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Oxfordshire Advice Please!(6 Posts)
Hello! We are potentially moving to Oxfordshire soon and have a 3 yo. We are renters, with a budget of around £1500 pcm. I know nothing of the area, but will be working in Headington. Where is good for families to live, please? Would love to live somewhere quiet but with plenty of kid-friendly amenities (no nightlife or students!) Which primary schools are the best? I've heard Summertown and Jericho are nice, but think they are prohibitively expensive, as we'd want a 3-bed. I'm dependent on public transport so need good bus links to Headington. Any advice about whether to avoid the place altogether welcome too, as I haven't decided yet! We currently live in Brighton which we love so much, but there's no work here....
Have you considered living in Headington? It's fantastic for families and not very studenty (students prefer the Cowley Road / East Oxford area where all the restaurants and bars are). It's not cheap but much less expensive than Summertown or Jericho. Great parks, great primary schools.
Thank you so much for replying, Oxfordbumble - that's certainly looking like the most promising area for us! Had a brief look around, and certainly the houses near South Park and the back of Brookes look lovely. I see the Windmill school as highly rated, but Ofsted isn't everything. Do you have particular recommendations for Schools around there, or particular streets/areas we should aim for? It would certainly help me to feel more confident about uprooting if I had some local advice!
We are at Windmill and are very happy with it so far. The school has a great atmosphere and good community, the head is very hands on and approachable, and the teachers we have had have been very good. It is a very big school (3 form entry) but the head knows every child's name and it still feels quite intimate despite the size - the advantage of being bigger is that it means there are more clubs and activities available.
The area of Windmill catchment is also nice because you are close to the Headington shops, also Bury Knowle Park (plus there are several other smaller parks and natural areas around), and the bus into central Oxford. We are in New Headington (the area south of London Road), which is pretty convenient. Windmill catchment also includes Headington Quarry which has tons of character but is a bit further from amenities and closer to the ring road so more traffic noise.
I have also heard very positive things about St Andrew's school. However, the catchment is Old Headington, north of London Road, and the houses are more expensive there. St Andrews is a tiny intake (1 form) so getting in is a bit more of a gamble even if you are in catchment but on the edge. But if you have a preference for a smaller school and something in budget comes up in that area, it's worth thinking about. Old Headington is lovely.
Do shout if you have any more questions!
Brilliant - thanks so much, Oxfordmumble! This kind of info is invaluable, and I'm so grateful to chat with another mum in that area.