|Homes sold in the last 12 months||150||262||238||366|
|Average house prices||£120,852||£180,821||£280,347||£159,728|
Taunton is Somerset's thriving county town, and its biggest. In this forward-looking place, bustling modern life sits comfortably alongside reminders of an eventful history which dates back to Saxon times.
Residents benefit from all the amenities of a busy town, with many opportunities for employment, and some great shopping, yet still have easy access to west Somerset's beautiful, undulating countryside.
Property in and around Taunton encompasses a wide range of houses.
Characterful cottages are often available in the popular villages surrounding the town, which also benefit from country views and decent-sized gardens. Closer to the centre, there are more modern homes, flats and terraces.
House prices in Taunton are slightly higher than in some parts of Somerset, but still more affordable than other areas of the UK, despite the upward trend of property values in the south west since the turn of the millennium.
The town centre abounds with historic buildings, from sixteenth century almshouses to Taunton Castle, home of the Somerset County Museum, to the Priory and Tudor Tavern, now a coffee shop, which dates from 1578.
The town is Somerset's retail capital, with all the top names in shopping on hand, alongside a selection of independent outlets. A large indoor shopping centre, officially called Orchard, is still referred to locally as the "Pig Market", since one operated on the site between 1614 and 1882.
Bath Place is a quaint area of town just off the High Street and the ideal spot to look for arts and crafts and specialist foods.
The extensive local facilities include two theatres, swimming pools, gyms, an ice rink and a good range of pubs and eateries. Meanwhile cricket fans will love having Somerset's county ground on the doorstep.
There are several nature reserves locally, and nearby South Taunton Streams is an urban wetland. Nearby parks include Vivary, on the site of a medieval fish farm, Goodlands and Victoria parks.
The town's railway station is on the Bristol to Exeter line, and there are also services across the West Country and the UK. There are hourly trains to London Paddington, and typically one fast and one slow hourly train to Bristol and Exeter.
There are also good road links. The M5 is close to the town, as are other major routes like the A38 and A358.
Families with school-age children are well catered for, with four secondary schools in Taunton. There is specialist sixth form provision geared towards sports and performing arts. Further education is provided by Somerset College of Arts and Technology.
All in all, with its many excellent amenities and readily accessible breathing space, not to mention its stunning rural backdrop, Taunton is perfectly placed to offer families, couples and single people a superb standard of living.
Source acknowledgement: House price data produced by Land Registry
This material was last updated on 28 February 2014.
It covers the period from 03 January 1995
to 31 January 2014.
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