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Be Phil or Kirsty for me

(50 Posts)
isleofdaydreams Sun 14-Apr-13 17:39:09

Anyone want to do a Phil or Kirsty and advise me where to move to?

Here are the details....

£500k max
Prefer character home and one that needs work
Must have garden
3 bed plus
Good state schools
Walkable to station (1mile)
Either comes into Moorgate, Liv St, Farringdon, cannon st within 45 mins or London bridge, Waterloo, charing x within 30 mins
Want to live somewhere that feels a bit arty, some culture, independent shops, not rough but not posh, somewhere with a bit of character, not a massive town or city but not a village. Surrounding countryside to be attractive.

Not discounted moving slightly further out to get this as well aware that you will all tell me it ain't out there. Also not discounted staying in london either.

Would also welcome ideas for areas in London with similar criteria above (flat not house though) that allow access to Moorgate/liv street within 50 mins.

Help me Phil and Kirsty !!!!!

invicta Sun 14-Apr-13 17:44:28

St. Albans

isleofdaydreams Sun 14-Apr-13 17:53:15

Not been to Rochester - whats it like? Thinking about st a though bit worried how expensive it is and the travel costs (though us nice there)

invicta Sun 14-Apr-13 19:36:44

Both are historical towns and Rochester has a good Dickens festival every year. St. Albans is expensive. You could consider Redbourn, Southdown ( in Harpenden), or places further out - leighton buzzard, tilsworth etc

Barbabeau Sun 14-Apr-13 20:30:14

Parts of SE London are doable on that budget - Honor Oak, Forest Hill, Brockley, Nunhead, areas near Greenwich / Blackheath but not in them, etc. Loads of parks, decent shops & restaurants, etc. But maybe won't suit if you're wanting to move out of London.

PanicMode Sun 14-Apr-13 21:32:01

Tunbridge Wells......ticks all of your boxes...!

PipsWife Sun 14-Apr-13 21:33:22


DizzyPurple Sun 14-Apr-13 21:36:11

Chislehurst although some bits are very expensive. Some surrounding areas lovely too.

clam Sun 14-Apr-13 21:41:17


vez123 Sun 14-Apr-13 22:32:23

I'd second Honor Oak Park. Bang on budget, good commute into into East end and town via overground, and Thameslink from Crofton Park about 25 minutes into Farringdon. Lots of good and outstanding state primaries, lots of period houses.
good sized 3 bed house

RachelHRD Sun 14-Apr-13 23:18:51

Godalming - slightly over 30 mins into Waterloo but lovely, was used for scenes from 'The Holiday'. Some lovely older properties [ like this]]

RachelHRD Sun 14-Apr-13 23:19:47


TheRealFellatio Mon 15-Apr-13 05:40:47

Coggeshall in North Essex. Absolutely beautiful, a small historic market town, loads of period properties, good road and rail links into London (Liverpool St) lots of independent shops and restaurants, tea rooms, etc, an excellent state senior school, and gorgeous surrounding countryside.

It's a lovely place.

TheRealFellatio Mon 15-Apr-13 05:42:06

Not be walkable to the station though. confused

isleofdaydreams Mon 15-Apr-13 11:35:45

Thanks everyone. Lots of places to now drive round. Was definitely set on moving out of London as wanted space, nearby countryside for lifestyle of running, getting a dog, growing some veg, along with bringing up children.

However it's a bit scary! Love the arty lifestyle of London, independent shops, more open minded views (perhaps) of London. Always thought schools were rubbish in London too? I grew up in countryside so sure I won't find it difficult to change back, just got used to London I guess. Hence I'd like to move somewhere that's a but interesting, with things going on arts/craft/independent shop wise.

isleofdaydreams Mon 15-Apr-13 11:36:58

We were thinking oxted too. Any opinions on here?

PanicMode Mon 15-Apr-13 11:52:27

We looked around Oxted before coming to TW but just didn't have the budget for a big enough house (we have four children)....have you tried browsing There is lots of advice from locals on various places from ex-Londoners!

isleofdaydreams Mon 15-Apr-13 16:43:24

Any thoughts on bishops stortford region too? Or hitchin? My parents are in suffolk so still miles away but nearer than Surrey. My heart wants to go to Surrey as I know the countryside is amazing but feel transport and family ties in east Anglia so better to focus there.

Currently in crouch end and love it. We could stay and buy 2 bed flat with garden but not sure this is right thing to do.

culturemulcher Mon 15-Apr-13 18:26:32

What about this

Walking distance to station, I think. 37mins to kings X. Main line, so frequent trains.

Not the most cosmopolitan town... but...

TheRealFellatio Mon 15-Apr-13 18:29:25

If you want London but in the sticks it sounds like you need Brighton to me.

noddyholder Mon 15-Apr-13 18:30:18

Yes sounds like Brighton!

culturemulcher Mon 15-Apr-13 18:31:44

I think Hitchin would tick most of your boxes - again on the fast Peterborough main line.

Definitely worth taking a look one weekend - I really like the town and we almost moved there, but then headed 2 stops further up the line for a bit more space for our money.

isleofdaydreams Tue 16-Apr-13 08:23:58

Ok great thank you this is v good! I take it you all moved out? How did you find it? Did you settle in ok? What was it like if you were a sahm?

I think the issue is I want to move out but can't seem to find anywhere where you can buy a house with character and space and there is some life and stuff going on. Will go back up to herts to have a look.

isleofdaydreams Tue 16-Apr-13 08:26:07

Think would love godalming too but not sure dh could quite do that commute - may be stretch too far. Office is next to barbican.

What a stupid thing to be fretting about! bangs head on table

culturemulcher Tue 16-Apr-13 09:55:18

We moved out - and wouldn't go back. How you settle in, I think, depends on your expectations.

If you want Crouch End (we used to live 15 mins walk from Crouch End broadway) but with a large house and large garden and all the benefits of good schools, etc, well - so does everyone else - so you'll pay for it!

Places like St Albans or Harpenden do tick your boxes, but you'll probably find that the prices in St Albans are not very different to Crouch End.
I'm amazed at how many friends want to move out of e.g. Crouch End or Balham and think that they'll be able to get a big house, somewhere gorgeous for the same price as their small 2 or 3 bed in London.

The trick is to focus on what you really want. If it's a fantastic town with lots of cultural things going on as well as Outstanding schools, you'll need to compromise on the kind of house you want. If you want a gorgeous house, you'll have to either compromise on the commute or on the vivacity of the town.

Our priorities turned out to be a lovely house, lots of space and v. good state schools. The compromise was the town. We use it more as a service centre (shops, drs, dentists) but not as a place of entertainment. So far, with Cambridge fairly nearby and London only 40 mins down the line, we don't miss the bright lights of Crouch End / Muswell Hill and Hampstead too much. I'd LOVE to be nearer a great independent cinema... but that's about it.

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