From West End to where??

(22 Posts)
harecare Wed 23-Feb-11 19:57:30

Hello, I've been living in the West End of Newcastle for as long as I've lived in Newcastle - about 16 years. Now that DD1 is 3 I want to move away. We live in a lovely house in a lovely cul de sac, but outside of our cul de sac I wouldn't be happy to let either of my DDs walk alone at night once they were old enough. We have great friends locally, but I grew up in a small village and just don't feel like this is where I want to bring my children up.
We've already put down her school choices for joining reception in September, but are planning on renting out our house and moving somewhere nicer.
I'd like to move to the coast, but DP wants within about 4/5 miles of town. I've thought about Whickam, Heaton, and am thinking South Gosforth might be the best place.
I love South Gosforth and Archbishop Runcie schools, but they are overly subscribed. We won't be able to move until 1st August/July and can't prove we're going to move so it won't affect our admission chances. I don't want to move to South Gosforth and then find we have to travel far away to school.
So what do I do?
Is there a lovely area - by lovely I mean trees and fields rather than concrete and car washes, that has a good school that transfers to a good secondary/high that won't be so oversubscribed?
Or do any of you know of a house to rent within the catchment area of a good school that is available from 1st August/July?

5inthebed Wed 23-Feb-11 20:04:18

There are a few good schools in and around Gosforth. Most of the schools are three tier, so you get first, junior and high schools.

Archibold, Regent Farm and Grange First school are all nice schools. My DS' go to one of those and we lived out of the catchment area when we applied for the place for DS1.

Surrounding areas you could think about, Kenton, Coxlodge, Red House Farm.

harecare Wed 23-Feb-11 20:09:50

But aren't all of those equally oversubscribed? How far out of the catchment area were you? Unless I can get a letter from a landlord stating that I will be moving to a certain address, then they'll decide who to give a space at those schools based on the distance I currently live away.

5inthebed Wed 23-Feb-11 20:17:18

Not that I'm aware of. I had no problems getting DS1 in and I lived in Fenham.

hairtwiddler Wed 23-Feb-11 20:18:07

Cragside is a fantastic school. Oversubscribed last year but if living close not an issue. Paddy Freeman Park nearby and some lovely tree lined streets...

harecare Wed 23-Feb-11 21:07:37

What about Westmoor?

5inthebed Wed 23-Feb-11 21:32:52

Where is Westmoor confused. Is that the new housing estate by Wideopen?

harecare Thu 24-Feb-11 11:16:31

No, it's near Killingworth. There's a great school and it looks a bit villagey over the web, but does anyone know it well?
As the crow flies Fenham is much closer to the Gosforth schools than Benwell unfortunately, so I don't fancy my chances of changing my choices without changing my address.

DamselInDisguise Thu 24-Feb-11 11:31:47

The first schools that feed to gosforth junior high academy as it's now called are not as generally oversubscribed as those that feed to the other 2 middle schools, and I think they're all good schools. The junior high is great, and that then transfers to gosforth academy. They all work on a feeder system, so you get priority when it comes time to transfer between schools. I think the primary schools that feed to heaton manor (like cragside) are good too.

You should be able to get a place at any school with places left so long as you have an address in Newcastle. Phone up the school admissions people and have a chat. Most schools will tell you if they're full for a particular year group too.

harecare Thu 24-Feb-11 14:25:14

Thanks Damsel, I've got friends with kids at Gosforth Junior High so that might be a good idea.

cliveceltic Sun 27-Feb-11 21:30:18

Just an idea but Cramlington (Northumberland) High has a great reputation and if you get to the right end of Cramlington then you can get a decent primary school, alhough all are decent and all feed to the one high school.

Downsides are that you are out of the tyne and wear transport system so buses and taxis are a bit dearer and you aen't accessible to a metro like you would be in town.

Plus sides are that the whole of Cramlington is accessible by cycle track, quick drive to the new beach area at Blyth which is lovely and then up or down the coast to various lovely places. All very suburbian and kids just seem to always play out.

People who look at Cramlington also look at Kingston Park but no idea about the schools there and its more city like.

BlueandPink Mon 28-Feb-11 12:03:47

I seriously doubt that anybody not living in Gosforth would actually get in those schools nowadays, there are so many children living here it is unbelievable! Why can't you move sooner than August? I assume you are looking for an unfurnished house, they are nightmare to find. I suggest trying to find a 3 bed flat.

Sorry to sound like a total snob, but I wouldn't ever consider Kenton, Coxlodge and Red House Farm if you don't like living in West End. I explained my reasons why I love living in Gosforth in another thread so not going to list them now, but if I wouldn't be able to live here, the second option would be definitely Heaton. I have heard good things about Hotspur and last time I cheched Chillingham Road seems to get good results. They go to Heaton Manor secondary school, as do children from West Jesmond primary.

CBear6 Thu 03-Mar-11 23:06:22

I agree that Cramlington is lovely and has good schools, as are the areas around there. Lots of open spaces and green fields, several good schools to choose from that aren't over-subscribed, and it's a good place for kids. It's busy enough that you're not bored, quiet enough that it's peaceful, and close enough to Newcastle so you don't feel cut off but far enough away that you don't have any of the bother. I moved over this way from the West End and would never move back. There's Cramlington, Seghill (which is inside Tyne and Wear), Annitsford (also in Tyne and Wear), Dudley, Seaton Delaval, Seaton Sluice, New Hartley, Holywell, Earsdon, and even Shiremoor (which has the advantage of being on the Metro route).

harecare Fri 04-Mar-11 23:03:31

Cramlington would be a good choice, but I have to stay within about 5/6 miles of Newcastle for DP to cycle to work. It's also where DP is from and I don't think he'd want to move back.
We can't move immediately as we need to gather together some money and sort our house out. We've only just thought that it might be possible to move - I'm working a bit more and have finally realised that I don't have to stay where we are just because that's where we live currently.

harecare Fri 04-Mar-11 23:07:45

Blue and Pink - Heaton is nice, but I think I want to live somewhere a bit more rural. By the park is great, but it's not just the schools, I want to be somewhere that feels more villagey rather than a suburb of Newcastle.

elliott Fri 04-Mar-11 23:12:28

my top tip for someone in your situation would be hotspur school - you will probably get in from whereever you are, as its generally undersubscribed. You could then take your time about moving - its in heaton so there is plenty of choice around.
I don't think there is a huge issue of oversubscription in most of newcastle tbh - if you got yourself down on a waiting list or several I would imagine you will get in somewhere by the end of september. Cragside, Chillingham road, even west jesmond seems to take people miles out of 'catchment'.
Go and have a look and see what you think.

elliott Fri 04-Mar-11 23:14:35

oh I see you want 'villagey' hmm
Would hardly put Gosforth in that category!
You could go out somewhere like Ryton or Wylam if that isn't too far for your dh. I don't think you get much 'village' within a few miles of the city centre though!

harecare Fri 04-Mar-11 23:27:24

I know Gosforth isn't a village, but there's a lot of greenery around in North Gosforth, Brunton area, I must admit I am mainly basing my thoughts at the moment on satellite view on google maps!
We're going to see properties in Whickam tomorrow, does anybody live there?

BlueandPink Fri 11-Mar-11 11:53:44

Are you dependent on public transport at all? When I checked some of the more villagey areas, such as Annitsford and Backworth, I realised that apart from buses weren't particularly frequent, they weren't buggy-friendly either! And I just read that one bus service from Dinnington has been cancelled.

DamselInDisguise Fri 11-Mar-11 11:59:22

If you're thinking about a house in Brunton Park, beware of flooding and surface water. You definitely want to check this out. Our garden is a swamp all winter and even develops a pond of its own accord. All the gardens on this side of the street flood. It's crap because it renders our, otherwise lovely, toddler-safe, enclosed, garden unusable. I'm told the gardens on the other side of the road don't flood, but it is a common problem on the estate.

TomThumbMum Sat 19-Mar-11 20:34:09

I recently moved from South Gosforth to the coast. South Gosforth is a great place to live, so accessible bus and metro wise and so much greenery around. Its a beautiful place, close but not too close to Gosforth centre. I loved being on the edge of the Dene. South Gosforth is a perfect place to live if you want to be close to town and it only seems to be getting better. I have also lived in Heaton and Cramlington but wouldn't recommend either.

downpipe Thu 14-Jul-11 17:57:40

Hi, I know you posted this ages ago but wondered what you had decided or whether you had found out any more about schools?I'm in the West End too, lovely house and v convenient for the city centre but starting to think not the best place for my kids to grow up and the reports for the local schools are not good at all..What are the chances of getting in to somewhere like Cragside or w Jesmond from here? Wondering whether to move, or at least rent out our house & move to a better area but what are the rules about doing this and applying to schools?

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