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Want to move out of Bristol, but where to?(23 Posts)
We live in Henleaze but fancy somewhere more rural ahead of daughter starting primary. We primarily want to live near good primary and secondary schools. Dh grew up in a beautiful village so fancies the same for our children but I am concerned about being isolated with 2 and 3 year olds. Dh fancies Chew Magna although he works in city centre (and needs car for work). Also considering Backwell kind of area. Any tips about where to live/schools/community spirit would be greatly appreciated. South of Bristol is ideal as all grandparents are in that direction.
Well, backwell has great schools but is not a beautiful village its an outskirt of bristol. Depends how rural you want to be and how long you want to spend commuting to bristol every day. Chew magna, wrington, Churchill, Langford, long Ashton(but not great secondary school), all worth considering. Or go coastal , clevedon is lovely. Wraxall, failand, kenn, tickenham. Also depends on your budget , type of property remember the houses near the great schools may cost more and factor in increased petrol costs, you will need 2 cars and how you will get out and about in evening if you want to have a drink -taxi costs. Also what other local amenities you want within walking distance or short drive. Lots to think about! Been though this process ourselves 18 months ago it is tricky and also depends on properties becoming available!
Don't underestimate the advantages of being in a city with little kids and not having a one hour min round trip every time you want to go somewhere
Very interesting thank you. We will have a drive around this weekend and make some decisions. Where did you end up, if you don't mind me asking? I agree about the advantages of being in a city but am hoping if I am near enough to towns like Nailsea / Backwell / portishead / clevedon that I won't be driving to Bristol all the time. Most of my friends live in Southville so it wouldn't be much worse than where I am now! X
Thing is there isn't a lot to do in backwell, nailsea etc
Lots of my friends have gone North - thornbury/wootton under edge/dursley way. A couple have gone to Yatton and Backwell (excellent for commuting) but as someone who was also brought up somewhere pretty and rural, those places seem like Bristol suburbs to me.
I spent many years in Blagdon and now live in Bristol. I much, much prefer Bristol. Those villages can be very isolating. Do you work? If not, the mummy cliques can be hard to break into and if you do, you will spend a lot of time commuting. However the secondary schools are good but I wouldn't assume a village primary with small class sizes automatically provides a good education.
I would definitely visit these areas - they are pretty but also straight-laced. I found it quite suffocating and I'm not massively unconventional. You will also be extremely car dependent, forget ever getting a takeaway delivered <hollow laugh>.
However if you are into gardening, walking, like your own company and don't mind a 'traditional' lifestyle then it could work.
I live out in a village near Midsomer Norton/Radstock. I used to work in the centre and had access to a parking space, On average an hour. DH works in Fishponds and he gets in for 7am and has a 40 minute drive, it's worse coming home as he seems to hit school let out and then early rush hour.
However, I love where I live. We are right on the edge of a village, but 5 minutes away from the two towns I mentioned above, by car, or a 40 minute walk (pregnant speed). Some great local facilities (pool, library, children's centre) and a wide variety of toddler groups.
One thing I will say for living out of a city is the buses can be crap and without a car it can be rather lonesome.
For example to get into the centre, I can catch one bus, but because it goes around the villages, it can take 2 hours to get into town, yet driving it can take me 40 minutes.
Chew Magna is nice, popular commuter village to Bristol, I know lots of people who live there and love it, but prices can be high.
Thanks so much for the valuable advice, i have really been keeping it in mind.We spent half a day driving around lots of areas yesterday. We have excluded loads of areas of the Somerset levels as we have realised lots of the small villages would be a bit isolating. Still very interested in flax bourton, wraxall, some parts of Backwell and bizarrely Clevedon! I really like some of the seaside bits and we are going to investigate further. Bit worried about commute though.
Midsummer norton is lovely I know but a bit
close to inlaws far for us. Still have to drive around win ford, wins combs, Blagdon Chew Magna. Please feel free to give opinions on and places I have mentioned.
We are in the same boat emoo so I'm interested in your thoughts. We plan to move in July, also have schools in mind as DS is 3. I really like Long Ashton but worry about schools being oversubscribed. Flax Bourtn lovely too. I Chew magna but it certainly is pricey.
I worry about feeling isolated too, so dont want to be too villagey. Like you, we are doing lots of drives around at the weekends, checking out new places!
Peppapig - how interesting that we are going through the same process. After two solid days of driving around we have decided on the backwell/flax bourton area (or just outskirts of backwell to be precise) to maintain proximity to Southville friends and bristol and importantly waitrose! We also loved around Wrington so might also consider that if a really nice house comes up. House going on the market in the next few weeks so watch this space. Would love to know how you are getting on.
how exciting that youve chosen somewhere, thats very much the kind of areas we have been looking at. I quite enjoy these weekend drives, checking out new places - both DSs fall asleep in car and DH and I actually get to have a proper conversation!
Haven't looked at Wrington yet so thats another place for us to check out.
We are only renting at the moment so that means we can move on from were we are at fairly short notice without having to worry about selling, but theres not a great deal of rentals come up in the more rural places so have less to choose from.
Hopefully your house sale will go smoothly and the dream home will crop up in Flax Bourton! Keep me posted on how its going, we can compare notes on the big move...
This isn't exactly in the spirit of this thread so aplogies but just to say that most of the people I know who have done this have subsequently moved back in or want to move back in... Just saying...
The issue with backwell is that its neither here nor there, its just outside bristol, none of the advantages of being in a pretty country village nor the benefits of being in town. Its a "nothing" tyfore of place. That said, it does have very good schools and e that reason could be a good move.
Op on another thread you mentioned clevedon, longer commute but very nice place I love hill road area.
I'm afraid I have to agree with because. I've seen so many people move out for 'a better quality of life' and then move back. 18-24 months seems to be the usual time span.
I often wonder what exactly it is that means the reality doesn't live up to the dream. Most people I've spoken to underestimate how hard it is to get to know people and also the reality of being so car dependent.
But good luck!
I lived for a while in a 'nowhere' kind of place in Hampshire and it was just as others have said, really difficult to make friends and had to drive everywhere. Bristol is a great city to raise young children, there is so much to do, maybe you're just living in the wrong part? You say you have friends in Southville, what about living there? You can walk to the city centre in about 20 mins, no need for a car.
Really appreciate all of the advice and totally understand what everyone is saying about potential to be isolated in countryside. Dh wants to be quite rural whereas I have been trying to ensure we are close to amenities etc. the truth is neither of us are city people having both grown up in villages. I have lived in nice areas of bristol - clifton, redland and Henleaze, but the city is just not me and I find seeing concrete all of the time extremely depressing.
Dh not sold on backwell in the end so I am taking him to thornbury tomorrow as I fell in love with that area last weekend. It is close to beautiful countryside and might present quite a nice compromise for us. Any opinions on this area / surrounding areas would be great fully received.
If you are looking North of Bristol, you could look at areas around Winterbourne/Frampton Cotterell - still a bit suburban but not like being in the centre of the city. Iron Acton is a nice little village between Frampton and Yate - children access Winterbourne International Academy which is a good secondary. If you want to look further out, Wotton Under Edge is also a lovely market town a bit like Thornbury - again great secondary school (Katharine Lady Berkeley) and some nice villages surrounding it such as Kingswood village.
Thanks for advice. drove around a lot of those areas last week. Dh vetoed wooton under edge unfortunately, as its a bit further than he wants to commute. Fortunately he also loved Thornbury and we are both really excited about moving there . Just need to sell our house first!
It's a while since I posted here but I thought I would update in order to say a big thanks to all of those who gave me their honest opinion. We have decided to stay in Bristol after all. With everything taken together, we did not feel that we were gaining enough to make the extra expenses / commute and inconvenience worth it. We are now plotting on how to spend a fraction of the money we were going to spend on a new house extending our current one to make it even better <breathes a huge sigh of relief>. Thanks again everyone as your opinions are invaluable
and may have saved me about 50k
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