I know there are a tons of posts regarding moving to the area, sorry to put another one up!! My family and I are thinking of moving to the Oxford area. We have two kids, a 4 1/2 year old and 2 1/2 year old boy. We have a decent budget, but nothing that can get us one of those huge houses in North Oxford! We are looking for a substantial sized house and garden (we have a HUGE dog), so we have been given the suggestions of Headington, Iffley, and are looking at a house in Kennington. There are a couple of issues. Of course, first, is budget. Secondly, schools. The older one just got into a great reception here in London, and we will have to do an in year application if we move up there. I am nervous about this, wondering where he would get into - if it would be far away, will it be good enough, etc etc. I don't know if I need to look at houses in catchment areas, since we will be doing in year. But I think I read on the council site that a closer address does still have an affect with in year transfers. Also, I supposed I should think about the littlest one as well? That's then the 3rd issue: nurseries for the little one.
So, if you guys could give me suggestions for areas, on comments on the ones mentioned above, as well as schools, that would be fabulous!!!
Thank you so much!
I am currently doing in year transfers for my 5 year old twins and 8 year old, and am finding it rather tricky. For example Windmill Primary in Headington (which people are raving about) told me there were no places available at the moment for september for the years I am looking at, but places could become available. New Marston Primary which has a good ofsted report seems not to be popular but I don't know why. If anyone can shed light on that?!
I was told by Oxford CC admissions that they processed 2,400 in year admissions last summer (2014). So there is a lot of demand, and I think it would definitely help to be in the right catchment area. And once you get your first child in to a school, that will help for the second child.
As for areas, there are a couple of recent posts on moving to Headington. I would also be interested to know what Kennington is like to live in, as you definitely get bigger gardens up there.
Hope this helps a bit.
Thanks for the note, bootsncats! The problem with the Kennington house, as well as one on Hinksey Hill, is that they don't necessarily lie in any catchment areas! So what happens then is my question? I was going to call the council, but figured that I should go and look at houses and areas first, and see which I like more, before bother them too much. The house we're looking at in Headington is actually right next to Windmill Primary. Where are you living?
Oxford is notoriously expensive. I did the move from London to Oxfordshier a couple of years ago, expecting to get a bigger house and garden ... but prices are not far off London. I would suggest looking at villages on the outskirts of Oxford if a bigger house and garden are what you need as prices will be high in central Oxford. There are quite a few villages with outstandingand very good primaries in oxfordshire... I think Enstone, Longworth, Stanton Harcourt, one in Bicester ? Chesterton to name a few. nurseries usually have quite a long waiting list, especially those in central Oxford so try to put your name on the waiting list early.
Hope that helps!
Anna (Local Ed)
Thanks, Oxfordlocaleditor! I did realise that when I started to look for houses! That's why Headington looks nice, seems like you can get a bit more for your money. Also, Cumnor Hill and those places. But Cumnor Hill didn't seem to have any kind of cute community feeling about it, which we are looking for. I think you're right. It's either grin and bear the not huge size of a house, or go out to a smaller village. But, if it's going to a smaller village, I might as well do that around here (Richmond). Do you know anything about Kennington or Hinksey Hill? We do have a good budget, but not nothing like 2 million.
I have to ask why you are moving to Oxford if you don't have job reasons?
You could get more for your money in a lot of other places, and places with a much better commute to London. Oxford is very much hemmed in with its green belt and flood plains. (Oh and lack of high rise.)
Hi there, Bekabeech. We are just researching options of places to raise the kids. Have some friends in Oxford and have always loved it. Also thinking of places like the villages outside of Guildford, Brighton, etc. Trying to figure our lives out!!! We saw the Kennington house today - no good. The area just didn't have any kind of feel to it. HEadington was too busy and the hosue was on a main rd. The Hinksey Hill house was GORGEOUS, but right on the roundabout. Too bad!!! What other places would you suggest?
Well if you need to get to London: villages near Guildford etc., Brighton/Lewes etc., even nice Essex or Cambridge.
I love Oxford but you don't get much for you money, it can be hard to get your DC into a good school (but if you are going private there are some good ones).
If you didn't need London, I might look further out into the Cotswolds.
Thanks, so much!! You've essentially covered all the bases of what we were looking for, minus Cambridge and Essex. Never thought of them. Or the Cotwolds!!! Shall look into things now, thank you!!
Look up Woodstock and the surrounding villages. Woodstock has an excellent primary school, good amenities and a nice community feel. Expensive but not as bad as north Oxford. I also love Charlbury in the Cotswolds - also good amenities and cheaper than Woodstock. Both are small towns rather than tiny villages.
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