Our Town

Leamington is regularly listed as one of the best places to live in the country.  Its position in the Heart of England means that there is easy access by road (M40, M42, M1, M5, M6, M45) and rail (three franchises) to most of the UK and to the rest of the world from Birmingham International Airport.

The River Leam flows though the centre of the town to Warwick and Stratford upon Avon as a tributary to the river Avon.  Along the Leam in Leamington Spa there is a chain of parks and reserves, of which the best known are Jephson Gardens and the Pump Room Gardens.  The former contains fountains, trees and flowers, the latter is the “village green” of the town.  The Pump Room Gardens have recently been transformed following a million pound grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund. The Victorian bandstand has been completely restored, new flower beds planted and the seating greatly increased. A year-round programme of events is scheduled to follow the completion of the work.

To the south the Grand Union canal linking Birmingham and London provides opportunities for walking, cycling and for travel by narrowboat throughout the canal system. The popularity of this can be seen by watching the boat and towpath traffic during holiday periods.

Today Leamington is a busy regional centre and a popular residential town. The beauty of its Regency architecture together with its extensive parks and gardens attracts year-round visitors. The many students from neighbouring universities who have chosen to live here also make an important contribution to local life.  There is an extensive range of shopping opportunities, both in the major high street stores and the many independent small shops for visitors and residents.  Cafes, bars and a range of international restaurants are thriving.  Markets and fairs are held in the town centre and in the Pump Room Gardens all year round.

Also known as Silicon Spa, Leamington is at the heart of the Digital Media industry. In 2016, it was listed as the only electronic creative cluster in the West Midlands.

A lively cultural scene adds to the interest of the town.  Music ranges from choirs and renowned chamber ensembles to children’s concerts in the Royal Spa Centre.  The Art Gallery and Museum within the Royal Pump Rooms has an interesting permanent collection and houses many touring exhibitions.  Independent galleries also flourish.  There is a theatre and a small cinema at the Royal Spa Centre and a four-screen cinema at Vue.  There is easy access to Warwick Arts Centre at Warwick University and the Royal Shakespeare Company in Stratford upon Avon – both less than 10 miles away.

The railway station is within easy walking distance of the centre, with frequent direct services to London and Birmingham by Chiltern Railways and from Bournemouth and Southampton in the south to  Newcastle, Edinburgh and Glasgow in the north by Cross Country.  The Cross Country line takes about 40 minutes to reach Birmingham International Airport.  West Midlands Railway offer a local service to a wide range of stations in, of course, the West Midlands.

And to show the investment isn’t all for the trendy adults! Victoria Park on a Sunday morning.

Skateboard arena

The future? The Leamington Society works to make sure it remains a thriving town. A Neighbourhood Plan has been approved in a local referendum (by 83% of votes cast). This will give the Town Council extra control over local affairs and deliver extra income to spend on local infrastructure.  In the medium-term future there are plans to revitalise areas of Old Town providing a Creative Quarter as a base for the increasing number of IT and other creative industries located in the town.

Wikipedia has lots more detail; see Leamington Spa.