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5 min read

Living and Working In Winchester

The cathedral city of Winchester is in the county of Hampshire on the edge of the South Downs National Park - known for its rolling hills, pretty villages and scenic walking trails. It is only around sixty five miles from London and fifteen miles from Southampton.
Written by
Joanna Clare
Content Manager
Published on
April 16, 2024

The cathedral city of Winchester is in the county of Hampshire on the edge of the South Downs National Park - known for its rolling hills, pretty villages and scenic walking trails. It is only around sixty five miles from London and fifteen miles from Southampton. The wider City of Winchester district includes a selection of picturesque towns such as Bishops Waltham, a medieval market town and home to the ruins of Bishop’s Waltham Palace and the picturesque town of Alresford which is where the well known Watercress Line railway runs ten miles until it reaches Alton. Winchester is in close proximity to Southampton Airport while the larger London Heathrow Airport is approximately fifty five miles away.

Winchester can boast a rich history which dates as far back as prehistoric times with many interesting archaeological finds dating from this period. It once served as the capital of the Anglo Saxon kingdom of Wessex which made it a significant political and cultural centre. The city flourished under Roman rule with evidence of its importance found within the ruins of Winchester’s Roman walls and other structures. Throughout the Medieval period, the city was a key religious and administrative hub , home to Winchester Cathedral and Winchester Castle, where the Great Hall stands today. The city has long played pivotal roles in history, witnessing several major events which include the signing of the Magna Carta in 1215.

Winchester is delivering on its Central Winchester Regeneration vision to create a large-scale and comprehensive redevelopment of the central Winchester area costing around £100 million. Winchester is a prosperous city which has a robust economy. Recently ranked top in the Royal Mail Happiness Index of 2019, the city offers high living standards, high average earnings and a skilled workforce. It has been identified as a fantastic place for investment and for businesses to relocate to. Key sectors are diverse and include professional and financial services, retail, manufacturing and engineering, knowledge and creative industries, public sector, technology and digital, education, tourism and hospitality, healthcare and retail. Businesses thrive here with demand for business space outstripping supply and this success expands outwards also, to the rural economy, across a district which spans around 250 square miles. There is a strong visitor economy and the city sees in excess of five million visitors each year.

Education is high on the agenda here with both the University of Winchester and the University of Southampton’s Winchester School of Art having strong and enviable reputations which attract students from both the UK and abroad.

There are a large number of museums and galleries in and around Winchester. Jane Austen’s house in nearby Chawton, is a popular choice where visitors can see the cottage where she lived and wrote her novels. Winchester City Museum explores the city’s past while the Great Hall is home to the legendary King Arthur. Westgate Museum offers insights into the city’s military and social history, including its role as a medieval gateway. Winchester Cathedral is one of the largest cathedrals in Europe and dates from as far back as the 11th century, renowned for its exquisite sculptures and stunning stained glass windows. It also houses the Shrine of St Swithun, a former Anglo Saxon bishop and holds the remains of various Saxon kings.

A popular farmers market, a fantastic variety of restaurants, pubs, bars and inns as well as every type of shop from unique and independent shops and chic boutiques to big name stores and designer stores, it's all here in Winchester. There is something for everyone in Winchester. Even the most hard to please will delight at the many distinctive handmade items which can be found nestled amongst the many side streets and alleys - even from people’s back gardens!

Winchester is one of Hampshire’s most sought after places to live and is renowned for being one of the UK’s most affluent areas with a low crime rate, an excellent standard of living and a welcoming and friendly community placed within idyllic surroundings.

The next event being hosted by the UK Careers Fair will be held on April 24th between 10am - 2pm. The venue is the Guildhall Winchester, SO23 9GH. This beautiful Grade II listed building holds a huge amount of history and overlooks Abbey Gardens and St Giles’ Hill,  providing the largest multifunctional space in Winchester and is used for prestigious meetings, events and weddings.

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