Surrey & Hampshire mums --- I need your help!!!(85 Posts)
We currently live in SW London and need to move further out next year. Problem is we don't know where to go as I'm American and DH is German so we've no knowledge of areas outside London.
We have 2 LOs (9 mo, 2years) and a dog, so first of all want good (non-private) schools.
DH wants to commute by train to the City in under 50 minutes.
I just want some nice people around and shops to walk to!
Is there any hope in hell of finding such a 4-bed place for under £500k out in Surrey or Hampshire? HELP!!!
many many thanks
What about Odham or Hartley Wintney in the north of Hampshire, both are about 40 mins from London plus a short drive to the station, schools are good, villages look nice etc.
Is the New Forest too far from London? Prices there are lower and schools are good.
Odiham and Hartley Wintney are lovely but quite small. You would have to get in the car for a proper supermarket shop. Hook is close by and has a station (and a supermarket) although you would have to get a stopping train to Waterloo which means that it might be about an hour on the train.
I was going to suggest Farnborough. It must be about 40 mins on a fast train into Waterloo and it has some lovely property and some good schools. Only problem is that the town centre is not very nice. However, Farnborough is right next door to Camberley (you can't really see where one starts and the other finishes) and when I lived in Farnborough we always went to Camberley shopping as it is much nicer. Empress Park in Farnborough as it is walkable to the station and has some nice houses.
Actually Camberley is nicer (I have lived there too) but I am not sure about the train links - we always drove to Farnborough to catch a train even though Camberley has a station.
Basingstoke is 50 mins on a fast train to Waterloo and has everything you could want, but it is a little bit 'new town' and lacks character. However, the houses are affordable, the countryside is great and it has good transport links.
If you want character and good schools one stop further down the line is Winchester. It can be pricey but you should get a decent 4 bed for under £500k. However, I think the train time into London is about 1hour 10mins. A lot of people still do it though.
Oh thanks so much for all the ideas...
It was actually Winchester which got us to thinking about seriously moving further out. It just looks perfect. lovely shopping, lovely homes, fresh air...alas it is too far away. Especially because we need to be able to get to Heathrow reasonably quickly what with our family being abroad and all.
Will def check the areas you all suggested. It is just so hard when you have NO idea what these places are like -- and you know how it is, when you come from here, you just know because you've heard all your life how this or that place has good schools, or shops, or whatever...sigh. Keep it coming
aDad -- lovely lovely but too expensive!!
In the areas that have been suggested there are some nice places. On the Waterloo to Basingstoke line there is a town called Fleet which is much nicer than Farnborough, Camberley, Aldershot (the neighbouring towns).
There is also Farnham which is more upmarket but I'm not sure what the train links to London are like.
Guildford and surrounding area is popular with London commuters but as such the prices are high and you'll get less house for your money.
In Fleet you can get a 4, 5 or even 6 bed house for £500k There is a development called Elvetham Heath which is popular with people from out of town becuse it has a pub, comunity centre, supper market, church, childrens play groud and school all on one estate. Plus there is also the town centre and good links to bigger towns (half hour from Guildford, reading etc and slightly further to Winchester, Southampton)
ah, guess it would be what with proximity to London.
exactly the problem...our budget only goes to so much (maybe mabye £500 max) but we must stay somewhat close to the city. it's murder out there...
I live in Fleet and the commute is OK, you can normally get a seat, though you can't park at the station much after 7.45.
Elvetham Heath is a very popular (expensive) estate - don't expect much garden! but the houses are new and as estate's go it's more attractive than most - the school is woefully too small though.
I like it here, it's close enough to town to work OK, but far enough out to be in the country.
All the other towns mentioned are good too - Hartley Wintney is more of a large village, Odiham is VERY nice but no train link.
Even Basingstoke has fast direct trains and a re-developed town centre, but you'd need to choose your location carefully.
and of course we're all really friendly!
I would second, or third I suppose, Fleet Its much nicer than Farnborough! If you go for a village, Rotherwick perhaps, there are no areas to carefully avoid, Basingstoke and Farnborough have some areas that are not so great but handy for the shops.
Do you tend to aim for country or town?
Have you thought of going out towards Amersham (Bucks)?
What about West Byfleet 1 stop further on than Weybridge, def cheaper some good schools - you've got Woking and Staines for easy shopping. Close to Heathrow (couple of junctions along the M25), plenty of fast trains to Waterloo. House prices vary but £500k should buy you a 4 bed although not the ones in 4 acres of land etc. Are you wanting state or private education, can't move for private schools around here
Depends how important the 50 minute train journey is.
Fleet is OK but they only have stopping trains to Waterloo so it takes about an hour. Farnborough has faster trains which take 35 mins.
I was going to say, also, does it have to be Hampshire and Surrey? I have also lived near Chelmsford and that is a decent place and very good secondary schools (some of the best state schools in the country) and good primary schools too. I think it is 45 mins into London from Chelmsford station.
Hi Kel <<waves>>!! 'Tis me from AN/PN board!
Hope you are well lovely!
I live in Hampshire and Winchester is lurvely. The commute by train from Winchester is 50mins exactly and if you live there I can show you around! I used to go to college there.
The shops in Winchester are ok, but you are only 15 mins drive from Southampton which has great shopping.
If you want to be around some other Americans, then Sunningdale area may be worth considering. House prices are a bit higher, though Sunninghill can be cheaper, 4-bed for sale at 312,000 and others around 460k (would involve drive to station at Sunningdale, or Ascot).
If you ever did want your children to attend the American school system, then ACS Egham is not far.
Local state primary school has a good reputation, as does the senior school - Charters.
I used to live in Fleet as a teenager, now live in Lightwater (a village near Camberley). The North Hampshire, West Surrey, East Berkshire border area is all quite a nice place to live. Local countryside for dog walking plus parks, reasonable shopping facilities. Only downside is a bit of lack of public transport in some villages. Towns are better for transport links.
Have you had a play with HousePrices.co.uk ... map facility enables you to pan around the map showing average house prices. May be useful for identifying areas, as will show railway lines (though alas not stations for some reason) and aerial photos.
Network SouthEast Rail Map - for finding which Stations are on which routes. Journey Planer - for rail travel times / timetables.
hi all - you are wonderful help!
Hi holly (waves)!!
I'm definitely not looking for American schooling - but def am looking for public schools. If we go private I'd have to go back to work and that's not my goal now.
Nannynick, we looked at Lightwater and liked it because of prices, proximity, schools, and surrounding countryside - but I did think perhaps there was a lack of nice shopping around - just that teeny high street which looked a bit sad to me. Where do you go for proper shopping?? I guess I do want to be nearby more of a "town."
Also, we loved Winchester - exactly the town/country vibe we want: more land around but still quite populated. And nice shops and schools! That 50 minute commute though - is that for real? I thought it was much further out!!!
I need to go through this thread and make a shortlist!
I live in Epsom which is about 35/40mins to Waterloo, Victoria or London Bridge and you can just about get a 4-bed for under 500k here or here the second one is in Ewell which is even closer to London.
I love it here and it has very good schools at both primary and secondary state as well as private schools. Nice people and Epsom has most things you could need shops wise, Waitrose, M&S, House of Fraser as well as your New Looks, Bay Trading etc. Close to big Sainsburys and ASDA for big food shops and Epsom Downs are lovely for walks and you're moments from "proper" countryside.
Missingmyheels, sounds divine...off to check those links...
Yep Kel...it takes exactly 50 mins to get from Winchester to Waterloo on the fast train. I used to do the journey quite often when I skipped college and went shopping!
Oops, sorry, it's 58 mins!
Hope you find what you are looking for lovely!
The commute from Farnham is about 57 mins. Waterloo
Farnham to LHR is about 40 minutes.
Farnham to LGW about 40 minutes.
Farnham to the M3 about 20 minutes.
Farnham to the M25 about 20 minutes.
This is one of the reasons we chose Farnham, that and Farnham Park, the proximity to shops(Guildford, Basingstoke) without living in a shopping type area IYKWIM.
Farnham has a population of 38,000.
Some great schools, one of them is a beacon school and one is not far behind and the others are pretty good as well.
Do not even think about Farnborough, we drove to look at a house, took one look at the IBM roundabout and drove around it and out of Farnborough. I am sure it has nice people but it has no soul.
Here endeth the advertising for Farnham
I used to work in Farnborough. It is a hole.
What about Woking? I lived there for a while and really liked it.
Hi to reply re Lightwater - we used to live there and loved it - close to Heathrow and the M3 - you can commute from Brookwood station about 15 mins drive or Woking - which has a lot more trains. Re shopping - you can get the basics in the village (which is a bit soulless but it is a nice village) but Camberley is good for shopping has the great m and s outside of town with a Tesco next door and a Waitrose in Frimley and Sainsburys just off M3 at Camberley too - lots of options and of course Guildford is only 20 mins away with great shopping and Kingston 40 mins away. Have i persuaded you? The housing was cheaper as no railway station actually in the town.
You are right, but Woking is not much better, they ripped the heart out of it in I presume the 70's with the Peacocks and whatever the other one is called. The only saving grace was the market running down the middle of 1970's hell and then they moved that down to one tiny little square opposite the post office.
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