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The local area guide to living in Hampshire

The seaside county of Hampshire is the most populated non-metropolitan county in the UK, and has retained a strong military presence throughout the years. Home to the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force, it has a profound military and aviary history which can be seen throughout the county.

There are various beaches and resorts one can enjoy throughout the county; and its close proximity to the coast means there is never a shortage of activities and events. It is also home to two of the country's largest and busiest port cities; Portsmouth and Southampton.

Information about the local residents

Hampshire's huge population of 1,317,800 has increased in average age since the 2001 Census, with the percentage of those aged 45 and above growing by approximately 21%. With this in mind, the amount of children beneath the age of 4 has also increased, implying more and more families are moving to the area as the years go by.

A large portion of the county, particularly in the ceremonial city of Southampton are students travelling to study at the local universities.

The employment rate of Hampshire is at an all-time high, with nearly 98% of residents in some form of employment. Of this population, 91% identify as being White British, showing a lack of ethnic diversity in the area.

Nearby schools

The schools in the county are rated, for the most part, outstanding or good by their respective Ofsted authorities. The primary schools include Charles Kingsley's Church of England Primary School in Hook and St Faith's Church of England Primary School in Winchester; both 'Outstanding' mixed-sex schools accepting students aged between 5 and 11 years old.

There are plenty of respectable secondary schools in the area, accepting students aged between 11-16 years old. Among these are King's School in Winchester, which has been praised for the high standard of exam results achieved, and has consequently received an 'Outstanding' rating from Ofsted.

For higher education, the county of Hampshire offers an abundance of universities. Two can be found in Portsmouth and Winchester; both of which are highly popular and attract students from across the UK. A further two can be found in Southampton; the larger of which boasts impressive statistics as being among the top 1% of universities worldwide.

Getting around

As Hampshire lies close to the coast, there are nearby ferries and coastal services which link the county to the Isle of Wight and the Channel Islands; which make for a great day out during the summer months.

Hampshire sits at the heart of three main railway lines. The Wessex line travels between Southampton and Bristol, the Southern Western main line travels between Weymouth and London Waterloo and finally the Portsmouth Direct line provides a link between Portsmouth and London Waterloo. Whilst a fair few hours from London, the trains offer an easy link into the city; which is appealing to commuters and students in the area.

Hampshire is certainly not short of useful roads. The M3 provides a direct link to London, while the M27 offers routes to larger built up areas around the county and to the surrounding coastal areas. Locally, there is an extensive web of bus routes which contains over 240 services.

Local shops

As a bustling coastal county, the main attractions consist of trips to the Solent coast. There are several beaches, offering beautiful coastal views and days on the water, but also various attractions for those with an interest in Hampshire's military history, such as Fort Nelson and Portchester Castle.

Given that the county is particularly popular among students, the various towns have built up their modern attractions accordingly. There are various large shopping complexes across the county, from Winchester's compact shopping centre to Basingstoke's larger Festival Place.

The nightlife across the county is busy and exciting, with the majority of nights being aimed at the local students. However that's not to say there's not an appeal for the older generations looking for a night out. There are several famous pubs and bars, alongside various theatres and venues for those looking for a more refined night out.

Various events are thrown each year around the county, such as the Farnborough Air Show, as well as numerous food and beer festivals.

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

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