Leamington Spa(26 Posts)
My husband's been offered a job in Coventry so we're looking to move from London to somewhere more local. We're going to have to move quickly and aren't very familiar with the area so I'd appreciate any recommendations people have. Our inclination is to move to Leamington Spa so it would be great to hear from people that know it (or other local areas). We've got a 2 year old so I'd like somewhere that is child friendly. Does anyone recommend any particular local primaries (state rather than private) as I'd like to find somewhere we can stay for at least a few years?
Bishops Itchington (near Leamington) and Bulkington (nearer to Coventry) both have excellent schools. (I'm biased, I work in both!). Rugby also has excellent schools, and grammars, if that's your thing.
Thanks very much. We're due to spend next week in the area so we'll check these out.
Kenilworth has good schools, people move there for them. Leamington fun though but look carefully at catchment areas.
I echo to be careful to look at catchment areas if you are likely to be stressed by school intakes in a few years.
We looked at moving there but the schools seemed to be v over subscribed.
What will you be doing?
Kenilworth is nice and less studently more family based
You would get more for your money rugby or Leicestershire way with a commute of 30 mins
Solihull, Knowle, Balsall Common or Hampton in Arden especially would be good for schools. If it was me moving from London, I would go for Knowle or Hampton in Arden - leafy commuter villages with easy access/in catchment to excellent primaries/secondaries. 30 min commute to Coventry and 30 min the opposite direction to Birmingham.
You get more bang for your buck housewise in Leamington Spa but the schools aren't as good imho. I wouldn't choose to live in Coventry all.
Thanks so much everyone for taking the time to reply. I'm going to look into all of these places and will be aware of school catchments. They seem to be a nightmare in most UK towns!
My husband will be at the Coventry Uni and I work from home so don't need to be particularly close to any particular location. I'd like to be somewhere that I can get out and see real live humans at some point during the day, as I get a bit stir crazy otherwise.
We've got friends in bishops tatchbrook between leamington spa and Warwick, just off the m40. It's a lovely area and loads to do with the kids nearby.
Also agree Knowle Solihull and Hampton nice too if you don't mind the commute. Personally I don't like balsall common though, no soul to the place.
In general look out for where the HS2 route will be if that will affect you
Cov wouldn't be my bag but Earlsdon is the nice part
In your situation id choose kennilworth
There are an awful lot of new builds going up on the Whitnash edge of Leamington, extending from "Warwick Gates" to "Mallory Grange" all the way to one in Bishops Itchington. I think it's Persimmon and David Wilson among others. They look pretty nice.
Agree that bishops tatchbrook is also great.
Personally I think Coventry is very overpriced, where as Leamington is a great place and if you can afford to live there go for it.
I'm not a village person, so couldn't stand to be in any of the surrounding villages mentioned, or even Warwick or Kenilworth, but I totally understand other people find those places lovely.
The "in" place to be at moment is Stretton on Dunsmore. Around here you are nobody unless your DC goes to the primary school there. I have actually been told I am abusing my child by leaving them in their current "good" school and not moving them.
You get an awful lot for your money in Rugby. It's apparently in the "golden triangle" whatever that is, but I think it means you are very close to M6/M1 so can commute easily to Cov, Milton Keynes, London. Rugby isn't as awful as people on MN make out - nowhere near as bad as Coventry!
Personally I would love to live in Leamington. The closer to the town center the better IMO but you would need to look closely at primary catchment areas.
High schools are also good in Leamington, but IMO very different, so you might want to decide which type suits you before settling on an area.
For example, I think Southam is Outstanding, but I was told the other day it's massive(12 form entry or something) which personally I would advoid.
I've heard good things about Clapham Terrace, Milverton primary schools, but I'm not sure how up to date that is.
Leamington is a beautiful place to live in, lovely architecture, great shops bars and restaurants. Don't live in Coventry, it's a dump with not much going on. ( for my sins, I do live there due to personal circumstances). You can get a lot for your money compared to London and for a small town, there's a lot going on.
Leamington feels the most like London, compared to any surrounding towns/cities, IMO, so it's definitely a good place to start.
Thanks again for all the replies. I love the idea of a village but think I may be like you AngieBolen and need somewhere a bit bigger. I've only lived in big cities so it might be a move too far for me to start with. My husband grew up in a village and he is really keen on that option though, so we'll definitely check out the villages too.
You all seem pretty consistent in your opinion of Coventry! I think we'll stick to the surrounding areas rather than the city itself.
Coventry is not "a dump with not much going on"
It is not to everyone's tastes, of course, but thousands of us live here quite happily. Like every other large city it has areas that suit some people more than others.
Leamington, Kenilworth and some of the other places mentioned all have their good and bad points.
If your Dh is working at Coventry University this is in the centre and he could even live somewhere quite decent within walking distance. We even have nice schools
Some recent events/activities
Coventry half marathon.
Amazing museums, most of them free.
War memorial park (beautiful)
Some beautiful architecture and historical buildings. (Yes and a few pound shops if we are being critical)
It is a very child friendly, vibrant city.
If we are talking overpriced, then look no further than Kenilworth (and do watch out for the proposed HS2 route)
I'm glad you like Coventry so much, lollipop!
It's not my cup of tea, and I think it's overpriced.
And let's be honest, the beautiful architecture is very limited!
We'll have to agree to disagree. Leamington would be my choice any day.
Coventry recently came third in this poll of unhealthiest high streets in the UK...
I know Stretton on Dunsmore well, went to school there myself. When did it get so popular as I've always found it pretty nondescript? There are lots of decent villages near Rugby, and the town centre itself, while nothing to write home about, does its job. You're near enough Coventry and Birmingham if you need a decent day out shopping anyway.
Since the school got Ofsted Outstanding in 2012, Sundaysmum.
I know people who are driving their DC to school there from Rugby....obviously Ofsted Good schools aren't good enough for them, and TBH if I were to move my DCs school it would be to there. The whole village seems to be full of very enthusiastic parents who want the best for their DC, and the DC from the village seem to do well in lots of sports activities etc.
It seems to be a very pretty village, but personally I could never live in a village. I'd much prefer to be in walking distance of a town center.
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