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Top places to live in Warwickshire Kenilworth

Home to England's most romantic ruined castle where Robert Dudley would entertain Queen Elizabeth I, and one of Warwickshire’s three Michelin-starred restaurants. Enjoy long walks though Abbey Fields and the castle grounds. Part of our Top 200 Places to Live series.

WHY?

This historic market town is architecturally notable for its romantic castle ruins, once home to Robert Dudley whose alleged love affair with Elizabeth I was explored in Elizabeth, starring Cate Blanchett and Joseph Fiennes. The monarch visited the castle several times. Kenilworth has its own arts festival, a food festival and annual Two Castles Run. It’s also close to the University of Warwick on Gibbet Hill, Coventry.

EAT

Scoff and quaff at Michelin-starred and Muddy award-winning gastropub The Cross (reservations taken up to three months in advance), Harringtons-on-the Hill, Pomeroys Bistro, Indian Edge and Deli-on-the-Hill coffee shop. Popular pubs and bars include The Clarendon, The Almanack, Virgins & Castle and Kenilworth Cocktail Lounge.

SHOP

Waitrose, Sainsbury’s and a couple of great indie bookshops Kenilworth Books & The Tree House Bookshop (musician Warren Ellis, of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds is a patron). Other independents include The Farthing Gallery, Farmers Fayre farm shop and cafe at Stonleigh Park and third-generation family-run Smith’s Nurseries and Garden Centre. Luxury outdoor designer outlet Bicester Village with 160+ boutiques and restaurants is under an hour away.

NEARBY ATTRACTIONS

Kenilworth Castle and Elizabethan Garden – you can now climb to the top of the 18m high tower to see Elizabeth’s previously derelict private chamber after English Heritage built an impressive £1.1m viewing platform opening in 2014. Abbey Fields, a 68-acre park is just a few minutes’ walk from the town centre with a lake overlooking the castle and hosts tennis courts and children’s play area. It’s great for walks, picnics and sledging in the snow. Stately Grade I listed Stoneleigh Abbey, with its links to Jane Austen, is 10 minutes away by car.

AVERAGE HOUSE PRICE

£445,201 in the last year. Semi-detached properties sold for an average price of £379,596. Detached properties sold for an average of £614,153, with terraces fetching £322,606.

HOT PROPERTY

This barn conversion in the middle of the countryside is on the market for £800,000 with Mr & Mrs Clarke.

SCHOOLS

Several good and outstanding state primary and secondaries in and around town including Kenilworth School and Sixth Form. Crackley Hall School is a feeder primary for Catholic co-educational independent secondary Princethorpe College; Rugby School and Bilton Grange Prep are within easy reach with independents in Leamington Spa, Warwick and Coventry close too.

BEST KEPT SECRET

Daniel Craig and Rachel Weisz were rumoured to be house-hunting in the nearby exclusive village of Leek Wootton a few years ago. They apparently checked out a £5m former mill but declined so you won’t have James Bond as a neighbour, sadly.

COMMUTE

Vastly improved since the reopening of the town’s train station improving connections to Coventry, Birmingham, and London. Journey time to London in under 90 minutes.

View the full Top 200 Best Places to Live 

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Best Place to Live in Warwickshire Reader Vote

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Cast your vote by entering your email address and ticking the town or village you think deserves to win for the chance to bag £1,000 to spend at John Lewis, courtesy of our partner Strutt & Parker.

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Ilmington

Amazing views, pubs, gorgeous gardens, community village shop - oh and it's part of the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Beauty while still being in Warwickshire - what's not to love? Part of our Vote for Ilmington

Stratford-upon-Avon

Thespians, Michelin-starred restaurants and stunning Tudor-style buildings - oh and it's the birthplace of the Bard.

Meriden

Known as the historic centre of England, this small village punches above its weight on the pub front and has easy access to local towns and London.

Styvechale

From ghost town to city of culture, ‘Cov’ is the birthplace of poet Philip Larkin, author of Jack Reacher Lee Child and home of 2-Tone.

Kenilworth

Home to England's most romantic ruined castle where Robert Dudley would entertain Queen Elizabeth I, and one of Warwickshire’s three Michelin-starred restaurants.

Leamington Spa

With Regency architecture to match that of Cheltenham's or Brighton's, this studenty spa town is a player in the global computer gaming industry.

Henley-in-Arden

The one-mile long High Street here is a conservation area with more than 150 buildings of historic interest, close to the lush ancient Forest of Arden and Stratford.

Warwick

Famously home to one of the country’s finest medieval fortresses - Warwick Castle - and where Tolkien got married.

Know another brilliant place to live in Warwickshire?

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