5 Reasons to Live near Oxford

From its iconic university to an impressive array of gothic architecture and beautiful green spaces, it’s unsurprising to learn that Oxford is a highly sought-after destination with home buyers. With Highcroft less than an hour away from the historic city, Wallingford could be the perfect location for those wanting to be on the doorstep of Oxford.

Let’s take a look at what Oxford has to offer.

1. Premier Education Facilities

Exterior photo of Oxford University

One of the main attractions for families moving to Oxford is the number of award-winning education facilities available in the area. There’s an array of leading public, private, and preparatory schools in Oxford, including the Dragon School, Oxford High School, St Edwards, Christ Church Cathedral School, Cherwell School, and New College School, to name a few. 

Of course, we couldn’t discuss outstanding education in Oxford without mentioning the world-famous University of Oxford. Not only is it the oldest English-speaking university in the world, but it has also remained in the top 10 list of the best universities in the world for decades and is now one of the largest employers in Oxford. 

This prestigious establishment has provided unparalleled education since 1096, and is proud to have Olympic medal winners, Nobel Prize winners, Prime Ministers, and Heads of State among its graduates.

2. It’s a Technology Hub

Oxford has been at the forefront of research and innovation for decades, with prominence in health technology and computing. The city is proud to support and create opportunities for new tech start-ups, which has led to Oxford being consistently named in Europe’s top 20 European tech investment cities in recent years, attracting a variety of successful international investors - bringing jobs and economic growth to the area.

Oxford is now home to many UK tech leaders, including the cyber security firm Sophos, the biotech company Immunocore Limited, vehicle software company Oxbotica, and Oxford Nanopore Technologies, innovators in the field of DNA and RNA sequencing technology. With biotech and digital industries expanding rapidly, and Oxford aspiring to be a leading centre for science and tech innovation, it’s clear why this might be the perfect destination for those seeking a career in these popular sectors.

3. Iconic Buildings

Exterior photo of Old Building

The city is full of incredible medieval architecture and historical landmarks, so if you want to live in an area steeped in history and heritage, Oxford is ideal. Once described by poet Matthew Arnold as ‘the city of dreaming spires’, Oxford’s skyline is filled with ornate towers and gothic church spires.  The Saxon Tower at St Michael, Christ Church Cathedral, and the University Church of St Mary the Virgin are awe-inspiring structures – you can even climb to the top of the latter for a stunning 360-degree view of the city.

As you explore the city, you’ll discover a collection of architectural masterpieces, including the Sheldonian Theatre – designed by the famous Sir Christopher Wren, the Bridge of Sighs on New College Lane – connecting two parts of Hertford College, the partly-ruined, 11th century Oxford Castle, and the neo-classical facades of the Ashmolean Museum, and the University of Oxford’s Radcliffe Camera. 

4. Getting Around is Easy

Despite being the only city in Oxfordshire, Oxford still has a more compact feel than other cities in south east England. The city is mostly pedestrianised, which makes it easy to get around and explore Oxford’s many shops, cafes, and restaurants on foot. The roads here are also very bike friendly, with plenty of cycle lanes and bicycle hire options available. 

Oxford is also well connected by road and public transport. There are regular bus services to take you around the city and beyond, while the train station located just outside the city centre can take you to Reading in just half an hour and to London Marylebone in just over an hour. You’ll also find regular Cross Country services to places such as Birmingham, Manchester, and Edinburgh, making Oxford popular with commuters. The M40 is also the closest motorway to Oxford and can take you to destinations up and down the country, whether you’re travelling for work or leisure. 

5. Award-Winning Parks

Picture of Oxford park on a summer's day

Despite being a city, Oxford has plenty of open, green spaces to enjoy just moments from its centre. Port Meadow is located to the north of the city and is a beautiful area of common land where you’ll usually find grazing cattle and horses. 

 University of Oxford’s Botanic Garden is the oldest of its kind in the UK and is home to an array of exotic and rare plant species from all over the world. The Lower Garden here sits adjacent to Christ Church Meadow, a popular walking, running, cycling, and picnic spot bordered by the tranquil River Cherwell and the iconic River Thames. 

The city also has award-winning parks, such as Bury Knowle Park, Cutteslowe and Sunnymead Park. All are popular destinations for families and hold the Green Flag Award for being two of the UK’s cleanest green spaces. You can also take a peaceful stroll and gaze at the narrowboats as they sail along the Oxford Canal – a 78-mile waterway that connects the River Thames and Grand Union Canal.

If you fancy a drive, Blenheim Palace is just a 30-minute drive away. This 110-acre lake and park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and boasts Europe’s largest collection of ancient oak trees. 

If you’re looking for property in Oxfordshire, Highcroft has recently launched a brand-new collection of homes in the beautiful town of Wallingford. 

Discover the latest opportunities in Oxfordshire here.