Berkshire is a popular choice for many people relocating from London and other cities. For those not quite ready to leave the bright lights behind, town living in Reading with its easy access to London is often a great fit. Other popular options include the thriving towns of Newbury, Maidenhead, Henley and Marlow. Anyone with a rural lifestyle in mind might choose from the beautiful and picturesque surrounding villages of Sonning on Thames, Stanford Dingley and Pangbourne on Thames.
The M4 motorway and fast-speed rail links allow a rapid commute to London, with Heathrow just 30 minutes away. With the arrival of Crossrail serving Reading, Twyford and Maidenhead, the centre of London will be even more easily accessible.
Tilehurst is a popular suburb of Reading, just west of the centre and extending from the River Thames in the north, to the A4 road in the south. The area is lucky enough to have that much sought-after green space with Sulham Woods, featuring glorious rolling fields beyond the trees. Tilehurst also offers some of the best shopping with The Triangle, known locally as ‘The Village’ – a pedestrianised shopping area hosting independent shops and restaurants, including a supermarket and village butcher.
St Edward’s Prep is surrounded by a lot of choice when it comes to deciding where to live. Within Reading itself there are lots of brand new properties being built alongside the River Kennet and some beautiful character properties in and around the University area of Whiteknights. Across the Thames is Caversham and on to Sonning on Thames with the popular area of Earley close by. Local estate agents include Sara Batting, Hoopers, Strutt & Parker and Haslams. Click here to see houses currently for sale in the area.
Reading has a great selection of popular chain stores both on the high street and within the Oracle Centre built alongside the Kennet. John Lewis has been in Reading since 1953 and is still incredibly popular today. Other busy and vibrant places to shop are Newbury, Windsor and Maidenhead with some beautiful boutique shops and independent stores in Henley on Thames and Marlow. There is something for everyone here.
From gorgeous homely pubs such as the Spring Inn in Sulhamstead and the Miller of Mansfield in Goring, to the Michelin-starred L’Ortolan in Shinfield and a host of top-class eateries in the surrounding Berkshire villages, residents are spoilt for choice when it comes to eating out. Click here to discover more about the leading restaurants in Berkshire.
In Reading there is a whole host of dependable chain restaurants including Carluccios in Forbury Square as well as more upmarket restaurants like London Street Brasserie, Valpy’s Street Bar and Bistro and the Reading Room.
The great outdoors
For people who enjoy the outdoor life, Berkshire and neighbouring Oxfordshire is almost unbeatable. This is fantastic walking country. The Thames Path is a lovely hiking route which runs through Oxfordshire and Berkshire from Wallingford, to Tilehurst, through Reading, and onto Henley and Marlow.
Cycling is another popular sport and the area is particularly good for off-road cycling, ideal for families. A network of byways and bridleways make cycling a great way to explore the area.
There is also a variety of adventures on offer at the Andrew Simpson Water Sport Centre, such as sailing, powerboating, stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking and windsurfing. You can sign the children up to one of their regular clubs (like youth sailing, racing and paddle club) or sign yourself up for the family and adult clubs, including windsurfing and ‘ladies that launch’.
Dorney Lake is purpose built for rowing. The lake is owned by Eton College, who spent £17 million developing it. Although Dorney Lake is privately owned, they welcome visitors to enjoy and explore grounds of over 400 acres made up of scenic parkland and arboretum.
Theatre and music
Those who enjoy theatre and music will not be disappointed with the offerings in Berkshire either. The Hexagon in Reading hosts lots of live music, comedy and film screenings for all the family. It’s also where you’ll find the annual pantomime.
Sonning Mill is a former mill house, now containing a restaurant and theatre providing brilliant drama, comedy and music by the River Thames.
The St Edward’s Prep school community
With London just 30 minutes away, Reading offers a fantastic solution to those looking to leave the busy city life behind for a more rural existence but still want access to great entertainment, restaurants and shopping. It is a buzzing and diverse community and our strong St Edward’s community also offers a supportive and welcoming network. If you have any questions about moving to this beautiful county, or would like advice on places to live, please get in touch and we’ll do our best to help.