As the property market rebounds in London and with the shift to hybrid or working from home, living in a suburban city outside the capital becomes more and more appealing.
This is especially the case for towns like Northampton, where the average house price is Â£ 250,870 and a one hour train ride will get you to London Euston.
In fact, Northampton has been named one of the cheapest suburban towns in London, according to estate agents at Martin & Co.
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Here’s a glimpse of the East Midlands town which has a bustling center and a rich history – from Princess Diana’s resting place to one of England’s only four Norman Round Churches.
For some, the most notable thing about Northampton will be their connection to Princess Diana.
The Spencer family have called the neighboring stately home and Althorp estate for a few years now, and now Diana is buried there.
If you wish to visit on your own, the house and grounds are open to the public for a few weeks in the summer.
Northampton also marks Diana’s presence in the area with a memorial located in the neo-Gothic Guildhall.
But Northampton’s rich history extends beyond Princess Diana.
Other royal family ties include Castle Ashby House, which Queen Elizabeth I visited in 1600. Today the gardens are open to the public.
And then there’s Cottesbrooke Hall and Gardens, a country house built in the early 1700s.
The city also has important religious ties.
Northampton is home to one of England’s four Norman round churches – the Holy Sepulcher – dating from around 1100.
There is also the Abbey of Delapre, a 10th century monastery.
When it comes to the town’s history, signs of civilization date back to the Neolithic and Bronze Age, with an Iron Age fort found in Hunsbury.
Fast forward a few years to the 12th and 13th centuries, and the city was an occasional royal residence and hosted Parliament.
During the Victorian era, Northampton’s selling point shifted from royal to industrial with the rise of the city’s shoe industry.
This slowed down in the 1980s due to competition from cheap imports from overseas.
If shoes are your thing, the Northampton Museum and Art Gallery is home to the world’s largest shoe collection and exhibits of shoe-making instruments from days gone by.
History and country houses aside, Northampton is full of cafes, restaurants and bars to suit all tastes, as well as extensive green spaces including Abington Park and Sywell Country Park.
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