About the Area
Situated within close proximity to commuter links such as the M27 and A36, Romsey lies on the east bank of the River Test at the lower end of the Test Valley, with the New Forest to the South West, the ancient city of Winchester to the East and the major city and port of Southampton to the South. Romsey retains its regular street market as well as a thriving town centre with shops, restaurants, public houses, leisure facilities and historical sites including Broadlands House.
At the centre of Romsey is the market place, town hall and the stunning Abbey. Steeped in history from its Saxon roots and centred upon its imposing and prepossessing abbey, Romsey is the loveliest of market towns which has retained its intrinsic ‘village’ charm despite the modern onslaught of new housing requirements which has affected the integrity of many other towns and villages. Its sophisticated eateries, boutique shopping and comfortable social life holds appeal for a wide range prospective purchases from retirement to families looking for a safe and convenient lifestyle for their children. This is enhanced by its wealth of excellent local schooling within both the state and private sectors, which attracts many families to the area. Saturday morning strolls around Romsey with it’s variety of delicatessens and coffee shops serving gourmet breakfasts is an absolute treat.
The Test Valley villages surrounding the town are also delightful, varied in their stature and amenities, yet all synonymously picturesque and attractive, offering a diverse range of architecture from pretty, small farm cottages, to impressive manor homes and estates. Its generic appeal as a special place to live creates it’s own microclimate which remains more resilient to the political and economic environment. Having settled in Romsey for the last 20 years, my own testament to this Hampshire haven is that I would never wish to move from its captivating allure. It is as vibrant as it is tranquil, enchantingly parochial yet commuter accessible but above all I have experienced the kindest and well-spirited community which has afforded me such a wonderful network of friends.
Ampfield is ideally situated with Romsey 3 miles to the west, Winchester 7 miles to the east and the commercial centre of Southampton 9 miles to the south. Local schooling is excellent, within catchment to both Ampfield and Romsey schools with much private sector choice, the closest being the well regarded Stroud Preparatory School and Hampshire Collegiate. The market town of Romsey provides excellent everyday amenities and leisure facilities with well known beautiful woodland walks through the Test Valley on the doorstep. There is a bus which runs twice an hour to Winchester and Romsey and also a school bus to Kings School, King Edwards School, Peter Symonds College and Barton Peveril College. Immediate facilities within Ampfield include The White Horse public house, Keats restaurant, Ampfield Golf Course and its restaurant, village hall and café with its monthly market cricket ground and new pavilion and the well regarded C of E Primary School.
Awbridge is a particularly popular Test Valley village which originally comprised a small collection of hamlets and now offers a delightful community spirit centred upon the pretty All Saints Church, the excellent primary school and busy village hall. Ideal for commuters with its easy access to Southampton, Salisbury and Winchester it is also convenient to the New Forest and is just approximately three miles away from the market town of Romsey where more comprehensive amenities can be found. There is also a railway station in Dunbridge (some two miles away) which provides a local service to Salisbury, Southampton, Eastleigh and Portsmouth.
Pronounced A Bridge (with a silent ‘w’) there are a host of clubs and activities conducted at the village hall including bridge, bowls, keep fit and play groups. The striking Saxon Stanbridge Manor is reputed to have been the site of the home of the Saxon King Ethelwulf in 806-858AD who was the father of King Alfred. It is now central to a stunning retirement village hosting many amenities available to the public including restaurant, café, swimming pool and fitness centre.
Braishfield is one of the most highly sought after country villages in the Romsey area offering excellent traditional amenities including a well regarded village school, hall, church and unusually, a choice of public houses. Located just three miles north of the market town of Romsey with its more comprehensive amenities, Braishfield enjoys a strong community spirit and well supported local facilities making it a most pleasant village to live. Braishfield still fulfils all aspects of village life from its delightful pantry store stocking the essentials through to sophisticated delicatessen to its successful football club formed in 1907 and one of the oldest strictly amateur clubs in England. Famed by the filming of Worzel Gummage, Braishfield offers a friendly and fully inclusive, high achieving school, a village hall, cricket club and choice of village pubs. Its active village diary is well promoted to the residents via its organised and informative community website. A lovey place to live!
Kimbridge is a small serene village offering traditional country pleasures including one of the best local fishing waters, a well regarded farm shop and excellent restaurant and tea rooms with two local pubs within walking distance. Its picturesque countryside and wonderful walks coupled with its proximity to Romsey make it one of the premier addresses in the area. Local schooling for all ages is excellent in both the private and state sectors and commuting is ideal with the train station at Dunbridge just a couple of miles away and easy road access to Winchester.
Lockerley is an attractive compilation of several greens creating a diverse village which despite its smaller population has a surprising amount going on with around 35 groups, societies and activities ranging from bellringing to bridge and car mechanics. The village enjoys an excellent local school and shop and strong sense of community. Positioned approx. 5 miles west of the market town of Romsey, on the southern bank of the River Dun, there is a train station at the neighbouring villages of Dunbridge and West Dean along with a local pub. Butts Green hosts the majority of the amenities including the excellent village school and active community hall and derived its name from Tudor times when able-bodied men of the village were required to spend an hour each Sunday practicing archery. The target was known as the “butt”. Lockerley Green hosts the village stores and post office and with Top Green offering some aesthetically pleasing architecture with picturesque surrounding scenery.
The charming neighbouring villages of Michelmersh and Timsbury offer quintessential village life, just 3 miles North of Romsey with its stunning historic Abbey, boutique shopping, restaurants and coffee shops. The villages are an ideal location for those who require good commuter access whilst enjoying village life. They are surrounded by serene countryside offering residents beautiful country walks and a host of local amenities including a church, village hall, sports field and cricket club with two well attended local pubs. The nearby cultural city of Winchester offers a more comprehensive range of amenities and the larger commercial centre of Southampton with its indoor shopping centre and excellent transport links is also easily reachable via major road links.
Newtown Road is in the parish of Awbridge and is a quiet country lane connecting the two popular villages of Awbridge and Sherfield English enjoying the benefit of being accessible to both their wealth’s of traditional amenities. Awbridge is a particularly popular Test Valley village which originally comprised a small collection of hamlets and now offers a delightful community spirit centred upon the pretty All Saints Church, the excellent primary school and busy village hall. Ideal for commuters with its easy access to Southampton, Salisbury and Winchester it is also convenient to the New forest and is just approximately three miles away from the market town of Romsey where more comprehensive amenities can be found. There is also a railway station in Dunbridge (some two miles away) which provides a local service to Salisbury, Southampton, Eastleigh and Portsmouth.
Probably one of the least known villages in the area, Plaitford is a small community on the fringes of the Hampshire border offering stunning scenery, and a delightful eclectic mix of gorgeous homes. For a small village, it is blessed with amenities that larger villages would be envious of. The village hall is exceptional, hosting many activities from Yoga to auctions and ST. Peters Church is a small picturesque 13th century church standing alone and close to the river Blackwater. It is served by the Shoe Inn on the A36, popular with locals and enjoying its own connection to the New Forest via Plaitford Common, ideal for dog walking and riding.
It’s excellent road access via the A36 and A27 make it a popular destination with commuters and more recently it has become famous for hosting a well renowned annual folk festival over 4 days in July.
Sherfield English is a small, popular village with an excellent community spirit just a short drive from the market town of Romsey and nestled around a two mile stretch of the A27. For its size it enjoys a surprising array of traditional amenities, benefitting from a thriving and popular public house, The Hatchet, which is frequented by many of the locals from neighbouring villages as well as Sherfield English. It is also served by an excellent local shop and Post Office, choice of tea rooms and village hall that hosts a wide variety of activities and events which all residents are encouraged to join in. Sporting activities are prevalent with an impressive recreation ground and new pavilion which is the envy of every village in the Test Valley.
Sherfield English is still quite largely a farming community with most of its houses, cottages and isolated farms scattered along narrow leafy lanes, unseen by those who pass through on the main road. The active church, St Leonards, houses some fine art nouveau style stained glass windows and a particularly fine set of bells. The impressive pavilion and recreation ground serve the football, bowls, croquet, tennis and cricket clubs as well as rounders which is played as an annual competitive but good humoured tournament.
Other amenities in the village also include Glebe Garage, Gilberts Nursery and Team Rooms, Dandy’s Ford Fishery and Team Room. The Hatchet public house is renowned for its real ales and home cooked food and is a traditional child and dog friendly public house well frequented by locals. Local primary schools are in Awbridge and Whiteparish and there are school buses for Romsey and the Salisbury Grammar Schools and a choice of private education institutions.
The highly desirable village of Shootash lies within the Test Valley parish and is ideally located within walking distance of a network of country paths to local villages, public houses and to the market town of Romsey. There are convenient road links via the A27 to Salisbury and junction 2 of the M27 is within a five minute drive providing access to Winchester, Southampton and London. Parkway Station is within a 20 minute drive and provides direct train links to London. The popular town of Romsey is situated approximately two and half miles away offering a host of amenities and varied shopping outlets.
As one of the larger villages in the Test Valley, Wellow has it all; a wealth of traditional amenities, excellent recreational facilities, a vibrant village hall and highly regarded schooling. Straddling the River Blackwater, the villages of East and West Wellow lie between two major roads, the A27 to the North and the A36 to the south where it connects to the New Forest at Canada Common. This facilitates excellent commuting but also easy access to the beautiful Forest countryside for dog walking, cycling and riding. The villages enjoy diverse yet comprehensive amenities including a supermarket, butchers, hairdressers, pharmacy and traditional DIY store along with Carlo’s Tea Rooms, renowned for their homemade ice cream.
The village school is highly regarded and is also within catchment for Mountbatten Secondary School and East Wellow is also home to the Hampshire Collegiate Private School. The sporting facilities are significant with busy cricket, football and tennis clubs as well as being served by two local pubs, the Red Rover and The Rockingham Arms. Home to around 3000 people, Wellow is divided into East and West, originally via the River Blackwater and although offer their own delights, they share the 15th Century Parish Church of St Margaret’s of Antioch, the oldest surviving building in Wellow which is the burial site of Florence Nightingale, Wellow’s most famous celebrity.
Whiteparish is close to the New Forest National Park, within easy reach of the excellent village amenities which include the highly reputable Whiteparish Primary School, choice of public houses, village store and doctors surgery. Whiteparish enjoys excellent commuter access, equidistant to Romsey and Salisbury and convenient to Southampton, whilst benefitting from being catchment of the highly regarded Salisbury grammar schools. Southampton Parkway Station, providing direct train links to London, and Southampton airport are both within approximately a 20 minute drive.