Living in Faringdon
What is life like in Faringdon?
Faringdon is a pretty market town in the west of Oxfordshire, packed with quaint cottages and beautiful townhouses crafted from Cotswold stone.
It is home to a large number of traditional pubs and pleasant green spaces, making it an extremely relaxing and pleasant place to live. Some of the cafes in the town have even won awards for the quality of the food they serve.
The area is just about commutable from London, while some residents work in nearer towns and cities such as Oxford, Swindon and Reading. Faringdon is popular with all age groups, from young families and professionals to the retired.
Some beautiful areas of countryside are within easy reach, so the town's residents tend to be in a good position to enjoy days out and spend time in idyllic surroundings.
Meaning 'fern covered hill', Faringdon was once famous as the home of a palace that belonged to the Anglo-Saxon kings of Wessex and later England.
A weekly market was granted to the town in 1218 and this is still held on a weekly basis today. The Archbishop of Dublin Thomas Cranley passed away in Faringdon in 1417 while on his way to London.
The parish church of All Saints is thought to date back to the 12th century and some parts of it survive from this period. Other features of the church were constructed in the 13th, 14th and 15th centuries.
One of the highlights of Faringdon is its Old Town Hall, which was previously known as the Market Hall. This dates back to the latter part of the 17th century or the early part of the 18th century and is undoubtedly the focal point of the town.
In more recent years, the opening of the A420 bypass in 1979 was a significant moment for Faringdon and its residents.
Professional wrestler Mark Haskins was born in Faringdon in 1988, while 20th century Canadian politician Martin Burrell also hails from the Oxfordshire town.
There is plenty going on in and near Faringdon, so even though it is a quiet and rural town nobody will ever be bored. One of the most popular events is the farmers' market, which takes place on the first Tuesday of every month.
A walk around the Church of All Saints, which was built in the 12th century and boasts a splendid pipe organ from 1390, is another appealing use of spare time, while Faringdon Folly is the last folly ever built in England and offers a range of entertainment options.
Following the Faringdon Historic Walk is great fun and takes in some of the town's most historic buildings, and the Iron Age hill fort at Badbury Hill and Woods is renowned for bluebell walks in April and May.
Sporty locals will be able to take advantage of the facilities on offer at Faringdon Leisure Centre, which include a swimming pool, a gym, a sauna and steam room, a spa pool and fitness classes and personal training timetables.
Looking slightly further afield, the 3,000-year-old chalk hill figure, the Uffington White Horse, is well worth seeing and Buscot Park is a magnificent stately home with a special art collection.
Although Faringdon is a small town, there are still a number of great places to stop for a bite to eat or a drink with friends.
La Bobina, a Spanish tapas and wine bar is the town's premier eatery, while Sudbury House and Restaurant 56 are other options. There are also plenty of Indian, Chinese and Thai restaurants and takeaways to cater for all needs.
Pubs in Faringdon tend to be pretty and traditional, so heading out for a spot of socialising is never a chore in the town. Some of the best pubs and bars include the Folly Inn, the Portwell Angel, the Red Lion, the Swan, the Old Crown Coaching Inn and the Cellar Bar.
There are many independent shops in Faringdon, giving the high street an authentic and historic feel. Butchers, bakeries and delicatessens are among the retail options on offer. The monthly farmers' market and the weekly standard market are an ideal chance to stock up on delicious local produce.
There is a good range of schools in operation in and around Faringdon, so parents need not be concerned that their children will not be educated to a high standard. Faringdon Infant, Faringdon Junior and Faringdon Community College are just some of the options available.
Elsewhere, mums and dads can choose from institutions such as John Blandy VC Primary School, Buckland CE VC Primary School and Watchfield Primary School.
Faringdon Health Centre and Faringdon Day Hospital are two of the premier healthcare facilities in the town and will help people with all manner of illnesses and injuries.
Faringdon is located on the A420, approximately halfway between Swindon and Oxford. It is within easy reach of both the M4 and the M40, while the M5 is only a little further away. This allows Faringdon residents to travel by car to London in around 90 minutes, as well as a host of other significant towns and cities.
Although Faringdon does not have its own train station, there are excellent services from both Swindon and Oxford, helping to keep the region in touch with all parts of southern England by rail.
It takes approximately 70 minutes to drive from Faringdon to Heathrow, the UK's busiest airport, so people in the town are never too far away from a link to the continent.