If you're looking to relocate to one of Liverpool's suburbs then West Derby should be firmly on your list to investigate. Located about twenty minutes outside the city centre, it's a quiet area that makes our list of the best places to live in Liverpool. Why? You'll have to read along to find out!
First mentioned in the Doomsday book of 1086, the area is deeply historical and remnants of its past can still be seen today. For around the castle-named roads near the village once stood a Motte and Bailey Castle, a Victorian courthouse and stocks can still be found near to St. Mary's Church and the Yeoman's House is still standing from the 1580s! But enough with the history, let's find out what West Derby is like today...
The first thing that comes to mind about West Derby is the schools, it's every parent's dream. With so many schools located within close proximity to each other, it makes it a super-efficient school run for those who have children of different ages as everything from nursery to infants and juniors to seniors are within walking distance of each other.
However, many schools equal many school children who all need to arrive at the same location and at the exact same time, which can make mornings in this small suburb somewhat of a flurry of activity (and leaves all those who don't need to do the school run questioning the clear lack of boarding schools in Merseyside!)
Despite the drop-off and pick-up rush, on the whole, it's a quiet and leafy area that offers residents a delightful taste of suburban life. Life here centers around West Derby Village, which has seen quite a surge of independent bars and restaurants pop up over the last few years in what we like to call a dose of suburban socialising. Yes Sir! It's here where, pre-lockdown, you could find the locals of all ages having a drink with friends and family.
The village is home to not one but three pubs including The Hunting Lodge, the Sefton Arms, the Hare and Hounds where you can spot the so-called "West Derby Barbies" - a glamorous group of girlies done up to the nines - enjoying a few drinks in the local pubs before heading into the city centre to continue their celebrations. However, when West Derbians (we totally made that name up) are not out having a tipple or two, you can find them enjoying one of the world cuisines in some of the local restaurants.
Alongside the social scene, there are many green spaces including the Walkers Playing Fields and Bill Shankly Playing Fields just off Eaton Road where many of the area's young budding footballers can be found on evenings and weekends. The biggest green space in the area has to go to Croxteth Hall & Country Park, a somewhat countryfied tardis in the middle of a built-up community and a fantastic place for family walks and even better for the fluffier family members!
Starting at West Derby Village, you can walk around the 500-acre estate, taking in the views of the sweet Highland Cows, majestic horses and the stunning Croxteth Hall as you walk along the many paths and trails within the estate. For those looking for something a little different a trip to the Home Farm can allow your little ones to get up and close with the farmyard animals including pigs, goats, owls and donkeys!
For the weekly shop, West Derby residents can choose from Marks and Spencers, Tesco, Sainsbury's and Aldi, all within a close distance of each other.
There is an eclectic mix of house designs in West Derby, a tangible reminder of its historic past and modern-day influence, making it an exciting task for those new to the area to whittle down which house they want to call home. As a Liverpool estate agent, we can tell you that properties here don't stay on the market too long because of the all-important school catchment areas, would-be parents want to ensure that there are no uncertainties when it comes to making their mark on the map.
The majority of houses here are semi-detached and if you're looking for properties for sale in West Derby, Rightmove's data showed that they sold for an average price of £168,398 last year. However, towards the Town Row area, you can find lovely terrace properties for around £132,137. For those with a larger budget, West Derby has some incredible hidden gems especially in the private area of Sandfield Park where you can find an array of large homes within their own land. Spacious, tree-lined roads curve around the park with tiny glimpses of the stunning homes behind their gates. With the variety of affluent residents, there isn't one architectural design of the homes, they are all different which adds to the whimsical beauty of the area.
As the area known for its schools, you can bet there is one to suit you as a family whether you're looking for a church school, private school or something to suit those with extra needs.
St. Vincent's is a specialist school for those with sensory impairments and other needs that has served Liverpool children since 1850. It is the only church school in the country for those who are visually impaired, making it a special place for families who have children that are blind. Catering for students from early years right up to GCSE and post-16 education, children here achieve more than just grades but develop independence and self-worth.
Sandfield Park is a fantastic school that provides education to those with a wide range of physical, medical, emotional and learning difficulties. It also caters for children who are in long-term care at Alder Hey Children's Hospital and for children who can't attend their regular school for medical reasons. From Key Stage 3 up to Sixth Form, students can attend the school.
Unlike other secondary schools in the area, St. Edward's College is an academy, meaning it sits independently from the national curriculum and the school is seen as a prestigious educational institution with many parents moving to the area to increase their chances of their children getting accepted. Children can attend the school from primary age at Runnymede St. Edwards Catholic Primary located next door to the area.
We hope that with all our information you're ready to choose whether or not West Derby is the place for you to settle down. If you need a little extra info, then head over to our West Derby Area Guide to find out a little more! Here is our quick recap of the pros and cons:
Great for Schools
Nice Community Vibe
Good Bus Routes
Can be Busy During School Drop-Off / Pick-Up Times