The crucial thing to check out when looking at Bucks village locations is the planned route of HS2. Lobbying against this project is very active across the county but if current plans are approved, this will cut a great gash right through the middle of the South Bucks landscape. if a house looks to be too good value, chances are it’s close to the planned route.
Beaconsfeld (32 mins marylebone) has two excellent state primaries in Butler’s Court and St mary’s as well as one of the largest junior sections of any rugby club in the country, with upwards of 600 children taking part at the weekends! the old town has a strong restaurant/coffee shop culture as well as what is reputed to be the oldest free house in England, the Royal Standard of England at Forty green, which serves great food. other good eating pubs are the ivy House at Chalfont St giles where you could have James Bond, otherwise known as Daniel Craig, as your neighbour and the Hit or miss at Penn Street, which also has an active church, popular combined infants and junior school and a small cricket club.
Gerrard’s Cross (26 mins marylebone), Chesham (underground to marylebone 60 mins) and Little Chalfont (30 mins marylebone) are all great areas to live with buzzing communities, excellent state and independent schools and easy access to London.
Great Missenden (46 mins marylebone), has a lovely ‘Chiltern village’ high street and close community feel. the excellent Roald Dahl museum (formerly his home) is a highlight. there are lots of lovely walks and great pubs to try incuding the nags Head, Cross Keys and Full moon. Watch the hot air balloons take off in the evenings at the Black Horse. neighbouring Prestwood has an excellent farm shop and ‘pick your own’ farm, as well as a micro-brewery. Chequers, the Prime minister’s residence, is just four miles down the road. For fun there’s the annual steam rally, and ‘Prestival’ music festival takes place every year. Prestwood, Little Kingshill and Hughenden state primaries are all highly regarded. the annual Kimble point-to-point on Easter Saturday brings families from county-wide together for picnics and a great day out. Bledlow Ridge, Lacey green and monks Risborough primary schools attained some of the best SAtS results in the county. The Lee/Lee Common village has an active family and community feel with a small Church of England infant School. Coleshill is another family-orientated village with a good primary school.
Amersham (39 mins to marylebone) is slightly less expensive, with equally good schools and good London access, while High Wycombe (35 mins marylebone) is more affordable still but with far less of a leafy green, rural feel. Just into Herts Berkhamsted (35 mins London Euston)
is increasingly popular thanks to its huge Waitrose, antique shops, coffee shops and dog walks galore on Ashridge, as well as a direct train to London Euston (35 mins).
To the north, Halton has an excellent indoor tennis centre where the Bucks County junior teams are based, as well as a well-regarded primary school. the RAF base means this is a good area for young families. Close by is the very pretty up-market market town of Wendover, though watch out for HS2 which runs very close to here. Black Park and Wendover Woods are both great for outdoor activities with go Ape high ropes courses and cycle trails.
For those seeking to get more for their money Tring (Euston 35 mins), just over the border into Herts, is great for those who enjoy the occasional pamper with a Champney’s Spa on the doorstep.