Properties for sale in Lancashire

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Lancashire Area Guide

Downham Church, Lancashire Image courtesy of Flickr user Inside Lancashire

Lancashire, the "red rose county" in the North West of England is steeped in history. From the War of the Roses with Yorkshire to real Lancashire "hot pot", it is one of England's most well-known counties. Before boundary changes in 1978, the county of Lancashire included the areas now known as Merseyside and Greater Manchester. However it is still very common for people, especially in Greater Manchester, to refer to themselves as "Lancastrians". The modern-day county council area of Lancashire is limited to the north-western area of the "ceremonial county"; from Lancaster in the North, to West Lancashire in the west and Pendle in the east.

Demographics

According to the 2011 census, the Lancashire wider area (which includes the now unitary authorities of Blackpool and Blackburn with Darwen) comprised of 1,460,893 people, which represented a 3.3% increase on the 2001 figures. The cities of Preston and Lancaster are the biggest settlements in the Lancashire local authority area, the former being the administrative centre of the county council and the latter being the traditional county town of the ceremonial county. Both Blackpool and Blackburn are bigger than Preston and Lancaster however, and as stand-alone unitary authorities, they are no longer under the control of Lancashire county council.

Average house prices in Lancashire vary from town to town. Burnley, for example, has the second lowest average house price in all of England and Wales (£92,238), while the Ribble Valley has a much higher average house price of £213,490. However, on the whole Lancashire's house prices are much lower than the national average, making it a much more affordable place to live.

Lancashire is an ethnically diverse area. On average, the population is 90% white British and 10% made up of ethnic minorities, the vast majority of whom are Asian or British Asian.

Education

In the Lancashire County Council area there are a total of 480 primary schools and 70 secondary schools (15 of which offer sixth form education). The vast majority of the secondary schools in the county are comprehensive schools but there are a few grammar schools in Lancaster, the Ribble Valley and Rossendale. Two of the county's grammar schools are the best performing in terms of pupils achieving 5 good GCSEs (Lancaster Girls' Grammar and Lancaster Royal Grammar), both producing 100% pass rates under this criterion. In 2012, Ofsted graded 2% of Lancashire schools "inadequate", 37% "satisfactory", 37% "good" and 24% "outstanding".

Lancashire is home to three universities: Lancaster University, University of Central Lancashire (in Preston) and Edge Hill University, Ormskirk.

The University of Lancaster has consistently been within the top 10 universities in the UK according to the Guardian's University League tables in the past 3 years.

Transport

Lancashire is well connected to the rest of the UK by road. The main route in and out of Lancashire is the M6 motorway which crosses Lancashire from North to South and connects it to the rest of the UK's motorway network and major A roads. Lancaster and Blackpool are about 50 minutes from Manchester by road with Preston, Burnley and Blackburn between 25 and 35 minutes away.

The West Coast Main Line runs through Lancashire and services call at Preston and Lancaster. Preston is the county's main station for connections throughout the country and it is possible to catch direct connections to Blackpool (30 minutes), Manchester (40 minutes), Liverpool (1 hour), Leeds (2 hours), Birmingham (1 hour 40 minutes), Glasgow , Edinburgh and London (each approximately 2 ½ hours).

Blackpool International airport is the main airport for the broader Lancashire area however Liverpool airport and the North West's major airport, Manchester Airport, offer a much greater number of flights to more destinations and are easily accessible by train or coach from Lancashire.

There are regular Ferry services from Heysham and Fleetwood serving the Isle of Man and Ireland.

There are a vast number of local bus services linking the towns and cities of Lancashire as well as coach services linking them with other cities of the UK - and Preston incidentally has what is thought to be Western Europe's biggest bus station.

Amenities and Shopping

The main shopping areas in the county are of course the larger towns and cities such as Blackpool and Preston. From the Fishergate shopping centre in Preston to the Houndshill shopping centre in Blackpool there is certainly something for everyone. For the number one shopping experience, the Trafford Centre in Manchester is located not too far away.

As for things to do in Lancashire, the list is almost endless. Blackpool's famous Pleasure Beach and Blackpool Tower go without saying as does the county town of Lancaster with its Museum, Cathedral and picturesque City Hall. Lancashire's industrial past has left it with a vast network of canals and waterways which are perfect for a stroll or a bike ride. Preston's fantastic Harris gallery is also well worth a visit for those seeking some fine art.

Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact editor@primelocation.com

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.