This Gloucestershire town topped The Sunday Times’ ‘Best Places to Live 2021’ list thanks to its independent spirit, superb schools and green spaces. The town is full of character and charm, with a jumble of food markets and haberdasheries, stone facades and cheap takeaway joints. A spirited community is at the heart of this, with a strong sense of identity – ‘Stroud and Proud’ – which unites residents and visitors alike.

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If you’re looking to buy or rent a home in Stroud, you’ll find a good selection of detached and semi-detached family dwellings, many with large gardens. Prices are competitive compared to the surrounding area, while the town’s transport links are excellent and offer a choice of bus and train routes.

There are also a number of local doctors’ surgeries and dental practices with high ratings, plus NHS health centres and the nearby Stroud Hospital. And with plenty of OFSTED ‘Outstanding’ and ‘Good’ rated primary schools, including Uplands Community School and Randwick Church of England, Stroud is a great option for families, with a range of thriving nurseries too. The town also boasts a strong cultural offering, with music, art and theatre venues like The Sub Rooms, Museum in the Park, Stroud Valleys Artspace and Gallery Pangolin, as well as unique performance spaces and shops such as Made In Stroud.

Nature and wildlife are a big part of life in Stroud, with a variety of parks and green spaces to enjoy. The stunning sloping landscapes of the Cotswolds are ideal for walking, horse riding and cycling, while the town is dotted with picturesque villages that reflect rural life in the 21st century, including Saxon churches and thatched cottages. For a Letting Agency Gloucester and Stroud, visit /

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For a truly relaxing day out, head to Painswick Rococo Garden, where peacocks, waterfowl and deer wander the beautiful nine-acre parkland. For a more active day out, visit Rodmarton Manor for a history lesson and explore the spooky Woodchester Mansion, an unfinished Victorian Gothic house with a fascinating backstory (and rumoured to be haunted).

If you love arts and culture, you’ll be spoiled for choice in Stroud. See a show at the renowned The Sub Rooms, or head to a venue such as the charming Brunel Goods Shed, where up-and-coming acts and artists showcase their talents. There’s also the Museum in the Park, a fascinating local history museum located within a 17th Century stone house in Stratford Park.

The local arts and crafts scene is vibrant, with a great number of independent shops selling everything from handmade gifts to homemade skincare and beauty products.