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Why you should move to Birkdale

PUBLISHED: 13:03 28 December 2009 | UPDATED: 16:09 20 February 2013

BIRKDALE is most famous for its golf club. Every few years all eyes turn towards the Southport district for The Open Championship.

BIRKDALE is most famous for its golf club. Every few years all eyes turn towards the Southport district for The Open Championship.

However, there is far more to the wealthy suburb than meets the eye. As well as being home to well-known footballers playing with Lancashire teams, Birkdale was also the birthplace of controversial English historian, AJP Taylor.

Shoreside Birkdale may be the place for millionaires to wind down but just down the road in Birkdale Village, as it is still known, there is a gem of a place with a wealth of family-run shops reminiscent of times before supermarkets and chain stores. The village, split by the Southport- Liverpool railway line, features many shops tucked below Victorian canopies for you to browse. Try Broughs of Birkdale for some award-winning sausages, bread galore at The Swiss Patisserie or an homage to fromage at the Birkdale Cheese Centre.

Property prices have risen in general in the last five years but surprisingly, despite large price tags on many of the area's homes, property prices have consistently remained a minimum of 5000 below the national average.

Land Registry figures show in recent years that you can get a home for an average of 180,000. However many of the area's detached properties, particularly those situated on in the Shoreside Birkdale region, come in at well over 500,000 with a few tipping the million pound mark and more. There are plenty of resale homes to choose from that ooze character. New homes are also available, including in Trafalgar Road where a two bedroom apartment can cost you more than 350,000. It is apartments, spurred on by Birkdale's popularity, that have enjoyed the largest price gain with around a 100,000 increase in the costs of a flat in the past year. In some cases, it is more expensive to buy a flat than a terraced or semi-detached.

Some of these apartments are on sites that were once elegant Victorian residences. However, many of the houses that sprung up on the reclaimed sandhills 150 years ago have survived along with several Victorian and Edwardian houses that still provide a beautiful home for many families. There are also some distinctive properties, the most famous probably being the Round House, with its white walls overlooking the Royal Birkdale Golf Club.

Birkdale certainly has many charms so give it a look before buying your next home.

FACT FILE

Property prices: According to the latest figures from the Land Registry, the average price of a detached home in Birkdale is about 270,000. Semi-detached homes can be bought for about 160,000. Terraced homes on average go for around 155,000 with apartment prices skyrocketing over the past few years to more than 230,000

Ups: Pleasant location, good schools, lots to do and good shops

Downs: A little bit out of the way and expensive properties make Birkdale unsuitable for those with a more restricted budget.

Schools: Birkdale Primary School, 01704 567516; Birkdale High School, 01704 577253; Birkdale School for H I Children, 01704 567220; Christ the King Catholic High School, 01704 565121; St Teresa's RC Infant and Nursery School, 01704 567528; Our Lady of Lourdes RC Primary School, 01704 568375; Farnborough Road Junior School, 01704 577625

Transport: Birkdale Railway Station is easily accessible just off Liverpool road with regular rail services through to Liverpool and Southport every 15 minutes from Monday to Saturday and every 30 minutes on Sunday. Blackpool International Airport is less than ten miles away but Liverpool John Lennon Airport and Manchester Airport are within a reasonable distance

Commuting: Southport, Preston and Liverpool are within easy reach of Birkdale with the outer areas of Cheshire and Manchester also accessible by the nearby M6.

Shops: Lucky you if you live in Birkdale. You can browse around the many family run shops and stores that offer the opportunity to get a one off or some tasty local produce.

Restaurants/bars: Whether you like a good pint or a drink in a trendy wine bar you can be accommodated in Birkdale. The Fishermen's Rest pub is situated on the former site of the Birkdale Palace Hotel, try Crystals Restaurant and Bar for good food and drink or a modern European restaurant, Michael's.

Weekend fun: Lots to do and lots to choose from. Take a trip along the way to Southport where there is plenty to keep you entertained from shops to a new water park or a walk along the pier - the second longest in Britain. Go the other way from Birkdale and you reach Formby where you can visit the Red Squirrel Nature Reserve. If you want to stay closer to home, you can take a walk along the dunes at Birkdale. Move in time for 2008 and you will also get to see some of the golfing world's biggest stars at the Royal Birkdale Golf Club.

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