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The best places to live in Lincolnshire

Published Jul 29, 2021 – 12 mins read

In this blog, we list some of the best places to live in Lincolnshire, a county in England’s East Midlands, with a long coastline on the North Sea to the east.

With beautiful countryside and lots of open spaces, coastal landscapes, epic skies, historic towns and a vibrant city, this county offers something for everyone.

Stamford

Stamford

Key facts:

  • Education: two primary schools – Great Casterton Church of England Primary School and The Bluecoat Primary School and Nursery – are rated Outstanding by Ofsted. In the public sector at secondary level, Stamford Welland Academy is rated Good by Ofsted. Stamford High School is a co-educational independent school offering places to children from nursery age through to sixth-form, and was recently shortlisted for an Independent Schools Award by the Times Education Supplement (TLS);
  • Transport links: Stamford lies just off the important north-south A1(M) motorway some 14 miles (23 km) north of Peterborough and 22 miles (36 km) south of Grantham. With access to the equally important M1 motorway, Leicester’s city is 32 miles (52 km) to the west. Central London is a distance of 90 miles (145 km) – approximately a two-hour drive;
  • Trains: trains for the mainline station in Stamford typically arrive at London Kings Cross in just over two hours, although earlier rush-hour trains can take just over an hour.

Why live in Stamford?

Stamford is a small market town that has retained much of its Georgian architecture – though its history goes back way further, to at least 922, when the Anglo-Saxons named the place Steanford.

It is a picturesque town – a favourite of filmmakers looking for a backdrop of rural England and has featured in Pride and Prejudice, Elizabeth the Golden Age, Middlemarch, and Bleak House, to name but a few.

Irnham

Key facts:

  • Education: Ingoldsby Academy in nearby Grantham – around 10 miles (16 km) – for children up to 11 is rated Good by Ofsted. The public sector secondary level Charles Read Academy – also in Grantham – is rated Good by Ofsted. Grantham Preparatory International School is a small independent school also in Grantham;
  • Transport links: Irnham is in the south Lincolnshire countryside’s depths, to the south east of Grantham. It is some 8 miles (13 km) to the north west of Bourne, where the road joins the main A15 trunk road – Lincoln to the north and Peterborough, with its access to the A1(M) to the south.  The distance to central London is approximately 110 miles (177 km) – a drive of around two hours and 20 minutes;
  • Trains: mainline railway stations are at Grantham, with trains to London Kings Cross taking around one hour and 45 minutes and Rauceby, for trains to Lincoln, taking somewhat under two hours.

Why live in Irnham?

Despite being tucked away in the Lincolnshire countryside’s heart, Irnham has excellent road and rail transport links – via the national motorway network both south to London and the north for the City of Lincoln itself.

Irnham sits on an elevated limestone ridge overlooking Grantham to the northwest.

The parish of the same name also includes the nearby hamlets of Bulby and Hawthorpe.

Witham on the Hill

Witham on the Hill

Key facts:

  • Education: Bourne Westfield Primary Academy – 4.6 miles (7.4 km) – is rated Outstanding by Ofsted. The public sector’s co-educational Bourne Grammar School (for pupils aged 11 to 18) is also rated Outstanding by Ofsted. Stately Whitham Hall, in Whitham on the Hill, is a highly regarded independent, co-educational preparatory for children aged 4 to 13;
  • Transport links: most routes are via the small town of Bourne, which is on the main A15 trunk road leading north to Lincoln – 40 miles (64 km) – and south to Peterborough – 18 miles (29 km) – where there is access to the main north-south A1(M) motorway. Central London is around 100 miles (161 km) to the south – a drive of about 2 hours and 10 minutes;
  • Trains: the nearest mainline station is at Stamford, with trains to London taking around two hours and 10 minutes, or less in rush hour.

Why live in Witham on the Hill?

Witham is an attractive, small village situated between the east and west tributaries of the River Glen in Lincolnshire.

The village is set in stunning countryside, which is also the location for Grimsthorpe Castle Park and Gardens – less than 4 miles (6.4 km) away – a well-maintained stately home and parkland offering an adventure playground for children and long trails ideal for cycling.

Swayfield

Key facts:

  • Education: Bourne Westfield Primary Academy – 9 miles (14 km) – is rated Outstanding by Ofsted. The public sector’s co-educational Bourne Grammar School (for pupils aged 11 to 18) is also rated Outstanding by Ofsted. The King’s School, a boys grammar school in Grantham – 14 miles (23 km) – is also rated Outstanding by Ofsted;
  • Transport links: road transport links are principally eastwards via Bourne to the A15 north to Lincoln and south to Peterborough. The village of Swayfield is also less than seven miles (11 km) from an important junction with the main north-south A1(M). Central London is approximately 106 miles (170 km) to the south – a drive of around two hours and 15 minutes;
  • Trains: several mainline stations are a short drive from Swayfield, including Oakham, some 15 miles (24 km) for trains to Birmingham, Leicester and Stansted Airport. Stamford, some 15.6 miles 25 km, for trains to London Kings Cross typically in just over two hours. And Melton Mowbray, 18.5 miles (29.7 km) away for trains to London, Birmingham and Stanstead Airport. Grantham also has trains to London Kings Cross taking around one hour and 45 minutes.

Why live in Swayfield?

Swayfield is a small village in the heart of the Lincolnshire countryside between Grantham to the northwest and Bourne to the south east.

With the A1(M) to one side and the A15 to the other, Swayfield has better transport links than its rural location might imply.

Several mainline railway stations are also close by.

There are some outstanding schools in the neighbourhood that are likely to prove an ideal location to raise your family.

Greatford

Greatford

Key facts:

  • Education: in nearby Stamford – 5.8 miles (9.4 km) – both Great Casterton Church of England Primary School and The Bluecoat School are rated Outstanding by Ofsted. The public sector secondary level Stamford Welland Academy is rated Good by Ofsted. Stamford High School is a well-regarded co-educational independent school offering places to children from nursery age through to sixth-form;
  • Transport links: Greatford’s principal road transport link is via Stamford, to the south west, which sits alongside the strategic north-south A1(M). Less than 3 miles to the east, there is also access to the main A15 trunk road, which leads north to Lincoln. London is approximately 95 miles (153 km) to the south – a drive taking around two and a quarter hours;
  • Trains: the mainline railway station is in Stamford, and trains take roughly two hours (or less during rush hour) to arrive at London Kings Cross.

Why live in Greatford?

The local parish council boasts that Greatford is a small and beautiful village, with the River West Glen running through its centre.

With all the rural charm of a thoroughly English village, Greatford is nevertheless well connected to the local towns of Stamford, Bourne, and Market Deeping – and, by the motorway network and rail to the capital itself.

Holywell

Key facts:

  • Education: Bourne Westfield Primary Academy – some 9.5 miles (15.2 km) away – is rated Outstanding by Ofsted, as is the secondary level, co-educational Bourne Grammar School (for students aged 11 to 18). 6.7 miles (11.5 km) to the south, Stamford High School is one of a family of independent schools offering co-educational places to children from nursery age through to sixth-form;
  • Transport links: Holywell is in the heart of the Lincolnshire countryside, more or less central between two north-south routes – the A1(M) and the A15 trunk road. The A1(M) is 3.7 miles (6 km) to the west at Epingham, while access to the A15 is at Bourne; London is approximately 99 miles (159 km) by road – a drive of over two hours depending on traffic;
  • Trains: there are mainline stations at Stamford for a roughly two hour journey (or less during commuter hours) to London Kings Cross and Oakham, some 15 miles (24 km) away, for trains to Birmingham, Leicester and Stansted Airport.

Why live in Holywell?

As a small settlement of houses, Holywell grew up around the stately country mansion and farmed estate of Holywell Hall – a Grade II listed 17th-century country house built on the site of an older medieval manor house. Holywell Hall is now a popular venue for exclusive wedding receptions.

Holywell offers peaceful country living on the fringes of the whole East Midlands conurbation, has excellent transport links by road and rail, and offers some outstanding schools in both the public and private sectors.

Stoke Rochford

Stoke Rochford

Key facts:

  • Education: Ingoldsby Academy in nearby Grantham – 6.3 miles (11.6 km) to the north – for children up to 11 is rated Good by Ofsted. The public sector secondary level Charles Read Academy – also in Grantham – is rated Good by Ofsted. The King’s School, a boys grammar school in Grantham – 14 miles (23 km) – is rated Outstanding by Ofsted;
  • Transport links: Stoke Rochford lies alongside the north-south arterial A1(M) just south of Grantham. It is roughly equidistant from the East Midlands conurbations of Nottingham and Leicester, some 30 miles (48 km) to the west – where you can also join the M1 motorway. London is approximately 106 miles (171 km) south via the A1(M) – a drive of around two and a quarter hours;
  • Trains: three mainline stations are a short drive from Stoke Rochford: Melton Mowbray, 14.6 miles (23.5 km) away for trains to London, Birmingham and Stansted Airport; Oakham, some 16 miles (25.5 km) for trains to Birmingham, Leicester and Stansted Airport; and Stamford, some 16.5 miles (26.6 km), for trains to London Kings Cross typically in just over two hours.

Why move to Stoke Rochford?

Stoke Rochford’s village has the distinction of having been laid out especially to complement the architectural style of the community’s grand and stately home, Stoke Rochford Hall, which was built in 1845.

One of the finest stately homes in eastern England, Stoke Rochford Hall, was built for the wealthy Christopher Turnor, who served as Conservative MP for South Lincolnshire between 1841 and 1847.

By no means as grand as the Hall – but no less appealing to golfers throughout Lincolnshire and the East Midlands – is Stoke Rochford Golf Club which has been dubbed “Lincolnshire’s Hidden Gem”.

Louth

Louth

Key facts:

  • Education: Louth Kidgate Primary Academy is rated Outstanding by Ofsted, as is the local public sector, secondary level King Edward VI Grammar School. Lincoln Minster Senior School – 27 miles (43 km) away – is a highly regarded co-educational independent school (for ages 2 to 18), recognised within the top 15% of all independent schools in the UK;
  • Transport links: Louth sits on the eastern edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds, with Grimsby some 16 miles (26 km) to the north and the cathedral town and Lincoln’s county centre to the south west. Road transport links are principally via Grimsby, for the M180, M1 and points north, and via Grantham – 50 miles (80.5 km) to the south west for the A1(M) motorway south. The latter brings London to within 148 miles (238 km) – a drive of some three and a half hours.
  • Trains: you have a choice of mainline railway stations reasonably close by – Market Rasen 14.5 miles (23.3) to the west, with trains to Kings Lynn, Doncaster, and London Kings Cross; Cleethorpes 15.4 miles (24.7 km) for trains to Sheffield and Loughborough; and Grimsby Town, 15.2 miles (24.4 km) for trains to Cleethorpes and Manchester Airport via Sheffield and Manchester Piccadilly, and Lincoln and Newark.

Why live in Louth?

Louth has been described as off the beaten track, but well worth the journey, and a historic market town that continues to thrive.

The town is set against the backdrop of the scenic Lincolnshire Wolds (a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty).

It is just half an hour’s drive to the coast (at Mablethorpe), 45 minutes to Lincoln’s cathedral city, and an hour’s drive to the main north-south A1(M). There are also some outstanding schools nearby – in both the public and private sectors. 

Woodhall Spa

Key facts:

  • Education: St Andrew’s Church of England Primary School is rated Good by Ofsted. In Horncastle – 7 miles (11 km), the co-educational Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School is rated Outstanding by Ofsted. St Hugh’s School, a co-educational day and boarding preparatory school in Woodhall Spa, is highly rated;
  • Transport links: Woodhall Spa is in the heart of the Lincolnshire countryside, approximately 19 miles (30 km) equidistant between Lincoln’s City to the north west and Boston to the south east. The main road transport link is via Grantham – 32 miles (52 km) – and its junction with the main north-south A1(M). London is approximately 133 miles (213 km) to the south – but likely to be a drive of just over three hours; 
  • Trains: the nearest mainline railway station is Metheringham – 9 miles (15 km) – with some trains making the journey to London Kings Cross (via Peterborough) in little more than two and a half hours.

Is Woodhall Spa a nice place to live?

Woodhall Spa is tucked well away from the hustle and bustle of the country’s busy towns and cities, making it a piece of England from a bygone age.

The village retains an Edwardian character, is set against the backdrop of magnificent pine woods, and rightly boasts its claim to be one of Lincolnshire’s most attractive villages.

Woodhall Spa is one of Lincolnshire’s most attractive villages and home to two top-class golf courses.

Lincoln

Lincoln

Key facts:

  • Education: there are at least three primary schools in Lincoln’s catchment area rated Outstanding by Ofsted. The partially selective, public sector secondary level co-educational school The Priory Academy LSST is also rated Outstanding by Ofsted and is the Lincolnshire Teaching Schools Alliance’s lead school. In the private sector, the independent co-educational day and boarding Lincoln Minster Senior School is ranked among the top 15% of all independent schools in the UK. The University of Lincoln welcomes national and international students and is ranked in the world’s top 150 universities in the Times Higher Education’s (THE) Young University Rankings 2020. It was also named the Modern University of the Year in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2021.
  • Transport links: the cathedral City of Lincoln sits on the main A15 trunk road with Scunthorpe to the immediate north and the Yorkshire hubs of Doncaster and Sheffield to the northwest. Following the A15 south, you come to Peterborough and its junction with the main north-south A1(M). London is approximately 144 miles (232 km) – a drive of around four hours;
  • Trains: trains from the mainline station in Lincoln reach London Kings Cross in less than two and half hours.

Why live in Lincoln?

It is one of the world’s great historic cities, say those who live and work there, combining the old with the new in what is both a cathedral and university town.

It is impossible to miss the grandeur of its incredible 700-year-old cathedral.

Little wonder, perhaps, that Lincoln is one of the happiest places to live in the whole of the UK – beating the likes of Manchester, London, Birmingham, and Belfast.

Alford

Key facts:

  • Education: Alford Primary School is rated Good by Ofsted. Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School in Alford, a selective Academy-status school in the public sector for students aged 11 to 18, is rated Outstanding. St Hugh’s School, an independent co-educational day and boarding preparatory school in Woodhall Spa – 21 miles (34 km) away – is highly rated;
  • Transport links: Alford is approximately 35 miles (57 km) equidistant between Lincoln to the immediate west and Boston to the south west. Road transport links are what you might expect from somewhere relatively far from the beaten track. London is approximately 141 miles (227 km) – but the drive is likely to take around three and a half hours;
  • Trains: The nearest mainline railway station is on the coast at Skegness – 14.5 miles (23.3 km) – where most trains go to Nottingham in the East Midlands, a journey of around two hours.

Why move to Alford?

Alford lies between the Lincolnshire Wolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and the Lincolnshire coast (at the charmingly named Miami Beach), just seven miles – 11 km – to the east.

For a small town, it is also especially well served by its many retail outlets.

Caistor

Caistor

Key facts:

  • Education: Caistor Church of England and Methodist Primary School is rated Good by Ofsted. Caistor Grammar School – a public sector, selective Academy for students aged 11 to 18 is rated Outstanding by Ofsted. Lincoln Minster Senior School is just 27 miles (43 km) and offers independent co-educational schooling that has been ranked among the top 15% of all independent schools in the UK;
  • Transport links: Caistor sits on the very northern edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds, enjoying a feeling of peace and calm away from the industrial towns of the northeast, such as Grimsby, Immingham, and Scunthorpe. It is via the latter, however, that Caistor enjoys links to with the national motorway network, through the M180 and M18 to Doncaster and the north-south A1(M);
  • Trains: The nearest mainline railway station is at Barnetby, where services on the TransPennine Express connect with  Manchester Piccadilly in less than two and a half hours.

Why live in Caistor?

Caistor has been described as one of the most desirable places in which to live in Lincolnshire, thanks to three predominant qualities: “community, charm and countryside”.

Whilst you enjoy the comfort of countryside life and the outstanding schools surrounding your home, you can also take advantage of the brisker pace of events and the shopping opportunities in Lincoln, 27 miles (43 km) away, or Grimsby, 12 miles (19.3 km).

There are many period properties in and around this charming town, which retains the original Roman fortress’s ruins.

Spalding

Key facts:

  • Education:  St Norbert’s Catholic Voluntary Academy (for children up to the age of 11) is rated Outstanding by Ofsted, as is Spalding High School for girls (and co-educational sixth form). Ayscoughfee Hall School is a small independent preparatory school for boys in Spalding;
  • Transport links: Spalding is roughly 20 miles (32 km) equidistant from Stamford to the south-west, Grantham to the north west and The Wash to the east. Both Stamford and Grantham give access to the main north-south A1(M,) and this route puts London approximately 105 miles (168 km) away – a drive of around two and a half hours;
  • Trains: from the mainline railway station at Spalding, trains to London Kings Cross take a little over two hours (with one platform change).

Is Spalding a nice place to live?

Spalding and the surrounding area has previously been praised as a beautiful place to live, work, relax, and raise children.

The tranquil, lowland River Welland meanders its tree-lined way through the small town of Georgian architecture and its blend of independent shops and high street chains.

You can even catch the Spalding Water Taxi for a boat ride from the High Street to the Springfields Shopping Outlet and Gardens, just half an hour away.

South Rauceby

South Rauceby

Key facts:

  • Education: Rauceby Church of England Primary School is rated Good by Ofsted. The public sector Carre’s Grammar School, founded in 1605 for boys aged 11 to 18 in neighbouring Sleaford – 3.6 miles (5.8 km) – is also rated Good by Ofsted. The independent, co-education Lincoln Minster School for students aged 2 to 18 is some 20 miles (33 km) to the north of South Rauceby;
  • Transport links: for routes north, access to the A1(M) from South Rauceby is at Newark-on-Trent, 17 miles (28 km) to the north west, or for southbound journeys via Grantham, 12.4 miles (20 km) to the south west. London is 136 miles (219 km) to the south – a drive of around two and a half hours depending on traffic;
  • Trains: trains from the mainline station at Rauceby make the London Kings Cross journey (including platform changes) in around two and a half hours or less.

Why live in South Rauceby?

South Rauceby is a typical Lincolnshire village and displays all the community spirit and friendliness you might expect from such a rural idyll.

Its village hall is on Main Street, serves both North and South Rauceby. It hosts village clubs and events, together with Rauceby Pre-School, which serves the local community and surrounding area.

Handily placed just a few yards further along Main Street is the village public house, the Bustard Inn & Restaurant. Around the corner is the parish church, St Peter’s Church.

Best places to live in Lincolnshire

As property finders, we often assist clients in deciding where to live based on their preferences and situation.

If you need a local perspective, and would like to discuss your requirements for a property in Lincolnshire, then please do contact Garrington.