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The local area guide to living in Windermere: The Local Area Guide

Located in Cumbria county, Windermere is a part of the renowned Lake District Natural Park and is named for the country’s largest natural lake – although it is around a mile away from the water’s edge. The picturesque scenery is complemented by quaint hamlets, Grade II buildings and a number of museums.

Tourism is prevalent in the area, and provides a major source of employment and funding for the town. A new regeneration programme is underway and is set to see further developments in an effort to raise the profile of the National Park. The Lakeland Arts Trust recently received £1.25 million in funding as part of a plan to restore the Windermere Steamboat Museum. The civil parish town offers a quiet way of life and abundance of natural beauty, though is still well connected to the major cities.

Information about the local residents

Windermere itself has a small population of 8,245 – although the greater boundaries of the National Park are home to around 43,000 residents. There are also a number of unoccupied houses in the area, such as the 15% used as second or holiday homes. Around 67.7% of homes are owner occupied, and the average price of a detached house stands at roughly £357,000.

Predominately white British, with 89.9% of inhabitants identifying as such, 7.1% identified as White Non-British, and 1.8% as being from Black or Asian backgrounds. In terms of age, Windermere has seen significant growth in the number of residents of retirement age as well as a small decline in the number of children among its population, likely due to its popularity among retirees and being favoured as a seasonal or holiday home destination.

Nearby schools

There are limited school choices in Windermere, although the ones available are highly rated. The county’s only state primary school is Windermere Church of England Junior School, while the only state secondary school is The Lakes School.

The independent Windermere School takes boys and girls aged between two and 18 years, and follows a curriculum that places heavy emphasis on outdoor education – aided by the nearby National Park. There are also a number of post-18 education options available, both in the area itself and in surrounding villages. Around 30 miles away is the University of Cumbria – one of the UK’s newest universities acclaimed for its sports science courses.

TGetting around

To reach Windermere, drivers will usually follow the A591 into the National Park. There’s also a car ferry which connects with Far Sawrey and which can be used to reach nearby attractions. However, there are limited spaces available, often leading to long waits during peak season.

While the easiest way to get into Windermere may be by car, visitors and residents are encouraged to use public transport within the town itself. As well as frequent bus services, there are a number of scenic cycle routes. For those accessing the city by train, convenient rail links from Windermere train station run services directly to Manchester Airport as well as Blackpool and Liverpool.

Local shops

The biggest draw in Windermere is, of course, the Lake District but there are plenty of entertainment options in the local area. The city and its nearby villages have a number of shopping destinations, with an abundance of independent stores and local eateries to be visited.

The local meat and beer are renowned by food fanatics countrywide, and are definitely worth sampling. There are plenty of gastro pubs and cafes around, as well as a number of award-winning restaurants including Hooked which specialises in fresh sea food. For a quintessentially British pit-stop Brambles Tea Rooms offers cream teas among other sweet treats.

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.

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