Although the cost of living in Taunton, UK is higher than some places up north, it is generally lower compared to nearby towns like Exeter and Bath. Taunton, UK is a big regional town located in Somerset, England. This town has more than 1,000 years of history; therefore historical monuments in the town are in plenty.
Is Taunton a good place to live? Taunton is a fairly affluent town in a great location. Once voted as one of the happiest towns in the UK, Taunton offers a great quality of life, plenty of things to do and a wide range of housing options.
Whether you are moving to Taunton because of a job offer or are just looking into possible locations in the UK to settle, you have landed on this blog because you have some questions.
- Does the town have good and bad neighbourhoods?
- How is the transport system?
- Is the education system good?
Read on to know more.
Is Taunton a good place to Live?
For those who are moving to Taunton soon, some of the lovely areas to live in include- Galmington, Blackbrook, Trull, Sherford, Staplegrove, Bishops Hull, Monkton Heathfield, Bishops Lydeard, Kingston St, Mary, Bradford on Tone, Oake, Norton Fitzwaren, Blagdon, North Curry, Corfe, and West Monkton.
Unfortunately, like most English towns, there are some crime-prone areas in Taunton such as Pryland, Ladymead, Priswood, Holway, Roman Road, Greenway Road, Chip Lane, and Rowbarton.
The education system in Taunton is generally good. Whether it is primary, secondary or university level, Taunton offers some high-quality educational establishments. Trull Church of England VA Primary School based in Church Road, Taunton has received a 5-star Ofsted judgement. Heathfield Community School in the north of Taunton is the leading secondary school in this town and it also has a 5-star Ofsted rating.
Parkfield Primary School is yet another leading primary school in Taunton that has received an “Outstanding” Ofsted rating. Another good secondary school is Taunton School which teaches International Baccalaureate and Mandarin. The Castle School also has a 5-star Ofsted judgement.
Taunton also has colleges such as Richard Huish College, Bridgewater and Taunton College, King’s College, Queen’s College, and Sky College. The University of Somerset is also based here.
Taunton has good transport links. The town is served by the M5 (Junction 25 and 26) motorway and other major roadways like A38 and A358. However, with the thriving local economy, road traffic is often a concern, therefore the Somerset County Council added new roads: the Third Way and the Northern Inner Distributor Road.
Residents also commute via rail, Taunton railway station is situated on the Bristol to Exeter railway line, the Reading to Taunton rail line, and Cross County Route. From this railway station, people from Taunton can travel to Bristol Temple Meads, Exeter St. David s and London Paddington.
The social scene in Taunton is very lively. The town boasts of a strong blend of national and diverse stores, eateries, hotels, and entertainment centres. There are also plenty of parks and historical monuments.
Is Taunton a good place to Work?
The United Kingdom Hydrographic Office (UKHO) is based in Taunton. UKHO is an organisation under the Ministry of Defence and is situated on Admiralty Way. This organisation employs about 1,100 people.
The first ever retail store of New Look, a multinational clothing supplier was opened in this town in 1969. This town is also well-known for its cider production.
Other recognisable companies that have offices in Taunton are CANDAC, Western Provident Association, Debenhams and Viridor. Furthermore, Defra, General Electric and Charity Commission for England and Wales also have their local offices based in Taunton.
Most people in the Somerset area are engaged by the following industries: Advanced Engineering and Aerospace, Food and Drink, Tourism, Creative Industry, Renewable Energy and Environmental Technology.
Taunton Deane experienced a low unemployment rate of 3.1% compared to the national average of 4% in 2018. The average gross salary of someone working in Taunton Deane is £29,700 which is lower than the national average of £36,600. Average gross salary of females is £25,700 while for males it is £32,400.
People who are just starting out in their careers can appreciate the numerous entry-level positions offered in Taunton. Underemployment is also very low in this area, with most residents being able to find full-time jobs.
Is Taunton a good place to buy a House?
The house prices in Taunton vary from one neighbourhood to the other. For those who can afford it, purchasing a home in one of Taunton’s expensive developments could be a really good investment.
The home prices in Taunton are slightly higher than the average for the whole Somerset area. In April 2019, average price for property in this town stood at £286,589. Flats in the area sold for an average price of £159,138 whereas terraced homes sold for £205, 078.
A single-bedroomed house goes for an average price of £117,500, a 3-bedroomed house has an average price of £247,574 and a 5-bed family house costs on average £517,455 as of April, 2019.
The average rent for a 1-bedroomed house is £480pcm and £1,151pcm for a 3-bedroom house. It is not easy to find a 5-bedroom home for rent in this town, but a 4-bedroom home for rent has an average rent charge of £1,600pcm.
Is Taunton a good place to Retire?
Taunton is an attractive place to retire. It has some very desirable neighbourhoods and good transport links. The health care in this town, which is usually a concern for the elderly, is of great quality.
There are many things to do in this town and there is an abundance of good retirement properties. For those who can afford them, Taunton offers some desirable residences for people aged over 55 years. It is easy to bargain for a discount, so it is well-worth considering Taunton for those moving to UK soon.
£225,000 is a realistic price for a 1-bedroomed flat in Bladgon Village, Taunton. A one-bed property in Wharf, Taunton can easily sell for £110,000. In Rowbarton Close, Taunton, a 3-bedroomed semi-detached house goes for about £161,750 and a 5-bed detached home in Monkton Heathfield, Taunton sells for around £297,000.
For those who prefer to rent, a retirement property in Leslie Avenue, Taunton demands a monthly rent of £546 per calendar month.
Is Taunton a good place to Visit?
A tidy and flourishing market town in England, Taunton has a newly remodelled, pedestrian-friendly town centre featuring Perpendicular Gothic Churches and Georgian houses. For those thinking of moving to UK or to just visit the country and are wondering where to go, Taunton is a lovely place that offers many tourist attractions all year round.
The Museum of Somerset is based in the inner ward of the Taunton Castle, which dates back to the beginning of the 12th century, though it has been heavily changed since that time. At the Museum of Somerset visitors get the chance to view exciting exhibits such as 5 mosaic panels gotten from the Low Ham Roman Villa and ancient coins from Frome Hoard. There are also fossils, toy collections, prehistoric pottery shards and curios.
Vivary Park, located on the Southern cusp of Taunton’s town centre, is a prime park with ornamental gardens. The 7.5 hectares space offers great family recreation. It is surrounded by the Sherford Stream and its name is derived from the Vivarium, a medieval fish farm. There is also a model railway line, miniature golf course, some tennis courts, children playgrounds and an 18-hole golf course for advanced players.
Another exciting place to visit in Taunton is St. Mary Magdalene, a classic wool church. The construction of this church was completed at the start of the 16th century and wealth was generated by the local trade of wool. This majestic Perpendicular Gothic church has the tallest tower amongst all churches in Somerset. The rest of the building has elements dating back to the 12th century.
Somerset Military Museum is a branch of the Museum of Somerset. This attraction showcases the history of County Regiments of Somerset. Visitors get to learn about the conflicts of the Somerset Light Infantry and juicy details about its deployment in Afghanistan as well as the Siege of Jellalabad in 1842. This museum also features a silver monument of Mumbai’s Gateway of India.
Originally a clothiers store run by Thomas and Joan Trowbridge, the Tudor Tavern is another sight to admire in Taunton. It is a 3-storey semi-timbered house with exceptional studwork. This building was completed in 1578, though some claim that the interior is older. Tudor Tavern was restored in 2003 by Caffe Nero.
Cricket lovers can go to the Somerset County Cricket Club in Taunton. For many years Somerset has been one of the leading first-class cricket teams in the UK. England’s Women’s cricket team also practices at this venue, and there are regular international matches.
Other exciting places in Taunton are: Church of St. James, Bridgewater and Taunton canal, Brewhouse Theatre, Bishops Lydeard Mill, Quantock Hills, Hestercombe Gardens, Fyne Court, French Weir Park and RSPB Swell Wood.
For those who plan to stay for several days, it is not a bad idea because Taunton offers plenty of accommodation. There are some fantastic bed-and-breakfast joints in the town centre and luxury hotel facilities in different parts of the town.
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.