Great kitchens, renovations and curb appeal can influence the value of your property, but location is often at the top of the list when it comes to purchasing a new home and Winchester certainly doesn’t disappoint. With all the attributes of a desirable town, from the historic architecture, to the fashionable boutiques, Winchester has become one of the most sought-after areas to live in the UK.
Well connected to the capital:
Located just off the M3, Winchester is a magnet for both families seeking a quiet refuge outside of London and commuters wanting to easily reach the capital within an hour. If you want to escape further afield for the day, the great transport links offer regular services to other locations across the south coast.
Full of history and period properties:
There are a number of period properties nestled within the charming back streets of the city centre. With Jane Austin a former resident and the Cathedral providing an idyllic backdrop, the famous historic background is reflected within the style of the local properties, making it a popular location for tourists.
Award-winning pubs and restaurants:
Winchester is keen to make sure it lives up to this enviable reputation with some new editions to the local area. From a new coffee/wine bar owned by former Hampshire cricketer, Kevin Latouf and England Rugby captain, Chris Robshaw to the latest location for River Cottage by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Winchester’s culinary hot spots are certainly expanding. The local Michelin star restaurant, the Black Rat is perfect for the ‘foodies’ amongst us, whilst Caracoli on the high street is a great stop-off for a quick coffee and cake.
Leading shopping destination:
Whilst you can expect some of your local high street brands, the city's compact, pedestrian-friendly streets provide an array of shops for people looking for unusual, independent boutiques. The Hambledon, Winchester’s Mecca for designer clothes, vintage homeware and accessories, is a must of anyone looking for an element of ‘London style’ within this historic city. Whilst Forme, situated on Parchment Street, provides exquisite Italian products, hand wrapped to perfection.
Top performing schools:
We have previously mentioned the good reputation of Winchester’s local schools in our recent school catchment area blog. Winchester and the surrounding villages are home to some of the top performing state and private schools in Hampshire. Alongside good primary and secondary schools, like St Faiths and Kings’, Winchester also has a highly regarded six form college for 16-18 year olds. Peter Symonds College's 2013 results were outstanding and it looks likely to once again secure its place as one of England's top colleges.
Busy local markets:
On the second and last Sunday of the month, Winchester hosts the UKs largest regular farmers market, full of locally sourced produce. Chef Rick Stein, considers Winchester’s farmers’ market to be one of the finest in the country. During the festive season, Winchester also runs its annual Christmas market, set in the Cathedral grounds, which is recognised as one of the best in Europe, with a selection Christmas food, decorations and gifts, as well as the popular ice rink. This year the market opens between the 21st November – 22nd December.
Not only do the factors above provide a great living environment, they also heavily impact on the value of your property, making Winchester a great choice for both buyers and investors looking to reap the rewards of a popular location.