I hadn’t even heard of Maida Vale when I was living in London back in 2006. It probably had to do with being a DINKs couple. Living in a good school catchment area and near a park wasn’t exactly a priority for me. So when it came to finding somewhere to live in London with young kids the second time around I was clueless. Luckily, some of my old London friends had gone on to have kids and had moved to more family friendly areas like Wimbledon and Battersea and were happy to give their advice.
Funnily enough, it was one of my friends in Sydney that suggested Maida Vale as a suitable place to live. She had some friends who had recently moved there who raved about how perfect it was for young families. It wasn’t as good value as Wimbledon or Battersea, but it made up for that with it’s ideal location – only a stones throw away from the delights of Notting Hill, the shopping meccas of Oxford street and Westfield and the theatres and infamous nightlife of the West End. That’s why we left the sunny skies and beaches of Sydney to come to London after all! And we were so glad that we did (well maybe a little less glad now that Winter is approaching)…
In addition to it’s convenient location, Maida Vale is perfect for families with young children. There is a huge recreation park called Paddington Rec which has playgrounds, tennis courts, a gym, cafe, rose gardens and a pavilion with plenty of classes for kids. There are also a number of great cafes and restaurants around the area that offer highchairs, kids menus and even colouring in!
But the main drawcard, for me at least, is the support network that is Maida Vale Mums. I have basically built my life in London through this network. The friends I’ve met and the advice I’ve received through the Maida Vale Mums website and Facebook page has been invaluable. If you’re considering a move to London with kids, or have recently moved to Maida Vale, then http://www.maidavalemums.com/ should be your first port of call. It covers everything – from all the schools and nurseries in the area to what classes are on for kids. Its the go to website for everything Maida Vale. The Maida Vale Mums group on Facebook is also an amazing resource – any question you have will be answered here by the incredibly helpful and knowledgeable Maida Vale mums!
If you want to know what it is about Maida Vale that, in my opinion, makes Maida Vale one of the best (if not the best) places to live in London, then check out the posts to come in this category. Hopefully if (a) you’re considering a move to London, or (b) you have recently moved to Maida Vale, or (c) you live in Maida Vale but are about to have kids, this blog will be helpful to you!