Described by poet Matthew Arnold as “the city of dreaming spires”, Oxford is a place of real significant beauty. With many fine examples of every English architectural style since the late Saxon period, its compact city centre is positively bursting with history.
Its population of around 160,000 places it as the 52nd largest city in the UK, and among the fastest growing and most ethnically diverse. The economy in Oxford is made up of industries including motor manufacturing, publishing, education, and a growing number of IT and science-based businesses.
Of course, the city is renowned the world over as the home of the University of Oxford, the oldest university in the English-speaking world. It enjoys a lively nightlife, great museums, a vibrant performing arts scene and an abundance of reasonably priced restaurants.
Location, Location, Location
Renting in Oxford puts you (sort of) within commuting distance of London, with the train taking just under an hour to arrive at Paddington station. Living here also places you close to the fresh air and outstanding natural beauty of the Cotswolds.
And with its quintessentially English riverside pubs and its plethora of theatres and museums, this is cultured living at its finest. So whether it’s the sought after suburb or the quaint village community you’re after, Oxford has you covered.
Home of a Shark Attack
If you’re looking for a residential area brimming with character, then look no further than Headington. Separated by the London Road into the ‘old’ and ‘new’ areas, this leafy suburb overlooks the Thames Valley and is within easy reach of the city centre.
With a wide range of cafes, restaurants, pubs, and shops, Headington is well served for amenities, and Oxford’s major hospitals - the Churchill and the John Radcliffe - are located here too.
Yet its most famous modern landmark is undoubtedly The Headington Shark. A fibreglass sculpture depicting a shark landing head first into the roof of a house, it was created by John Buckley for local broadcaster Bill Heine in 1986.
With a number of pleasant green spaces, handy transport connections, and a few well-performing schools, Headington is ideally placed for professionals seeking easy access to the city, and for young families looking for a quaint and quiet place to raise their children.
Outside the City Wall
If you were to pitch up in Jericho (just outside the historic city wall) in the 18th or 19th century, you wouldn’t want to hang about. Lacking even the most basic drainage, this part of Oxford was a postcard of squalor. Now, you’ll be glad to know, things are different. Thanks to its convenient location close to the city centre, it has grown in popularity with young professionals.
Famed for appearing in the first ever episode of Inspector Morse, the vibrant and bohemian atmosphere and warm community spirit perhaps places it at odds with John Thaw’s iconic detective series.
Jericho is home to the offices of the Oxford University Press which run along Walton Street, and is served by a large local primary school, St Barnabas.
It’s a lively little suburb during the day, and even livelier at night thanks to its very cool arthouse cinema, the legendary cocktails at Freud’s and the wealth of restaurants serving everything from seafood to French & Italian cuisine.
Making the move to Oxford? You have to check out Headington and Jericho.
Register today to find your ideal home!
Do you have any tips for renting and living in Oxford? Tell us on Twitter.