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Where to live for easy commute to St Pauls School(41 Posts)
Hello all, I hear Barnes is lovely and easy for DS to commute to SPS. He will be joining in 2 years time, but wanted to just understand what other areas might be within 20 minutes of the school and with a friendly community feel. Thanks !
Hammersmith, Putney. Actually boys attend from all over London. Not that many live locally.
Many St. Paul's boys used to (and probably still do!) take the bus to Hammersmith Broadway and then walk over, or if they lived in Acton or Shepherd's Bush they would just stay on the 72 over the bridge. Boys lived all over West London within your 20 mins, but people came in from all over and travelled a lot longer than that!
I know a few who live locally like Fulham and Putney but I also know a few who travel from somewhere like Cobham. As pp said boys seem to be from all over London.
Thank you so much for your responses. I feel so conflicted - we are in NW London and it would be a 45 min coach journey each way. I know lots do the journey but it isn't the best thing at age 13, especially when the extra time could be used for being out playing sport etc. I am equally conflicted though at the thought of moving/renting somewhere closer to the school as we have all our contacts - doctors, dentists, family etc living near us. Don't know what the right move is so wondering what experiences other people have had.
I am not a big fan of long daily journey for my DS so I understand your concern. But 45 mins is still reasonably doable so you don't need to move prior to him starting the school? Once you see how he's day/week is like, you'll know his needs more, and that'll help your decision where to live?
Honestly 45 mins is really not too bad if it's on a coach. He will probably need the chill out time and can just sit and listen to music or sleep. I wouldn't move house and upend your entire lives just yet until you know how it's going for him at school. One of my friends used to come down from Harlesden to Hammersmith and another from Kilburn, it's not unusual at all.
Is it 45 minutes door-to-door or 45 minutes of coach and then the additional time waiting, getting to the pick-up place etc? I think we can be quite disingenuous about how long a journey will actually take. You know the way people who move out of the city say 'it's only 55 minutes by train' completely ignoring the drive to the station, the parking, the getting to the platform etc.
My kids have a 12 minute train journey to school. In reality, the have to leave 30 minutes all in, 5-7 minutes walk either end, waiting etc. And they find that pretty exhausting and I do think it would be lovely if they were able to walk. I also think that public transport is preferable to a school coach once they're older than y7. More flexible.
Otoh moving is kind of drastic. Do you have other children? Did you not consider one of the plethora of NW schools? Is St Paul's really so worth uprooting for/long journey? (not a loaded question, I've no idea as I've only ever driven passed and it admittedly has gorgeous playing fields.)
Ps Barnes is absolutely lovely but possibly quite insular? The people I know who live there are very close-knit, the kids have all been to the excellent local state primaries, they go on holiday together and all that.
Thank you so much for your replies....currently a 10 minute walk to school, therefore bracing myself. You are right about questioning why St Pauls is worth travelling so far for.....more questions than answers at the moment, need to mull over but this debate is most useful ! Thanks
By the way anyone knows if there may be coaches from Notting Hill to the school and how long that commute takes. No info on school website.
I've got plenty of friends in Barnes, it's a fabulous place. I don't think they're insular - they're friends with me, anyway! Chiswick is also pretty close, Fulham, Shepherd's Bush, Hammersmith as others have said. I think the commute is VERY important, I had a friend who commuted to St Pauls from NW London and it made his teenage years a misery. I'd say either move or choose a school nearer you, there are plenty/
we know of a lot of families living also in Mortlake, Sheen and all the way to Richmond that send their kids to St Pauls. They all take the bus, check the bus routes also coming from that side. From Richmond, you are in NW London / N London with the overground line in no time.
Thanks Eglantine, I agree a commute from NW everyday would be miserable !
I do think Hothouseorflophouse only means the folk at Barnes entertain mainly amongst each other.....
Just wondering how far it would be from Notting Hill way to the school on coach and if indeed there is a coach service at all on that route ?
Barnes isn't some kind of bizarre gated and cloistered suburb where 'people mainly entertain among themselves'. Like any part of London, it merges into all the neighbouring parts with no distinct boundaries (Hammersith, Putney, Roehampton, Sheen, Mortlake, Chiswick) and like any part of London where families tend to congregate, people make friends with similar people and similar aged children, some of whom live nearby. My sister lives in Barnet, rather than Barnes, and has lots of local friends. I think it's quite normal.
But to answer the original question, I wouldn't move for a school unless you wanted to move for other reasons anyway. And I don't think any school is worth a ridiculously long journey; there is bound to be a good school that fits your criteria that is much nearer. We chose one of the nearest schools to us and it has been incredibly helpful.
Ha I'm so sorry I didn't want to offend with my Barnes comment! I'm only going by those that I know who may be atypical (all the women are blonde and look good in running tights too). It is, I would say, notably more homogenous than other bits of London, more (but not exclusively) white and affluent.
Of course no area is hermetically sealed and isolated, but I do think the congestion on Hammersmith Bridge does give it a bit of an island mentality. Having said that they all love living there and I feel envious of how thriving their social lives are!
Southwark best place to live for an easy commute - could probably walk!
Ah, well, I don't live in Barnes and certainly don't look good in running tights, but there are lots of that type all around south west London, and in Hampstead, St John's Wood and Muswell Hill too.
Dorajar - walk from Southwark to St Paul's each day. I don't think so! Have you seen how far away they are?
DS is lucky to have a 15 min bus trip to Hammersmith then a walk over the bridge or (on days without lots of bags) a 20 min cycle ride. Lots of the boys cycle when it’s a bit lighter.
He has friends with up to an hour commute, though. One moved into the boarding house during the week for Year 11 and found it so congenial + convenient that he’s carried on in Year 12.
Oops - was thinking of city of London school (opposite St Paul’s!) - in my defence I used to walk to work at the same time as the school kids and as I now live overseas felt wistful!) - now I realise I’ve got the wrong school then Barnes is a much better idea - south of the river but much further west!! City of London is a good school though!!
zaggy I’m curious. Did u get any info on the commute from Notting hill? We’re struggling with the same issue - NW London to SPJ - to move or not to move? And, if move, where?
Hello lovebeingmum, I haven’t had any direct feedback on distance from Notting Hill to SP.... however I am increasingly convinced if we do go for SP in the end we would ideally like to move closer
The North London coaches to St Paul's don't stop in Notting Hill, it's too close. St Paul's Juniors has a coach from Notting Hill but I can't imagine it would be more than 30 mins as it's about 15 mins to drive directly.
Most boys I knew took the 27 to Hammersmith Broadway. Or if they were further up in Notting Hill they took the H&C line to Hammersmith or the 209 and then walked or bussed over the bridge. 15 mins bus time depending on traffic, plus the walk from the broadway.
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