The West Midlands city of Stoke-on-Trent (also known simply as ‘Stoke’) is located in Staffordshire, equidistant from Birmingham 45 miles to the south and Manchester to the north. Stoke started life as a small settlement in the Early Middle Ages and is referred to as The Potteries having risen to prominence as the centre of the UK’s pottery industry in the 17th century, where it has remained ever since.
The city is the largest conurbation in Staffordshire with around 260,000 residents and the Stoke-on-Trent we know today was created in the early 19th century as an amalgamation of six local towns; Stoke, Tunstall, Burslem, Hanley, Longton and Fenton.
Prospective homebuyers will appreciate the fantastic local amenities and attractions (hello Alton Towers!), scenic woodland and the stunning Staffordshire Peak District on the doorstep plus handy transport links with the rest of the UK. Competitive house prices are also a big draw.
The average property price in Stoke-on-Trent over the last 12 months was £146,665 making it one of the most affordable areas of Staffordshire. In comparison the county has an overall average price tag of £236,123, with popular locations Dunston Heath, Shenstone and Brocton reaching £850,000, £651,200, and £629,643, respectively. Property prices in Stoke are also much cheaper than the UK national average of £270,000.
Keen to say Ay up me duck to this popular West Midlands city? Read on to discover what else Stoke-on-Trent has to offer.
Stoke-on-Trent is easily accessible by road and rail and is well connected to other parts of the UK.
The M6 motorway between the Midlands and the Scottish border is within easy reach via the A500 and the A50 connects Stoke-on-Trent with the M1 between London and Leeds. Stoke-on-Trent train station offers high speed connections to Birmingham, Manchester, and London Euston alongside many local destinations on the West Coast Mainline. Crewe is a 21-minute journey, Stafford 15 minutes and Derby 48 minutes away. Local bus routes are also plentiful with long distance coach services offered by Megabus and National Express.
For journeys further afield, Manchester Airport is less than 45 minutes’ drive from Stoke-on-Trent and Birmingham International Airport and East Midlands Airport are within an hour’s drive of the city.
Schools and Education
Residents of Stoke-on-Trent are in the catchment area for a good range of primary, secondary, independent and SEND settings.
In terms of local primary schools, Waterside Primary School has been rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted and popular options St Mark’s CofE Primary School, Forest Park Primary School and Grove Academy have all been rated ‘good’.
For senior school children, there are currently 14 secondary schools locally including St Joseph’s College and special school Blackfriars Academy, both of which have been rated ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted. Stoke-on-Trent is also home to independent schools St Joseph’s Preparatory School, Phoenix U16 Independent School, Excellence Girls Academy, Nisai House Stoke and North Road Academy.
In terms of further education, City of Stoke-on-Trent Sixth Form College offers a range of A Level courses and the larger Stoke-on-Trent College offers an extensive roster of further and higher education courses from apprenticeships to foundation degrees.
For the younger members of the family, there are plenty of baby and toddler groups and highly rated nurseries available too.
Leisure and amenities
Stoke residents benefit from the city’s wide range of amenities and leisure activities located conveniently within the city.
The main retail centre is located in the Hanley region, with a broad selection of independent retailers and the extensive indoor market. There are also over 90 big-name high-street shops in The Potteries Centre such as Primark, Next and H&M alongside a cinema and numerous cafes and restaurants. The charming timber framed Trentham Shopping Village is also popular.
When it comes to eateries there is an extensive selection of options available in Stoke-on-Trent. Local favourites include The Rabbit Hole Tea Room, The Orange Tree, David’s Brasserie and The Quarter plus cosy pubs The Coachmakers Arms and the Bulls Head in Burslem which serve local Real Ales.
Stoke is also proud of its heritage, with the Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, The Gladstone Pottery Museum and Spode Museum Trust Heritage Centre displaying the area’s rich history in the pottery industry. Residents and visitor alike can have a go for themselves at World of Wedgewood and The Emma Bridgewater factory amongst others.
Outdoor lovers will also appreciate Central Forest Park, Hanley Park and Park Hall Country Park which offer family friendly scenic gardens, sports facilities and clubs, play areas and skate parks. The stunning gardens and monkey forest of the nearby 725-acre Trentham Estate and the Stoke-on-Trent Heritage Canoe Trail are also not to be missed and there are two areas of outstanding natural beauty within half an hour of the city too; Cannock Chase and the Peak District National Park.
The whole family will also enjoy the delights of the Alton Towers Resort from toddler friendly CBeebies Land to heart in your mouth rollercoasters Wickerman and Nemesis, all of which is only 16 miles from Stoke-on-Trent city centre.
Stoke-on-Trent has a jam-packed social calendar the whole year through, including The Big Feast outdoor arts festival, the Stoke-on-Trent Literary Festival, Camra Stoke Beer Festival and Winter Wonderland to name but a few!
Stoke’s Cultural Quarter also offers an impressive range of live entertainment and arts venues including The Regent Theatre and Victoria Hall for drama, dance, musicals and opera and the likes of Eleven, The Sugarmill and The Underground offer a great roster of live music.
Sport fans will appreciate the well-equipped Fenton Manor Sports Complex and Dimensions Leisure Centre which both offer plenty of fitness facilities and classes. Professional football teams Stoke City and Port Vale are also based locally.
For more information on local events and activities, check out the Visit Stoke website.
Safety and Crime
Like any UK town, Stoke-on-Trent does experience some crime from time to time.
Staffordshire Police have various neighbourhood policing teams in place across Stoke-on-Trent and the Safer Communities initiative is in place to improve the health, safety and wellbeing of communities across the city and the wider Staffordshire area.
Staffordshire Smart Alert also keeps the community in touch with the police, local authorities, Neighbourhood Watch, and other public organisations in relation to any crime, local engagement events, appeals, advice and general policing activity.
For the latest crime and safety updates in the Stoke-on-Trent area, you can visit the Your Area page of the Staffordshire Police website.
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