Moving to Bristol - secondary school advice please

(18 Posts)
takethegirloutofwales Thu 13-Feb-20 09:37:58

We've been in London since 2002. Loved it, moved from North to South and been settled in the suburbs for 13 years. We've finally had enough. My husband's London company has a Bristol branch and he is going to request a transfer. We've looked and could buy a property a 15 minute drive from the office. If we can sew it all up, then we can move before DS starts year 6, get him settled somewhere and then apply for secondary school in the usual way. My daughter is currently in year 7 so I guess it's going to be harder for her in that we will need to find a secondary that will take her. If push came to shove we could go private for her. But I guess my question is for anyone in the know around Bristol, where would we look to base ourselves for decent secondary catchment for my son. My husband's new office would be on Queen Charlotte Street and we'd love for him to half a short journey to work of under half an hour. In terms of what we can afford to buy, we'd be looking up to about £750k. Would be great to get some insider info.

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sleepismysuperpower1 Thu 13-Feb-20 17:45:38

Kingsdown, Bristol might be worth a look? It's a suburb in the catchment area for Cotham Secondary (an 8 minute walk from Kingsdown) which is rated good by ofsted link to school website. you would get a house for your price range there too, and its around a 15 minute drive (with traffic) from Queen Charlotte Street, or a 20ish minute walk. all the best x

SmellMySmellbow Thu 13-Feb-20 17:50:22

Ashton Gate is a good secondary. Large catchment area. For your budget I'd look around Windmill Hill, Southville and Long Ashton. Could walk to his office in under 30 mins/cycle in 10.

SmellMySmellbow Thu 13-Feb-20 17:52:48

Redland Green is a great secondary school too. Again he could walk to the office in 30 mins. Pricier houses in that catchment area, but possibly do-able if you compromise on things. If you are church-goers then St Mary Redcliffe is good too, I'd again look at Southville/Windmill Hill/Totterdown for that.

sleepismysuperpower1 Thu 13-Feb-20 18:22:35

sorry forgot to add, your local primary school for your son from kingsdown would be cotham gardens primary, which is a 5 minute walk away

Mynameis2 Thu 13-Feb-20 18:29:59

I have friends who moved from London to Portishead and commute into Bristol for work. They moved their children at primary school (year 4 & 6) but they are now at the secondary school in Portishead which is apparently very good.

Madcats Thu 13-Feb-20 20:37:08

Give him another 10 minutes and he could do that commute by train from Bath (as long as you don't want a huge house). Fab schools here.

Springcleanish Thu 13-Feb-20 22:15:56

Look at North Somerset, in particular Portishead, Nailsea, Backwell, Clevedon. You get a lot more for your money and really good primary and secondary schools in any of the locations, all within easy commute.

SmellMySmellbow Fri 14-Feb-20 08:34:37

Yes if you want a large house with big garden etc then look outside the city. Quite different feel though obviously, and would be a bigger step from a London move. I like having a smaller house and garden and being able to walk into town and walk to everything else that Bristol offers. We still have great schools within the city! I prefer that it's more multi-cultural too. Horses for courses. Depends on your priorities.

SmellMySmellbow Fri 14-Feb-20 08:36:33

BCCS also worth a look. City centre, very good school. But not catchment based, admissions done on a lottery system so kids come from all over.

whiteroseredrose Fri 14-Feb-20 10:29:00

Try site 'Find and compare schools in England' to compare schools.

takethegirloutofwales Fri 14-Feb-20 11:10:06

Biggest concern for me is getting a space for my daughter somewhere as I know schools are oversubscribed and she needs to join either mid year seven or start of year 8 depending on when we move. I think we will have to rent for a bit maybe as you can’t apply for a school until 30 days before you’re due to move so complicated.

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Jade308 Fri 14-Feb-20 11:45:42

If you are church going I would go for St Mary Redcliffe then look at houses in Bedminster, Ashton, Southville, Totterdown etc

takethegirloutofwales Fri 14-Feb-20 12:10:46

I’m a high days and holidays church goer to be honest. Kids are christened but...not sure we’d count as church going.

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SmellMySmellbow Fri 14-Feb-20 15:04:29

Ok forget st mary redcliffe. Otherwise best ones are Redland Green, Colston Girls and Cathedral Choir (latter not catchment admission but lottery admission). All Central/North Bristol outstanding schools, look at houses in Redland and St Andrews. Pricey area though, so you'd compromise on house size. All the main private schools are in this area too, eg Bristol Grammar. Otherwise I'd look at Ashton Gate school and houses in Southville, Long Ashton, Windmill Hill and Victoria Park. All areas within 30 min walk of DH's work.

SmellMySmellbow Fri 14-Feb-20 15:06:40

Bishopston and Henleaze will be cheaper than Redland and St Andrews btw, and prob still in catchment for Redland Green.

SmellMySmellbow Fri 14-Feb-20 15:09:32

Typical Redland house

TalaxuArmiuna Thu 20-Feb-20 09:35:29

Ashton Gate is an excellent primary school but the nearby senior school Ashton Park is not one I would recommend. it ranks about 20th of the 49 school's in Bristol but that it's only because so many of the others are even more abysmal. its progress-8 score is -0.6 meaning that it is in the bottom 12% in the country for getting progress at GCSE level compared to the baseline of their intake as measured by y6 SATS.

with your budget you can look to getting into the catchment for a decent state school eg Redland Green or Cotham. There's a list ranked by Progress-8 score here

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