Is Leamington Worth the Hype?
“At the end of the day you need to choose a place that’s right for you and if that’s Leamington then great, I’m certain you’ll have an amazing time!”
We’re coming up to the time of year when people might be starting to consider where they want to spread their roots off-campus. As a continuation from a previous post, I’m going to do a little review of my experience living in Leamington Spa in the hopes that someone might find it useful.
AT A GLANCE:
Accessibility: Easy access to and from campus on the U1 and U2, as well as the National Express 11.
Locations: North, South, and Central (I was in Central).
Facilities: An abundance of cafes, bars and restaurants. An Aldi, Morrisons, and Tesco. The learning grid in Leamington town hall.
Leamington really promotes a thriving social life. With an abundance of cafes, restaurants, clubs and bars to choose from, you’ll be set for whatever occasion. My personal favourites are Spa Town Coffee (a great study space and amazing coffee) and the Giggling Squid (the best Thai food I’ve tasted). And if you somehow exhaust Leamington’s options, there are really convenient bus links to Warwick and Stratford-Upon-Avon, which offer some really great experiences for day trips with friends, or on your own if you just fancied a change of scenery.
In general, Leamington is just a really great environment to be in. There’s plenty of green spaces, like Jephson Gardens and Victoria Park, offering ample opportunities for fresh air, study breaks, and dog watching (one of my personal favourite past-times).
All in all, Leamington is a lovely place to live, particularly if you like a busy social life or cafe-hopping. I also didn’t mind the distance from campus as the bus journey was a good time to read my book, and it felt like there was a genuine divide between work and leisure.
I lived in Leamington in my second year, which was generally not a great experience mental health-wise. Combining that with my closest friends outside the flat living in Coventry, I felt very isolated. This is obviously a very personal experience and opinion and certainly won’t be the case for everyone, but it might be worth considering where your friends plan on living.
Given its popularity among the student population, Leamington has developed some hefty price tags and it can be very competitive trying to find somewhere to live. I also feel that Leamington lacks a community feel as there’s a definite divide between the students and the regular inhabitants. I think this can detract from the homeliness and probably exasperated my feelings of homesickness in the second year.
Finally, there is the draw-back of the distance from campus. While this can be enjoyable in the case of an afternoon lecture or seminar, 9ams aren’t fun, especially if you’re located in Central or North Leamington.
At the end of the day you need to choose a place that’s right for you and if that’s Leamington then great, I’m certain you’ll have an amazing time! Just make sure that you don’t feel rushed or pressured into making a decision that you don’t think is in your best interests. I’m currently finding Earlsdon to be much more of a home than Leamington ever was (a review on Earlsdon will hopefully be up at the end of term).
Happy house hunting and please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions!
Until next time.