Leicestershire is proud to boast that it is one of the most vibrant and multicultural cities in the United Kingdom, with Leicester having the largest Asian population in the world outside of India. Our guide to Leicester highlights just a few of the benefits of moving to the UK’s best-hidden treasure (but don’t tell everyone because it’s a secret!);
A wealth of history and culture await you. Our very own Narborough Road was named as the most multicultural streets in the UK following research by the London School of Economics in 2016, with proprietors coming from 22 different countries of birth across four different continents! The Diwali lights switch on takes place annually on The Golden Mile, and is arguably one of the biggest and most famous Diwali celebrations outside of India- a truly one-of-a-kind experience. Other festivals held annually include the Caribbean Carnival, Eid Festival, Leicester Comedy Festival, and Leicester Pride. ‘Leicestertonians’ certainly know how to party in style!
Leicester is also one of the oldest recorded cities in England, and it is believed that the Romans first arrived here in AD 47. The Roman Road Fosse Way provides an abundance of history, and the remains of Roman baths can still be seen at the Jewry Wall Museum. The Last Plantagenet was famously slain at the Battle of Bosworth, with Richard III’s remains recently being discovered in a car park. The former king of England is now interred in Leicester Cathedral. The 16th Century Bradgate House lies in ruins at Bradgate Park, and is said to be the birthplace of Lady Jane Grey- our countries Queen for nine days before she was executed.
There is so much history and culture within the city and county that we could just go on, but why should we? It would be much better for you to just experience it for yourselves.
Being at the centre of the country allows for fantastic commuting links for any professional. The A6 and A46 provide great access to Loughborough, Lincoln, Northampton, Peterborough and beyond. The M69 provides easy links with the M6 and M42, with fantastic access to Coventry, Birmingham, and Wolverhampton. The M1 is a straight link to Nottingham, Derby, Milton Keynes and London. We also have a brilliant train station with direct links to London St Pancreas in little over an hour.
Leicester is lucky to have a mixed variety of public and private schooling, with many of them performing well above average. In Oadby, Beauchamp College is highly regarded by locals and is voted as outstanding by Ofsted. Nearby Gartree and Manor High Schools are also great. Loughborough Grammar School for boys is listed in the top 100 best UK schools for A-level results and Leicester Grammar School and Leicester High School for girls are listed in the top 100 best UK schools for GCSE results.
All of Leicestershire’s universities are highly regarded institutions. Loughborough University ranks 7th in the countries top universities, with the University of Leicester ranked 34th and DeMontfort University ranked 70th. The universities offer a diverse range of subjects, specialising in sports, medicine, space sciences and arts.
Leicester was the birthplace of the development of DNA fingerprinting. Back in the 1980s, it was developed by professor of Genetics, Sir Alec Jefferies. It was quickly implemented to identify a killer who was, due to the technology, charged and convicted.
We are lucky to have the opportunity to have such a fantastic space science programme at the University of Leicester. Working closely with the National Space Centre, based just outside of the city centre, huge developments They were instrumental in the design and building of Beagle 1 and Beagle 2, which were launched into space and sent to Mars.
There are plans to build the Leicester Space Park in the near future, which will be a leading hub for the translation of space research and earth observation data for both potential research and business purposes.
Other huge research projects are currently undergoing in the areas of cancer, diabetes and studying social justice within cultural and media economies.
Over recent years, and currently, huge investments have been made in improving the shopping experience in Leicester and Leicestershire. From Thurmaston Shopping Complex, the Highcross in Leicester and the ongoing developments in Loughborough, Hinckley at Fosse Park in Enderby, the shopping experience in Leicester is improving daily and provides a wide range of products for any discerning shopper. For those wishing for a more bespoke shopping experience, Leicester boasts the jewellery quarter in Belgrave Gate, St Martins Parade, The Golden Mile in Rushey Mead, Beaumont Leys Shopping Centre, Allandale Road and Francis Street in Stoneygate, the Cosmopolitan area of Clarendon Park the old market town of Market Harborough.
There is plenty to do if you love being outdoors. If you don’t want to stray far from the City then you can enjoy a serene walk alongside the River Soar or visit Castle Park, Victoria Park or Abbey Park where along with enjoyable countryside scenery in a city setting, they also host many events across the year. Venturing slightly further out, you can experience Knighton Park, Braunstone Park, Aylestone Meadows or Shady Lane Arboretum in Evington. Further across Leicestershire is Bradgate Park and Swithland Wood in Anstey and Swithland. The Uk’s ‘Only Main Line Heritage Railway’ provides a unique experience travelling through Loughborough, Quorn and Woodhouse, Rothley and Leicester on a steam train. The National Forest embraces 200 square miles, including a large part of Leicestershire, with the historic clay and mining villages/ towns of Coalville, Swadlincote, and Ashby-de-la-Zouch. Definitely a must-see for all outdoor enthusiasts.
When the weather isn’t that great, there are still plenty of things to do in Leicester. The Meridian Leisure Complex hosts a variety of activities and restaurants, including a kids entertainment centre, cinema, and bowling facility. There are several more cinemas throughout the county, numerous museums, casinos and bingo halls. Leicester Leys Leisure Centre has a great swimming pool for kids, with flumes and a wave machine. If you don’t fancy getting wet, they also have a climbing wall with affordable lessons for all you beginners.
Due to Leicester’s vast history, there is a wealth of Victorian and Edwardian homes, alongside the beautiful bay fronted 1930s semis. A popular theme within new builds at the moment is the trendy conversions of the county’s many old mills and factories, providing contemporary living in beautiful amalgamations of the old and the new. Many new housing developments are being built to accommodate the rising popularity of this wonderful county. In particular, the developments in Hamilton, Leicester Forest East, Thorpe Astley, Countesthorpe, Humberstone and Houghton on the Hill are becoming sought after places to live.
With several hospitals across the county, you can be sure that if you need it you will receive excellent health care. The hospital at Glenfield is nationally recognised for heart disease, lung cancer, and breast care. And thanks to the world-renowned medical programmes at the University of Leicester, research is right here at the forefront for other serious medical illnesses such as diabetes and cancer. Huge regeneration projects have been undergone to improve the Accident and Emergency departments for both adults and children, streamlining the process and optimising patient care. You are definitely in the right place if you get ill!
Finally the sports section!! Who can argue with the success of the counties sports achievements!? From Leicester City Football Club impossibly winning the Premier League in 2016 (and making many Leicestertonians a pretty profit in the process!), the Tigers Rugby Club see equal successes in Premiership rugby. We are also proud of the Leicestershire County Cricket Club who are one of eighteen first-class county clubs and the Jelson Homes Leicester Riders who are Britain’s oldest professional Basketball Club.