Best things about living in Highcliffe
PUBLISHED: 12:15 11 November 2015 | UPDATED: 12:15 11 November 2015
In recent years buyers have flocked to this pretty town by the sea which is renowned for its castle and great beaches, as well as its proximity to the New Forest, writes Andy Greeves
Situated to the east of Christchurch, Highcliffe-on-Sea is a small town with a population of around 8,000 people. As its name would suggest, the area boasts impressive views over the Solent towards the Isle of Wight.
The town, usually known simply as Highcliffe, sits on the Dorset-Hampshire border and is connected to both Christchurch and the New Forest via the A337. To the southwest lies Mudeford and its ever-popular Avon Beach. Avon Run Road runs along that stretch of coastline and has a magnificent vista. It is, unsurprisingly, one of the most expensive areas to buy property in the locality with the most recent sale there being a 3 bedroom, detached home which fetched £820,000 earlier this year.
Lymington Road (A337) is Highcliffe’s centre, with a great selection of shops, restaurants, cafes and pubs. In addition to good road connections to the New Forest, Southampton, Bournemouth/Poole and West Dorset, there is a railway station at nearby Hinton Admiral with direct services to London Waterloo.
Local schools include Highcliffe School, at Parkside, which offers secondary and sixth form education and has academy status. The overall pass rate at A level recently was 99% with 30% being A*/A grades. Meanwhile, 83% of GCSE students achieved grades at A* to C.
House prices in Highcliffe rose by 5% last year compared with 2013, which an average sale price of £335,249. The majority of sales in the area involved detached properties with an average price of £427,830 while semi-detached homes went for an average of £291,547. Flats sold for an average of £207,842 (pricing information from rightmove.co.uk).
Local attractions include Highcliffe Castle - an impressive, Grade I listed Victorian building which was once home to shop mogul Mr Selfridge. Now owned by Christchurch Council, its cliff top grounds are open to the public all year and its house and tea rooms are open from February to late December. Highcliffe has a vibrant community and lots of local events including the Highcliffe Christmas Carnival & Festive Gift Fair (highcliffecarnival.org.uk) on 12 December, while the popular Highcliffe Revival Food Festival returns on 21 May in 2016 (facebook.com/highclifferevival).
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