30th May 2019
The Cotswolds is renowned as a busy tourist destination with the pavements of its picture-perfect villages packed during the summer months. But this bucolic region remains equally popular with those looking to put down more permanent roots - whether it’s a Grade II-listed Georgian manor house, a former vicarage, rectory, 16th century lodge or chocolate box cottage you are after, there is a varied mix of housing stock to choose from.
The Cotswolds country house market has an enduring popularity and appeal. We are seeing huge demand from buyers for good quality, well-priced property. Such homes are doing well and achieving good prices. Accessibility to London is key, with many looking for a family home rather than a weekend getaway, as at least one member of the family has to commute on an almost-daily basis. Efficient rail and road connections mean much of the Cotswolds is commutable, particularly as the rise in flexible working means a growing number of people do not have to make the journey five days a week. Hereford to London Paddington takes nearly three hours but Oxford Parkway into Marylebone is a very useful line, getting into London in just under an hour.
Great schooling is another feather in the Cotswolds’ cap. Kitebrook, a co-ed prep school in the north Cotswolds, which is also handy for Soho Farmhouse, is popular. For those brave enough to venture into Oxford and deal with the notorious rush-hour traffic on the school run, the Dragon – which offers a Prep and pre-Prep co-educational education - is good. For those who can’t face the traffic, St Hugh’s, a co-ed prep school near Faringdon, is an increasingly popular alternative.
Part of the appeal for many of those upping sticks and heading out of London is that it’s become a well-trodden path. It’s reassuring for these buyers that many of their friends have also made the move, lured to Chipping Norton and its environs by the attractions of the Daylesford farmshop in Kingham and Soho Farmhouse, which is a little bit of London in the Cotswolds.
If riding is your thing, the Cotswolds is an equestrian haven. If your passion is simply hacking out, there is beautiful countryside to tempt you or if it’s hunting you are spoilt for choice as the Heythrop, North Cotswold, Beaufort, Cotswold and VWH hunts are all based here. Some of the best equestrians are to be found in the Cotswolds, which is a great base to travel to competitions. And if spectating is more your thing, you can’t go wrong with the spectacular Festival of British Eventing at Gatcombe Park, Badminton and Blenheim horse trials.
Photo credit: Jo Rodgers