Bradford City is located in West Yorkshire, within an hour’s drive to Manchester and Leeds. The city lies in the slopes of the Pennine mountains where it started as a hub for textile manufacturing and rose to become one of the most prominent cities in the UK. Today, Bradford is Curry Capital of Britain and a UNESCO City of Film. If you are planning on moving to the UK, Bradford is well worth considering.
Is Bradford a good place to live? Bradford is a town on the rise. It’s just a few kilometres from Leeds and Manchester, is known for having some of the best curries in the United Kingdom, and it’s a cultural melting pot. The city offers affordable housing, good schools, and a great outdoor scene, making it an appealing choice for families too.
Bradford’s strategic location between two major cities means that it can act as an inexpensive commuter base.
The city of Bradford may have an appalling reputation nationally, but don’t believe a word of it. According to a recent survey published by the Office of National Statistics survey, Bradford residents have the highest levels of life satisfaction in West Yorkshire, which is higher than the regional and national averages. Are you considering moving to the UK? Well, here’s everything you need to know about the city of Bradford, including schools, transport, as well as best and worst neighbourhoods.
Is Bradford a Good Place to Live?
If you are looking for a commuter city to settle in, Bradford makes a great choice. For starters, houses are a lot cheaper in Bradford than in neighbouring areas. On this side of the Pennines, you can afford a sturdy stone-built Victorian villa for about £150,000. In fact, a significant portion of Bradford’s population lives there solely because they can’t afford to live in Leeds. On top of the cheap property prices, the city also offers a decent quality of life.
With a dynamic young population, globally successful businesses, and a world-class cultural offer, moving to Bradford is a risk worth taking. Bradford also boasts of having a family-friendly city centre with an award-winning city park; a great place to raise a family. Most of the schools have a good Ofsted rating. The town centre is full of lovely historic features and has plenty of green spaces too. The city’s caramel coloured buildings look like they’ve been dumped in a bowl of green countryside.
Most of the areas in the city are nice and rural. Areas such as Wilsden, Oakenshaw, and Haworth give you lovely countryside feel. If you’re into climbing, cycling, running, and other outdoor activities you’ll love living in this city. The city is well connected with a reliable transport system by rail, road, and air. The city centre’s transport connections and strategic location — easy access to the Leeds/Bradford airport — make it one of the best neighbourhoods in the area.
Outside of the city centre, the local bus network connects the town centre to the remote suburbs. There are bus links to places within and outside of the city including Wakefield, Huddersfield, and Leeds. On top of all that, Bradford is a safe city. The city is actually one of the safest cities in the UK despite its bad reputation. According to the results of a poll conducted by YouGov, Bradford is the second most peaceful out of the UK’s top ten cities.
People massively overestimate the ‘danger’ in Bradford. Nearly all the key indicators of danger are below the UK average. So, why do people think that Bradford is dangerous?
When it comes to social life, Bradford is one of the liveliest places to live in the UK. The city is a big, silly cultural melting pot. Many of the residents come from different parts of the world, filling the city with colourful characters with mad stories. Bradford hasn’t always been a tolerant and welcoming city, but in recent years, authorities have been working very hard to get the integration thing right. You’ll fit right in unless you are, you know…a bigot.
Is Bradford a Good Place to Work?
One of the areas where Bradford City isn’t performing as well as it should is employment. On 22nd January 2019, the Office for National Statistics published the most recent unemployment figures in the city. The data shows that more than 12,000 were claiming unemployment benefit as of December 2018. According to the City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council, Bradford has the highest unemployment rate for the Leeds City Region at 3.7%.
The last time unemployment was this high in Bradford was in 2015. Since February 2015, the city’s unemployment rate fell and stabilised at between 2.6% and 2.9% until it started to rise in September 2018. City authorities are working hard to reverse the situation. Bradford’s Department for Work and Pensions is continually working with employers and partners in different sectors of the economy to find opportunities for the population.
That being said, there’s still a lot of employment opportunities in the city. Major employers include the University of Bradford, Provident Financial, the National Health Service (NHS), and Bradford Council. The most popular industries in the city are Health Care, Manufacturing, and Education. There are plenty of well-compensated entry-level positions with most of the major employers in the city of Bradford. According to data from PayScale, the average salary in Bradford district is £20,990.
Is Bradford a Good Place to Buy A House?
As stated earlier, Bradford has some of the cheapest property prices in the country. House prices are significantly lower compared to the neighbouring Leeds and Manchester. As of March 2019, the average price for property in Bradford stood at £137,393. This is a rise of about 2.17% since a year ago. Property prices have remained relatively stable in Bradford for the last three months. When it comes to specific property types, the price of buying a flat in Bradford averages at £109,646.
If you want to buy a terraced house in this city, you’ll have to part with about £102,030, which is a very fair rate. One of the best places to buy a house in Bradford is the city centre. Most of the properties that are up for sale in the city centre consist of stone-built terraces and Victorian conversions. Most of the houses are 2-bedrooms with a high ceiling and featuring a fireplace. Roads such as Alexandra Street, Pannal Street, Percival Street, and Lidget Place are tightly knit with rows of Yorkshire stone terraces.
Look to the city’s suburbs for bigger homes. Visit areas such as Merton Road and Laisteridge Lane for more substantial houses with arched doorways, bay windows, and converted lofts. The suburbs of Bradford are full of family houses if that’s what you are looking for. These include Clayton, Eccleshill, and Allerton. There’s plenty of 3-5 bedroomed standalone properties as well as semi-detached houses to choose from. There aren’t many bad neighbourhoods in Bradford per se; all neighbourhoods are fairly safe, rich or poor.
Is Bradford a Good Place to Retire?
If you are looking for a city to retire on a tight budget, Bradford is a great destination. The largely commuter city has great connections, desirable neighbourhoods, and is affordable to live in — very important when you are working with a small budget. With some of the cheapest housing prices in the country, accessible health care for seniors, and high availability of retirement properties, Bradford is a good place to invest in a retirement home.
If you’re looking for a single-bedroomed house in Bradford, you can expect to pay in the region of £150,000 while a three-bedroomed property goes for around £300,000. A single bedroom flat will set you back around £100,000 and can be a great retirement home. Usually, older buyers will get a discount when buying a home in Bradford. Overall, moving to city name (Bradford) is a great option for retirees looking for a great place to settle and enjoy their free time.
Is Bradford a Good Place to Visit?
Beautifully sitting in the foothills of the Pennines, Bradford is invigorated with fresh air and natural scenic beauty. The city is one of the best places to visit in the West Yorkshire area. This cultural melting pot offers a mix of distinctive experiences for residents and tourists alike. Visit Bradford to explore the city’s notable UNESCO sites, traditional culture, stunning countryside, and fascinating heritage.
Some of Bradford’s popular attractions include Saltaire Village, Bradford Industrial Museum, Roberts Park, National Science and Media Museum, and the Alhambra Theatre. There are plenty of family activities to partake when visiting Bradford. For instance, tour the Bingley Five-Rise Lock, a stairway lock on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal of Bingley, or explore this City of Film for a thrilling experience for you and your family.
About the author: Marta Kovachek is the author of this article. She graduated from the University of Chicago with a master’s degree in Economics. Marta enjoys writing about the current economic situation and loves helping our readers to find their next "destination". From places to live to complex social and economic topics, we always enjoy Marta's work. Please contact us in case of any questions.