Stockton-on-Tees is a market town located in County Durham in North-East England. It is a town that I have visited regularly and an area that I have grown to love, mainly because of the natural landscape and because of the suburbs that all seem to have their own distinct identity. In 2015, it was voted as the fifth-best place to live in the country because it offered happiness, mainly through the beauty of the natural surroundings, alongside affordable house prices. I certainly believe that this is true and would move to Stockton-on-Tees in a heartbeat if my job would allow it.
Is Stockton-on Tees a good place to live? I would argue yes because of cheaper than average house prices, the sense of community and also the natural landscape. The centre of town and the suburbs are fairly urban but offers house prices which buck the national trend. Plus, you are not far from the North York Moors National Park and with great transport links it’s easy to get there.
Are you thinking of moving to the UK following a stint living abroad and looking for a great town to make your home? Stockton-on-Tees might just be the place for you. The area offers great work opportunities and plenty of social activities, what more could you need? Then, there are the beautiful surroundings and cheaper than average house prices, helping you buy a better house than you could anywhere else in the country, could you want any more? Let’s get this show on the road and demonstrate once and for all how Stockton-on-Tees could be the perfect location for you to set up your new home.
Is Stockton-on-Tees a Good Place to Live?
Stockton-on-Tees most definitely is a good place to live, let me show you why.
Best/Worst Places to Live
The house prices in Stockton-on-Tees are below the national average, which is one of the reasons why the area is great as a place to live, it might help you afford to buy a better home than elsewhere. The best places to live are the more rural locations because they are nestled in amongst the natural beauty of the area. Areas such as Butterwick, Little Stainton and Newham Grange are all beautiful rural areas on the outskirts of the town that are close to motorway junctions or train stations for easy transportation. As with any other town, areas closer to the centre of town can be more urbanised and have more problems in terms of crime and overcrowding. If that is something that does not appeal avoid areas such as Portrack, Primrose Hill or Bishopsgarth.
When it comes to crime figures, the levels of crime in Stockton-on-Tess is pretty much on a par to the national average. The area does not have any problems that aren’t also an issue elsewhere in the country.
Schools and Universities
There are plenty of great schools in Stockton-on-Tees, with some achieving ‘outstanding’ reviews from Ofsted. It is worth checking up on any school in areas that you are considering moving to, to see how they fared in their latest inspection. Durham University also has a campus in the town and there is a great college in the form of Stockton Riverside College which offers fantastic opportunities for development.
Stockton-on-Tees has great transport links that can help residents get to anywhere in the North East region and beyond. The A66 connects the town directly with Middlesborough whilst the A19 connects it to York and other towns and cities further south. There is also access to the A1(M) motorway just a few miles west of the town centre, which can take you pretty much anywhere that you want to go throughout the UK. In terms of public transport, many of the major suburbs of the town are connected with bus services that are operated by Stagecoach on Teesside and Arriva North East. There is also a rail station that offers direct services to nearby Thornaby.
The people of Stockton-on-Tees are extremely friendly and welcoming and there is a thriving community. You will find plenty of bars and restaurants in the town centre, that are all perfect for socialising and there are plenty of public services such as libraries, youth centres or community centres where gatherings can be organised. One of the best parts of the event calendar in Stockton-on-Tees is the Stockton Internation Riverside Festival. This sees plenty of comedy, circus, music and dance acts performing in the town over a 5 day period. This is an event that attracts plenty of visitors and is a highlight of the year in the town.
Is Stockton-on-Tees a Good Place to Work?
Stockton-on-Tees has an economy that is very much driven by the service industry. Teesdale Business Park, for instance, is an area that employs many residents of the town and in that area, you will find many serviced offices and call centres. Virgin Media has a call centre in the town and so are one of the major employers offering opportunities to local residents. There are also plans to develop and build more business parks in the town, which will bring in even more employers. There are plenty of jobs to be found in the area, although some do choose to travel further afield to Middlesbrough or Darlington to find work and the great transport links really do support this. According to statistics, the average salary in the area is £31,170 per annum, which is really on par with the national average.
Is Stockton-on-Tees a Good Place to Buy a House?
As already mentioned, house prices in Stockton-on-Tees are cheaper than the national average, which is an obvious plus when it comes to moving into the town. The current average house price in the area is £156,590. House prices are very much determined by the area in which they are located and the general rule is that the further from the centre of the town that the house is located and the more rural the area becomes, the more expensive the house becomes. As a guide the average price for a 1 bedroom property is around £86,000, 3 bedroom properties usually sell for around £127,000 and 5 bedroom homes go for around £320,000. If you are looking to rent, there are plenty of properties on the market and rental charges are often cheaper than the national average too. For a 1 bedroom property, you should expect to pay between £300-£400 per calendar month. Three bedroom homes often market at around £600 per calendar month and 5 bedroom properties are often listed for around £800 for a calendar month. In my opinion, Stockton-on-Tees is a great place to buy a home if you want a bit more property for your money.
Is Stockton-on-Tees a Good Place to Retire?
I am not near retirement age but it is my belief that Stockton-on-Tees would be a great place to retire too. I love the community feel of the town, the fact that there are so many activities to get involved with and that there is so much rural landscape just on the doorstep. There are areas too, that have an ageing population, which can help when it comes to finding somewhere to live among like-minded people. Butterwick, for instance, offers a great rural location with an older population as does Newham Grange, though this area is more suburban. The bus service is great too, which can help you get out and about without the car and the leisure facilities within the town are amazing. Your retirement really won’t be boring if you spend it in Stockton-on-Tees.
Is Stockton-on-Tees a Good Place to Visit?
Stockton-on-Tees is a great place to visit. There is so much culture to enjoy, with plenty of theatres and cinemas in the town for guests to visit. The ARC Theatre and Arts Centre is particularly amazing. This three-floor building offers a cinema, a 260-seat and a 100-seat theatre and exhibition spaces. I particularly enjoy a stroll along Yarm high-street, which was voted as Britain’s best by BBC Breakfast viewers. There’s a great range of shops and the cobbled stones give the area a quaint, historic feel. You can even go white water rafting in Stockton-on-Tees. Just head to the Tees Barrage International White Water Centre and spend some time paddling your way through the rapids. You can enjoy these flat-water or white-water courses all year round, you never would have expected that from Stockton-on-Tees, right? The town is also home to two amazing bridges that span the river Tees and really add to the aesthetics of the town. The Millenium Bridge is a footbridge that links the town with newer developments, including the campus of Durham University. The Infinity Bridge features two asymmetrical arches that really stand out and serves pedestrians and cyclists. The bridge is lit up at night and it really does look spectacular against the night sky. Stockton-on-Tees has so much going on. Whether you visit for a day or make it your permanent home, I guarantee you won’t regret it.
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.