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Living in Northampton: The Local Area Guide

If you’re looking for a traditional market town that offers all the perks of the city, look no further than Northampton. With a vibrant town centre, shopping mall, regular market and wide range of amenities, it’s easy to get Northampton confused for one of the nearby cities. However, despite its attempts to get city status back in 2000, Northampton remains a town.

As a resident here, there’s plenty to enjoy. The town has its own market and shopping facilities alongside a range of excellent leisure facilities. There are also restaurants, theatres and cinemas, and a number of fantastic bars and clubs – ideal for the region’s younger population. There are also lots of offerings just outside the town, with Northampton’s beautiful countryside a stone’s throw away. Sports fans will also love the fantastic sporting facilities here and the town’s close proximity to Silverstone and Rockingham motor racing circuits.


Northampton has had a real boom in terms of its population, especially over recent years. At the time of the 2011 census, the population was recorded as 212,069 – and has since continued to grow. In fact, Centre for Cities data revealed that Northampton’s population had grown by 11.3% between 2004 and 2013. This figure put the town’s growth rate as one of the ten highest in the UK. The population here is relatively young too, compared to other towns across the UK.

When it comes to employment, 2011 census data reveals that just over two thirds of the population were economically active. The town is also touted as one of the best places to be self-employed – with Experian naming Northampton as "the best place in the UK to start and run a business” in 2014. Industries worked in included Wholesale and Retail Trade, Repair of Motor Vehicles and Motor Cycles (18.9%), Human Health and Social Work Activities (12.9%), and manufacturing has been a popular industry too.


Whether you’re looking for primary schools, secondary schools, or higher educational establishments, you’re sure to be impressed with the offerings in this town. Out of the 50 primary schools, a number have received excellent ratings from Ofsted, including Preston Hedges Primary School, Weston Favell CofE Primary School, and Collingtree Church of England Primary School.

The best secondary schools in Northampton are Northampton School for Boys and Northampton School for Girls. Both schools are comprehensive schools and the boys’ school became the top performing comprehensive school in the country in 2007. Other good performing secondary schools include Northampton High School and Quinton House School.

When it comes to higher education, the town also boasts its own university. The University of Northampton has been consistently placed in the Guardian University Guide’s top 50; and in November 2013, it was shortlisted for the Times Higher Education Awards University of the Year.


Northampton is conveniently located and well connected to the major road network. Junctions 15, 15A, and 16 on the M1 all serve the town. Getting around the town is easy too – but roads can get busy on Saturdays because of the rugby and football games. For those that prefer public transportation, Northampton offers a great bus service, with regular journeys scheduled in and across the town.

If you’re looking for public transportation to one of the nearby cities, hop on the train. Northampton Castle Station is located approximately a mile from the town centre and offers regular train services to London and Birmingham – to name but a few. A number of airports are located close by too – with Heathrow, Luton, and Birmingham all just an hour away.

Amenities and shopping

Whether you’re looking for the perfect restaurant to celebrate in or looking to update your wardrobe, Northampton has it all. There’s a real mix of restaurants, cafes, and shops – including independent, family-run options alongside big-brands. Grosvenor Shopping Centre is one of the region’s popular shopping spots. Featuring a range of stores, including Boots, Lush, and Superdry, it caters for all age groups and shopping needs. More shopping is also available on Abington Street, a pedestrianised shopping street in the town.

For more individual shopping, head to the Market Square, where you’ll find a variety of fantastic stalls. You could also venture out into the nearby Northamptonshire countryside and visit shopping spots like Castle Ashby Shopping Yard.

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

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

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