of a pain! And when there is flooding, which there will be, even if you are not directly affected, getting around, local services etc might be.
Penrith always seems a bit insular, but some of the villages are great and have loads going on. Worked here on and off for a long time but rarely venture into the town.
I would pick kendal every time though - if I could afford it! Lovely town, easily accessible and lots to do - great place for kids to grow up.
I lived in Cockermouth up to a few years ago and die say it is a great town to bring up children, lots going on,open countryside nearby and good schools. Obviously when looking at areas to live and if worried about flooding just keep away from the river. There are a good few estates that are up on the hills and have never flooded. Sainsbury is one of the two (at the moment ) supermarkets and as that is at the top of Station Street it has never flooded. There is a Aldi also and a Lidl in the pipeline. Lots of other independent shops as well. If you haven't already
book a night or two and come and have a look.
I don't think you wrong with Cockermouth or Penrith -
Cockermouth is 40 minutes from the M6 - just don't go for the low lying houses. i believe the secondary school is good and i think most the primary schools are too. you've got a sainsburys and aldi in the town with Morrissions and Tescos in Whitehaven or Booths in Keswick
Penrith - some of the outlying villages like Kirkby Thore are very cheap but few services, again the schools in Penrith are good with a grammar school and community college, you've also got appleby near by with a grammar - supermarkets in penrith you've got sainsburys, booths and Morrisons with bigger verisions in Carlisle.
You could also look at Appleby, Kirkby Stephen, Kendal - but much bigger. or further south Ulverston, Grange-over-Sands.
plenty of choice lots will depend on your budget housing wise
Given a choice I'd go for Kendal, it's easy to get onto the M6. Easy to reach most places from, good schools and has a hospital and Lancaster a twenty minute drive down the motorway. Plus you're on the door step to the lakes, which will give you plenty of scope for exploring.
Penrith is lovely imo. A proper town, not a tourist trap. Kendal is lovely but obviously more touristy.
Cockermouth is highly recommended for a place you live, especially if you have kids. The Fells are nearby. Schools are amazing. Great community. Been here 15 years.
Kendal has everything you need, a good range of property prices and the lakes and fells are easily reached.
Mainline trains at Oxenholme and easy access to the M6 are a bonus as well.
Big artistic community if that floats your boat. Just be sure to check with the estate agents about flood areas anywhere in this region now.
Thanks for all the advice. My husband has recently found out he’ll mostly be working in Cleator Moor. He’d be happy to do up to an hour commute but according to google map Kendal is further away than an hour??
I live in Carlisle and love it. Ive lived all over and this is my favourite place by far. People are really friendly and you can make good friends easily. It has good jobs, house prices, shopping and loads for the kids to do.it also has great transport links to Scotland, Newcastle etc as well as the lake district. There are so many nice little villages on the outskirts too.
Good luck in finding the best place for you and the family
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