Our easy guide to living in Thames Valley West

  • 29th Jul 2021
  • 5 minute read
  • Written by Ellie New
Our easy guide to living in Thames Valley West

Have you thought about relocating to the picturesque Thames Valley? Offering areas of outstanding natural beauty, a rich history, charming towns, and villages.

The Thames Valley lies in the South East of England and is an informally defined sub-region. It’s centred on the River Thames to the west of London, Oxford is classed as its centre. It’s often known as the UK’s version of the ‘Silicone Valley’ due to being a home to a number of technology companies. The Thames Valley offers some of the country’s most beautiful waterfront locations.

Best places to live in Thames Valley West

Dorchester: Dorchester on Thames is a charming riverside village in Oxfordshire. It’s situated around 8-miles southeast of Oxford. Historically, it was a Celtic market centre and Roman town. The village oozes charm and character with wisteria-strewn cottages, stunning town houses, larger 17th century mansions, and traditional countryside-esque pubs encompassing all things quintessentially British. It’s a popular location for professionals as it takes around 15-minutes to drive to the neighbouring town of Didcot from which a train to London is around an hour’s journey.

The Dorchester Abbey is a place of interest and dates back as far as Saxon times its magnificent gothic architecture makes it popular with locals and visitors alike.

Wittenham Clumps is one of South Oxfordshire’s most iconic landmarks and a local hotspot in Dorchester ever popular with outdoor enthusiasts. Standing proudly beside the Thames providing beautiful scenery across the landscape, majestic red kites swoop overhead, and the wildflowers provide a trail of beautiful blooms.

Property prices in Dorchester on Thames on average according to Rightmove had an overall price of £584,231 over the last year. The majority of sales in Dorchester were detached properties, fetching an average £690,000. With terraced properties attaining prices of £391,250, and semi-detached houses sold for an average of £510,000.

Highclere: Highclere is a village in the North Wessex Downs. Best-known for being the filming location of popular period drama Downton Abbey, which featured in Highclere Castle – a Victorian house of the Earl of Carnarvon. Throughout Highclere you’ll find beautiful sweeping countryside with magnificent views.  

Rightmove suggests properties in Highclere had an average price of £859,000. Detached properties were the most sought-after fetching on average £912,778. Terrace properties were also popular and fetched an average price of £375,000.

Henley-on-Thames: Henley-on-Thames is described as one of the most beautiful towns in England and has been voted by The Times as one of the best places to live within the English countryside, it’s often crowned the winner of the RHS Britain in Bloom award for its stunning displays.

Sitting at the foot on the Chiltern Hills, an area of outstanding natural beauty you’re never far from picturesque countryside. Henley is famous for the Royal Regatta, which takes place along the river. Henley also plays host to a variety of other events including The Henley Art Trail, Women’s Regatta, Rewind Festival, Thames Traditional Boat Festival, and many others including seasonal gatherings.  

Within the centre of Henley sits a bustling market square, home to a variety of boutique shops and restaurants. Perfect for catching up with friends and family or just simply enjoying some retail therapy. There are endless attractions to discover, including golf and sports clubs, as well as idyllic parks.

Henley has easy access to major motorways such as the M4 or the M40 with great transportation links to London taking around an hour by car and by rail.

Rightmove suggests properties in Henley-On-Thames had an overall average price of £698,012 over the last year. A large majority of sales in Henley-On-Thames during the last year were terraced properties, selling for an average price of £583,430. Detached properties sold for an average of £997,452, with semi-detached properties fetching around £713,619.

Things to do in Thames Valley West

Didcot Railway Centre

The Didcot Railway Centre is a great day out for locomotive fans. Explore the unique collection from Great Western Railway there are locomotives, carriages, wagons, buildings, and small artefacts spread across 21-acres. In the spring and summer months, you’ll be able to take the whole family on unlimited rides of the steam trains as well as exploring the rest of the museum during one of the centres Steam Days. Take a pit stop in the café and enjoy a variety of refreshments. There’s fun for all the family at Didcot.

Reading Abbey Quarter

Take a step back in history and visit the Reading Abbey Quarter. The Abbey dates back as far as medieval times. Reading was the site of a religious community centred round a magnificent church and one of the largest monasteries in Europe. It’s also home to a number of different artefacts and the burial place of King Henry I. There’s several different exhibitions that are hosted in the Abbey Quarter as well as music and performances, talks and tours and a number of different workshops. There’s bound to be something for everyone.

The Living Rainforest

The Living Rainforest is an indoor greenhouse tropical rainforest in Thatcham. It consists of three glasshouses and is operated by the Trust for Sustainable Living filled with lush tropical plants and animals. Mimicking the sights and sounds of a real tropical rainforest. Here you’ll come across a wide range of creatures, great and small, ranging from birds and butterflies to a two-toed sloth, armadillo, carpet python and much more. Experience close encounters with a number of different animals during a keeper experience. The Living Rainforest is a great day out and perfect for families. Find out how plants, animals and humans are all linked.

Stonor Park

Stonor park is a country house and deer park situated in a valley in the Chiltern Hills. The house has been home to the Stonor family for 850 years and the family still occupy the property and parts of the house open to the public. The family’s history dates back to the 12th century, family heirlooms can be found within the house which tells tales of the family’s life throughout the ages.

The parkland offers guests the chance to experience its lush green slopes and trees which have stood for centuries. Witness the fallow deer roaming across the park land amongst other animals such as rabbits, pheasants, badgers, hares, soaring red kites, ravens, and buzzards. The park hosts a variety of events, from car shows, to the circus and live performances. The adventure playground is extremely popular with little ones with lots of different apparatus for the kids to climb, explore, and enjoy.

Henley Royal Regatta

The Henley Royal Regatta is a rowing event held annually on the River Thames by the town of Henley-on-Thames. The Regatta was established on the 26th of March 1839 and to this day is still an extremely popular event. Usually over 300 races take place of an international standard which can include everything from Olympic and elite performance racing to crews new to the event. Racing across five days of the competition. After a day’s racing has taken place, you can enjoy shopping or dining out in the picturesque Henley market town centre.

The Thames Valley spans through several towns, villages, and cities, offering a wide variety of places to live and things to see and do. If you’re looking for a property in the Thames Valley West area, then we are here to help, the easy way. For more information and advice, get in touch at customer.service@easyproperty.com

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