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(31 Posts)
ElleBon Mon 16-Jun-14 13:32:12

Hi everyone
just joined mumsnet as have found various blogs and views very helpful. decided to join to get some to the point feedback on the issues that im unsure about.
moving from London to surrey-Virginia water area to live and one of the two independent schools for our 4year old boy (the little one just turning two this week). Cant decide between Lambrook school in winkfield row and Hall Grove near bagshot/sunningdale. have visited both but would really appreciate if anyone had first hand experience with either. have to confirm by end of week with the chosen school.
Also, house wise (renting to start off) -Virginia water SO expensive so have thought of maidenhead but the nice areas are too far from the station -DH has to commute to central London.
Please let mw know your thoughts

beccajoh Mon 16-Jun-14 13:35:04

Are you set on Virginia Water? I live in Walton-on-Thames and when we were looking three years ago you got a bit more for your money here than in Virginia Water. Faster train service as well.

ElleBon Mon 16-Jun-14 14:03:53

Hi beccajoh
thanks for joining the discussion. we are set in a sense that its a nice place, commute is not too long, can rent near the station and most importantly the schools! because of the commute to school-can only really go sunningdale, Virginia water or places like maidenhead. but maidenhead-no nice areas near the station.
Walton-on-thames a lot further out, no? any thoughts on the schools?

CharlesRyder Mon 16-Jun-14 16:58:02

You could live in Bray. It is near enough to M'head station to cycle and Lambrook's school bus stops at the Village Hall.

My DS would have been going into Reception at Lambrook in September were we not relocating to Dorset. It is a very dynamic, vibrant school with an excellent Head.

beccajoh Mon 16-Jun-14 18:38:14

Plenty of private schools round here and the state schools are all pretty good too. My oldest isn't 2 yet so I don't know much about specific schools I'm afraid. The train journey is about 30 mins in the morning rush hour, 25 mins in the evening. I don't think it's further out? It's inside the M25 anyway lol!

ElleBon Mon 16-Jun-14 20:33:27

CharlesRyder so good to hear your DS would have been going to lambrook, really wish she was as looks like my eldest DS going! really clicked with lambrook so much more than hall grove! don't know why just did! I loved it when I went to see it-twice, in fact!
where do you live?
bray-would be perfect, I had very much looked at that-the only problem is apparently a lot of aircraft noise and the lovely areas of it-houses minimum price is 1.8 million!!!!!!!!! so wwould love to but budget would not allow!
beccajoh, not sure we have time to consider other areas as have to commit to one of the schools this week otherwise would loose a place!

beccajoh Mon 16-Jun-14 20:37:39

We looked at Virginia Water too and I fell hopelessly in love with a house there but DH wasn't keen hmm

ElleBon Mon 16-Jun-14 20:37:57

guys, please tell me more re maidenhead-even though about to sign a tenancy on a house in Virginia water. maidenhead-only attraction-crossrail coming-prices will hopefully make some return-so much prefer sunningdale/Virginia water though!!!!!!!!! may be hadn't had a proper tour of maidenhead! loved the riverside coz dream of a life in Richmond (may be one day!!!!) but its too far from the station albeit a lot more affordable that VW! !!!!!!!! or sunningdale for that matter!

ElleBon Mon 16-Jun-14 20:39:53

beccajoh, really don't have ANY opportunity to look at other areas unless commute to lambrook school is going to be possible! so cant consider too far out!

CharlesRyder Mon 16-Jun-14 20:42:10

DH and I did a lot of research but we are currently north of the M4 (Burnham) so Hall Grove didn't actually come onto our radar. We are both senior teachers- DH in senior independent and me in state primary- so we hade a lot of experience to draw on when choosing. Lambrook was the stand out school by a head and shoulders for us.

I think we are in a different price bracket to you re house. Had we been staying we were going to move into a new build on Bracken Park in Bracknell as that is where we could get the most house for our money.

There are some really nice bits of Dorney and Taplow. Taplow will be a Crossrail station in 2017 if that helps.

I would say commit to Lambrook and then house shop around the school bus routes?

CharlesRyder Mon 16-Jun-14 20:49:12

Would either of the Windsor stations be useful for your DH's commute?

Something like this? Great for Lambrook good for Windsor stations.

CharlesRyder Mon 16-Jun-14 20:50:43

Actually that house would be ok for M'head at the right time.

CharlesRyder Mon 16-Jun-14 20:56:31

This is not a beauty from the outside but it is in a lovely location.

There is a very nice playground with a little coffee shack right by it and lovely walks down the river on the doorstep. You could walk to a corner shop and a good Chinese too.

FanSpamTastic Mon 16-Jun-14 21:15:54

Hall grove is a lovely school - I don't know the other one though. DS went to preschool there. Virginia water is quite a way though from that school. The a30 can be very busy in the morning though you can take the back roads through windlesham to get there.

ElleBon Mon 16-Jun-14 22:18:36

CarlesRyder, really really happy re your comments given your and DH's position! you have just totally TOTALLY made our mind up! DH and I were just reading your comments -thanks so much! really excited now-going to confirm with lambrook that we are coming-I am so in love with that school but was worried about the commute! you made the final choice so easy! so when DS is the next prime minister we shall be taking you on an exclusive holiday!!!!!!!
thanks so much on the comments on maidenhead-do you guys know it quite well? really not sure-would love to want to go there as crossrail will put the prices up and its so much cheaper but the nice areas SO far away fron the station!!!!!!!

ElleBon Mon 16-Jun-14 22:21:21

Fanspamtastic, that's my worry re going for lambrook even though im in love with it!!!!!! hall grove-lovely, but didn't quite connect as I did with lambrook! but really worried about the traffic with two little monsters (ie DSs) at the back of the car every morning!!!!!!!!!!

CharlesRyder Tue 17-Jun-14 06:31:00

Agree that if you or DH want to be able to walk to the station Maidenhead is difficult. Some parts of the St Marks area are nice though. Some very attractive Victorian houses up there. The Ray Mill area is good for the 'river living' feel. The houses are generally more modern though.

Realistically you would have to drive, or at least cycle in, to be able to live in a spot with a rural feel.

There are plans in the pipeline to regenerate Maidenhead so with that and crossrail if you can talk yourself into it a house there would probably be a great investment.

ElleBon Tue 17-Jun-14 21:32:55

Your comments so helpful. just been advised today to look at weybridge for the purposes of it being more lively! which, in turn, would mean looking for schools within the next two days as have to commit to lambrook by the end of the week-otherwise will not have a space for sept 2014!
charlesryder, do you think lambrook is worth staying this side of surrey for, ie longer commute from Virginia water into London (45mins) as opposed 25mins fro weybridge?
im so excited you like the school as much as me.
would be grateful if you could expand on the subject of state schools, given everyone goes on how great state schools are in this part of the country! please bear in mind, the most renowned ones we cant get into as the move is too late, one needs to be in the catchment area and they are oversubscribed anyway. what do you think?
should we consider state from next year? please don't say-if you can afford the fees stay with lambrook. of course, would love to stay in private education (im so pro private, even though both DH and I are state educated), but haven't got unlimited funds, so basing it on the hope that DS (at least one of them) will become either the next PM, David Beckham or George Clooney!!!! LOL

CharlesRyder Tue 17-Jun-14 22:07:23

Is this a forever home? If so you need to consider where you want the DSs to go to senior as well. Will you send them to board? If you wouldn't consider that then you are looking at Wellington, Hampton or RGS (Guildford) really. This may colour where you want to live.

In state primary schools at the moment there is HUGE pressure to up the standards in literacy and numeracy. This is good and means that many state primaries the standards in these subjects are at least the equivalent to the non-selective preps. However, at what cost? The breadth of the curriculum is being hacked, the amount of sport, time spent on productions and music squeezed. Time out to just be children is increasingly a thing of the past. Major preps have long days and often Saturday lessons, a wider range of facilities and much bigger budgets. Of course they can offer a richer educational experience.

I think you would be better doing Reception at Lambrook, rent near VW and spend some time getting to know the commuter belt. You can move if you want to in time for your younger DS to start school and one move would not harm your elder boy.

ElleBon Wed 18-Jun-14 08:26:11

CharlesRyder thanks. really comprehensive summary! so you were going to send your DD to lambrook, where are you living? shame you are moving as could have met with you on their first day at school! I fell you are quite pro private too! have you found a new school in dorset?
perhaps I should stop worrying about other areas as I have to commit to lambrook by the end of the week as this is the last place available for this years reception! I was going to rush and research weybridge today?!
Windsor is too far from lambrook, is it not? also, need to be near the station as in 0.2-0.4miles as DH doesn't drive! so the house on rightmove would be too far out!
Fanspamtastic pointed out re A30 and im still in a panic over that, but really couldn't live in winkfield row as too rural for us and no station! would wherever we would be-ALWAYS goin to be a drive to school!

Pufflemum Wed 18-Jun-14 08:34:30

Lots of children are leaving Lambrook at the moment, I know of three who are joining Hall Grove next term, I would question this carefully.

It seems that for the last years Lambrook was deemed the best of the two but recently Hall Grove has upped its game and leaped ahead, the fees are also more reasonable. You couldn't live in Maidenhead and go to Hall Grove though. Most parents live Ascot, the Sunnings, Chobham, Camberely, Bisely areas.

grovel Wed 18-Jun-14 09:47:32

Lambrook is great. Live in Winkfield Row (where Lambrook is). 2 miles from Ascot station. Could your DH cycle to the station?

grovel Wed 18-Jun-14 10:05:49

You get a whole lot more for your money in WR than VW.

ElleBon Wed 18-Jun-14 10:16:00

thanks pufflemum and grovel! that's very worrying that you are saying kids are leaving lambrook! grovel, when you say lambrook is great-have you had kids there? you know anyone? re winkfield row-too rural for us and would not want DH to cycle down country lanes!!!!! also, its ok in the summer, but bearing in mind it gets dark at 4pm 6months of the year!!!!!! you see what I mean?
guys please talk to me about the schools!

Pufflemum Wed 18-Jun-14 11:29:20

Elle I have sent you a PM

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