May 02, 2017
Leeds is a bustling city in the heart of Yorkshire – indeed, it’s the most populous city in Yorkshire and Humber region, and the fourth most populous urban area in the UK. It’s the centre of Yorkshire’s commercial, financial and cultural scenes, making it a great voice for those who want to experience everything city life has to offer – with more affordable housing options than in the big cities down south.
Bradford, just 8.6 miles west of Leeds, is another bustling city. It’s the third-largest in Yorkshire and Humber after Leeds and Sheffield, but thanks to its position in the eastern foothills of the Pennine hills, it’s also a great choice if you want a slice of country life.
We’ve put together a guide to the best areas to live in both cities to help you decide where to focus your property search.
Horsforth lies roughly five miles northwest of Leeds and is consistently named as one of the best suburbs in England for quality of life. It’s very popular with young families, thanks to the highly-rated primary and secondary schools in the town, and the easy rail links to both Leeds and York also make it a popular choice for professionals and first-time buyers.
This lively inner suburb is just 2 miles northeast of Leeds city centre, and was recently awarded a place on The Sunday Times Best Places to Live 2021, which singled out Chapel Allerton as “their favourite corner of Leeds”. It’s a buzzing, cosmopolitan area with plenty of restaurants, galleries and green spaces all of which make it a great choice for young couples and families alike. What’s more, it’s just an 11-minute drive into Leeds city centre so commuting couldn’t be any easier.
This suburb is famous for its 700-acre park, the second largest in Europe after Munich’s Englischer Garten. There’s something for everyone with scented gardens for the blind, a wildlife area in the upper lake, fishing in the larger Waterloo Lake, tennis courts, sports pitches and a golf course. Aside from the park, there are plenty of other amenities from independent shops and cafes to good schools and supermarkets.
If you want to live right in the heart of the city, Leeds waterfront is the place to be. With all of the city’s amenities on your doorstep, it’s the perfect choice for those who love the hustle and bustle of inner-city life with easy access to all of the best bars, shops and restaurants. Most of the housing options here are flats rather than houses which is something to bear in mind if you’re looking for a larger space.
Just ten miles from Leeds, Ottley is a proper market town, making it a great choice for those who want to live a little outside of the city centre but still have access to fresh, local produce. There are 17 different pubs in Otley as well as top-class restaurants, and its location on the border of the Yorkshire Dales makes it a fantastic choice for keen cyclists, walkers, and general outdoor enthusiasts.
Once a separate town, Shipley is now considered to be part of greater Bradford, and is consistently voted as the best place to live in the city. It includes the village of Saltaire, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, including the Victorian-era Salt Mill and its beautiful associated housing. Shipley is also home to the historic Shipley Glen Tramway, and has plenty of attractions to keep young children happy, making it the perfect choice for young families who want to be close to the city centre whilst having plenty of green spaces to enjoy.
A pretty former mill town 11 miles northwest of Bradford, Keighley is the biggest town in the Borough of Bradford after Bradford itself. It’s surrounded by countryside, positioned between Airedale and Keighley Moors, making it a good choice for those who want to be close to nature but still within a commutable distance to Bradford (22 minutes driving) or Leeds (a 46-minute drive).
The southern areas of Bradford city are a great choice for busy families and young professionals, with a range of housing options that are affordable for first-time buyers. The regions in Bradford South include Buttershaw, Dudley Hill and Great Horton.
To the east of the city centre, you’ll find quaint former villages that have since been absorbed into the city but still retain some of the charms of village living. Idle is popular, with its village green, a conservation area, and plenty of amenities including shops, restaurants, a children’s play park and a bowling green. Apperley Green is another popular choice, straddling both the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and the River Aire.
If you need advice for first-time buying in Leeds or Bradford – or if you’re looking for a reliable mortgage broker in West Yorkshire – don’t hesitate to contact us today.
We’re experts on all things mortgage-related (and our services are always 100% free).
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