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moving to Bristol | family areas part 1

If you’re thinking of moving to Bristol, or moving within Bristol, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s part one of the guide on good areas of Bristol to live with a family.

Along with some of Bristol’s parents themselves, I’ve compiled this brief guide for you keen movers. The hope is that it sets you thinking, encourages you to look around some different areas, and find something that suits you.

Bristol truly does have something for every interest, culture, religion and family structure. I’m not saying it’s cheap as chips, because it’s not. But it is a great place to raise a family, work, and have a social life yourself.

Before we dive into some of the areas themselves, here are my top tips for getting what you want:

  • Think about schools and childcare, maybe even before you start looking at houses. Ask local parents (you can use the Bristol Parent FB group for this if you want!). Ring nurseries/childminders and ask about waiting lists. One good suggestion for childcare is to look nearer your office than your house.
  • If you have a car, drive down the streets you are looking at in the evening, after home time. That’ll show you how much parking is actually available, as opposed to at daytime house viewing time when it can be quieter.
  • If you have a dog, or just like getting out to the park, look at how close in reality you are to several interesting walks and routes. Some places in Bristol are not very near more than one park.
  • Bristol houses of Edwardian and Victorian terrace era tend to have four issues: a bit of damp, draughty old windows, narrow gardens and steps up to the front door, although you might be lucky and get one that has already had the first two fixed. If you’re expecting, really give thought to buying a house with steps up to it. It’s no fun when the baby is asleep and you don’t have the strength to pick up the buggy!
  • City centre living isn’t as out of the question as you’d think, with a family. There are a lot of flats going up, townhouses, and hidden away historic areas to consider. However, harbourside can get hectic at night, there’s lots of bars and clubs. There’s also, not meaning to be patronising, a LOT of open water in Bristol harbourside. It can be a bit nervewracking with little kids.
  • A word on Clifton, Redland, Westbury, etc. As expensive as London, nearly! And don’t forget, Clifton has a very heavy student population, so it’s not always perfectly geared up for preschoolers. However, it is beautiful and has a lot to offer.

Anyway, let’s get into it!

Fishponds

Pretty green, pretty great views, full of families, and very commutable to the city centre.

Morning commute. #bristol #fishpondsbristol #commute #sunrise #winter

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Kate says “Good value and varied housing stock, Oldbury Court/Snuff Mills, really strong community vibe (check out FishFest, People’s University of Fishponds, Kingfisher cafe), culturally diverse, Bristol Met school doing really well, Bristol to Bath cycle path, loads of useful amenities on Fishponds Rd. I could go on… Moved here from Ashley Down last year and haven’t looked back”

Barton Hill

Sophie says, “Barton Hill has loads of community activities, great parks at St George and Netham. Great transport links. Less expensive houses as  it’s a “less desirable” area but it’s changed so much over the last ten years and I can see its continuing to improve. Great place to live.

Staple Hill

Gail says, “Staple hill is ok. We have lovely Page park, a Victorian park, which has recent and ongoing refurbishment with lottery money, and it’s fairly safe and still has youth clubs for teens.
Lots of lovely independent shops, it’s rare find so many independents on one street. It’s a short walk to downend /kingswood or fishponds. Our Xmas lights and Christmas on the hill parade are lovely. During balloons fiesta lots of balloons come here.

Double Rainbow Magic 🌈✨🌈 #ilovebristol #doublerainbow #swisbest #staplehill #igersbristol

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We have some lovely primary schools in the area, and butchers X2 and a green grocer. We also have an amazing charity shop with freindly dog called misty. The various churches have lovely active role in community events. The people are friendly. We are also on bristol bath cycle path, for safe lovely way to cycle walk to Bath /city centre. We are very close to Cosham hospital, the fab new maternity hospital and out of hours GPs brisdoc.”

Long Ashton

As well as being on the doorstep of beautiful Ashton Court and the location of one of my top five pubs, the Bird in Hand, Long Ashton is very well regarded by Bristol Parent readers.
Rachel says, “Long Ashton – lovely village with strong community feel, on the edge of the city (3 miles) and surrounded by countryside. Good schools too.”

#longashton #balloons #massascent #balloonfiesta #sundaymorning

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Redfield

Miranda says, “Redfield …. Bang on Church Rd and St George’s Park. Lots of shops and new restaurants opening all the time. Multicultural and a great mix of people. Several play grounds, good nurseries and of course St George’s Park! Play Space Soft Play within walking distance. Redfest held on Church Rd & the numbers go up every year!

 If you don’t drive (like me!) no problem! Multiple buses up and down Church Rd and on to Kingswood Shopping Centre & even Grimsbury Farm. Ten minutes into Cabot Circus. Lawrence Hill train station also makes getting to other areas of Bristol easier. If you do drive Avonmeads is five mins one way and Eastgate five mins the other! Supermarkets on Church Rd include Tesco, Lidl and Aldi.”

All houses taken from Rightmove and current as of March 2017. 

This post has no association with Rightmove, however, and is purely opinion based, from me and the readers of The Bristol Parent.

Part 2 of this, featuring many more Bristol locations perfect for families, as suggested by locals, coming next week. Part 3 will be some suggestions of places just outside, but still commutable, to Bristol.

If you have any questions, get in touch, leave a comment, or come and see us on the Bristol Parent Facebook Group.

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6 Comments

  1. Very interesting and slightly shocking to see the house prices these days. Let me know if you want a quote about Portishead for next time.

  2. Fatima Fatima

    Hello I’m Maria from Mumsnet, I was asking about school in Bristol and places to live it’s really nice and helpful your blog thanks a lot !

  3. HJ HJ

    SO TRUE about the steps outside the house. i wish someone had warned us about this before we made the move!

  4. Pete J Pete J

    My Guide to nice and (non-edgy) Family areas in and around Bristol – Commutable in 10 mins outside rush house, and 30 mins during rush hour.

    If you are looking to move to Bristol, but don’t want to end up in a hipster hotspot and are happy living in peaceful Suburbia, you should consider the areas below.

    Westbury-on-Trym- 1930’s – 1950’s housing stock and close to the centre. Lovely high street with good eateries, coffee shops and Deli’s.
    People- Mainly middle class.
    Schools, good access to good and outstanding primary and senior schools.
    Cost of a 3 Bed- A good 3 bed semi will cost £400,000- £450,000
    Westbury-on-Trym Geodemographic
    Family Composition = Families with children in primary school education. Social Grade= Higher than average levels of social classification AB. Average Age = 22 to 40. Affluence = Prosperous.

    Downend- Similar to Westbury-on-Trym. 1930’s – 1950’s housing stock. Lovely high street with good eateries, coffee shops and Deli’s. A little bit further to commute to the centre, but still less than 10 mins outside rush hour, and easy access to M32, M4 and M5.
    Downend has the added benefit of being close to the Bristol cycle path, meaning the centre is easy to cycle too in 10-15 mins.
    People- Mainly middle class.
    Schools, good access to good and outstanding primary schools and good senior schools. Easy access to Colston’s private school.
    Cost of a 3 Bed – A good 3 bed semi will cost £350,000- £400,000. The area is yet to be discovered by Londoners yet, but it’s bound to happen soon. Prices still reflect this.
    Downend Geodemographic
    Family Composition = Families with children in primary school education. Social Grade= Higher than average levels of social classification AB. Average Age = 22 to 40. Affluence = Prosperous

    Stoke Bishop- One of my favourites, but very expensive. Lovely large old houses, close to the Downs and the centre of Bristol.
    People- Mainly middle class.
    Schools- good access to good and outstanding primary and senior schools.
    Cost of a 3 Bed – A good 3 bed semi will cost £500,000.
    Stoke Bishop Geodemographic
    Family Composition = Families with children in secondary and higher education. Social Grade= Higher than average levels of social classification C2. Average Age = 45 to 59. Affluence = Wealthy

    Frenchay- Not far from the centre, and a village fee with a large common. You could be in the Cotswolds.
    People- Mainly middle class.
    Schools – good access to good and outstanding primary schools, and Colston’s private school.
    Cost of a 3 Bed – A good 3 bed semi will cost £400,000 – £800,000
    Frenchay Geodemographic
    Family Composition = Families with children in secondary and higher education. Social Grade= Higher than average levels of social classification C2. Average Age = 45 to 59. Affluence = Wealthy

    • Blimey Pete that’s comprehensive (and really helpful). I think a lot of people will find that very interesting. Thank you!

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