Hi everyone. This is a bit long, but I am desperate for advice. Just need to say a little bit about myself before I ask your advice. I am a single parent to a lovely 5 year old girl. I split from my husband just over a year and a half ago. It has been the worst year and a half of my life, he was a nasty man. Anyway I am currently living with my parents (a bit strange being 38) as I have nowhere else to live at the moment. My daughter is going to the local school. Anyway I need to move on with my life this year. And in doing so I need to buy a house and start again. I am thinking of moving maybe moving Winchester as it is only about 30 mins from where I am now and an hour from her father. The area looks lovely and I have heard amazing things about the schools. My huge concern though is the schools. I have just seen a thing on the BBC south news that says because of the baby boom they are having to add temporary classrooms to all the schools in Winchester and that this is pushing all the school resources to the limit. Will my daughter even get into a school if they are so oversubscribed. I am so scared of buying a house then finding out I cannot find a school for my daughter, there is no way I can afford private education. I was hoping to move to coincide with the start of the school year in September so she would be going into year one. I cannot stay where I am, partly because it is not my house but also I am so lonely here. It is a small village and I am the only single divorced person around. In a year and a half I have not met anyone in the same situation. Is Winchester friendly? Is it just families or are their other single parents like me? Please please can you give me any advice on the school situation, also areas to live would be amazing and if I am just going to be moving from one place that is just families to another with no single parents and I will just feel as alone and different as I do now. Thank you for your advice. MM x
Hi, Sorry to hear you have had such a hard time. I am also looking for advice on schools as we are also looking to buy somewhere, so I'd also welcome any advice anyone has out there. My little boy is 18 months now, so not so urgent but like you I don't want to buy and then struggle to get into somewhere as its so expensive to move again.... I can however give you some advice on Winchester. I moved here October last year and I have found it really pretty, and also quite friendly. You have to get out and about a bit, and like everywhere there are occasional cliques, but generally I have found most people to be very open to making new friends. In fact many of the people I have met have also moved fairly recently, usually from London or surrounding areas. There are quite a lot of toddler groups and activities around so if you get out and do stuff and get talking to people you should find it pretty easy to build up a network. I dont know how many single parents there are, but as its usually mums taking toddlers and children to groups, its usually the other mums you make friends with...There are also a few social groups for adults, Ladies Circle for example, so if you wanted nights out and could get a babysitter you could try that. You could look at renting initially to seeif you like it and see how the school situation pans out? Hope this helps a bit!
Hi, have you considered looking slightly outside Winchester? Maybe Romsey, Chandlers Ford or Hursley? I live in Chandlers Ford and my son goes to a primary school between here and Winchester which I can't recommend highly enough - and they have plenty of spaces. It's a small village school but the surrounding area is full of people who either send their kids to private school or don't have young children. I know what you mean about being the only single parent, I feel a bit like that at the moment and it's isolating - I'm too committed for the singles, and too single for the committeds! So if you do move down here, feel free to PM me and we can meet up