3 reasons why you should move to Neston
PUBLISHED: 00:00 21 January 2020
Head to the very edge of Cheshire to find the county's best kept secret, where the old is embracing the new
Now, sleepy countryside market towns don't normally win national awards for their unique brunch spots. But Neston isn't following the rules.
In the last few years, the Cheshire/Wirral border town has had the feel of a place that is absolutely on the up, quietly beavering away to rival local hotspots with more glamorous reputations like Heswall and West Kirby.
Slowly, the more tired of Neston's town centre has made way for independent shops and cafés. The old-school weekly outdoor market has kept its heart but also opened up its doors to more unexpected traders.
There is a buzz about the town, and that's not just because the residents are fuelled on espressos from one of the impressive independent coffee shops.
A town by name, Neston feels more like a village, with a calendar of annual events that are on every local's must-attend list as well as clubs that appeal across generations. Stroll through the centre of town and you'll see all of those people stopping to chat.
They'll likely have walking boots on and dogs chomping at the bit to get going on walks they won't have to wait long for because, wherever you are in Neston, you're never far from green space.
City-style Food Hub
The monopoly on foodie hot-spots has long since expanded beyond the cities, but it's still unusual to find it booming to such an extent in a town the size of Neston.
The giant sparkly whopper of a jewel in the crown is Real Food Kitchen, recently voted one of the best brunch spots in the country in the Mail On Sunday.
Beyond Real Food Kitchen, the Elephant Collective, which set the standard for the new wave of restaurants in the town, is a Neston behemoth, now with three outlets in the area, and itself an award-winner.
The newly taken-over Blue Bicycle is a great lunch stop and, squirreled behind the lovely card and gift shop, Paisley Grey is a hidden hotspot with an encyclopaedic tea collection.
There are strong stalwarts too. Try Sang Jun for a classic Thai, a teatime special at Greek Kri Kri or a stroll around the weekly market that's been running in Neston since 1728, to sample anything from cheese to pesto.
The Great Outdoors
There aren't many places in the country where you get beautiful countryside and windswept coast in such close proximity, and it's a special combination.
With the Dee Estuary on one side of Neston, the saltmarsh that replaced a once busy seaside promenade is now an RSPB reserve that extends all the way from close neighbour Parkgate to local beauty spot Burton Mere.
And if the ice-cream and fish-and-chip coastal vibe at Parkgate isn't enough, take the kids' buckets and spades and head the few miles up the coast to Thurstaston for some 'real' beach action.
Many Neston locals also have membership at the beautiful Ness Gardens and wherever you are in Neston, you're never more than a few minutes from a sneaky little cut through to the Wirral Way, a twelve-mile disused railway that's morphed into the perfect coastal path.
It's a good job it is such an active place; there is all of that market cheese to burn off…
Bag a Property
Whether you want a heritage plaque outside your front door or the modernity of floor-to-ceiling glass, Neston is still a relatively affordable Right Move addict's dream.
And if you fancy it, the buzz around the town means that now's the time to get booking those viewings.
'The town centre has experienced a huge resurgence in recent years, with many local businesses moving in,' says Steve Nelson, managing director of Constables Estate Agents. 'It's now awash with independent coffee shops, cafés and restaurants.
'Sports are well-catered for in the area too. The Neston Club is one of the premier amateur sporting facilities in the North West, with facilities including cricket pitches, tennis courts, hockey pitches, squash courts and a bowling green. Royal Liverpool Golf Club is less than 10 miles away and there is sailing in West Kirby and Hoylake.
'Neston is a hidden gem and with so much to do on the doorstep you will never be short of entertainment and inspiration.'
Why I moved here
After 14 years in London we wanted something different and stumbled upon Neston. It feels rare to get countryside and coast. Plus with a good and constantly growing foodie scene, we still get our hit of city-type brunches.
Why I've stayed here
My husband and I loved growing up here and wanted the same experience for our children. There are gorgeous beaches, great cities nearby, beautiful countryside and it is close to one of the world's best zoos. The people are so friendly, we love feeling part of a community.