A luminous period family house by the sea

Edwardian period semi-detached family house by the sea house for sale

4 ways to identify the most outstanding Herne Bay area to live

Where to live in Herne Bay became our main concern after having decided that that would be the area of Kent that where we would buy our house. We started walking the length of the town and studying maps and reports. These were our top considerations when we were narrowing down our search. I hope they’ll be helpful for you too.

  1. Be near the beach. First of all we knew we wanted to be in walking distance of the beach, which meant we needed to find a house north of the Thanet Way (A299) and probably north of the railway line. That left a number of areas. At the West end of the town is an area known as Hampton. Then there’s the centre, with the high street and the pedestrianised Mortimer Street with its shops and the market. Just to the south of this central area are the leisure centre, a large Morrisons and ALDI, a park and a number of attractive streets with mainly Victorian and Edwardian houses. Most of these houses are relatively small, with the exception of some very large houses on Victoria Park and Queens Gardens.
  2. Avoid flood risk. We initially looked at some Victorian terraced houses at the pier end of Mortimer Street, but when I started looking into that area in detail, I found that the whole of the centre of the town from the high street to the park is susceptible to flooding, not just because the sea can overcome the sea wall (which has been improved since the last major flood), but also because the town is built on an underground stream, which runs through the park to one side of the pier and can back up and overflow if the conditions are right. Mickleburgh Hill sometimes has surface water running down the gutters, but the curbs are high and it’s never come anywhere near the pavement, let alone the house.
  3. Needs good parking. We looked at some houses on Carlton Road towards the Hampton end of town, but found the area was higgledy piggledy, with houses of different styles arranged in an apparently haphazard way. There were also problems with parking. Next we saw a couple of very nice terrace houses on South Road. These were appealing, but a bit on the small side and we were put off by the parking permit scheme.
  4. Walking distance to amenities. Many agents suggested that we look up the hill, to the east, near Beltinge village. Beltinge is considered the well-to-do end of town, it’s near the beach and has attractive architecture. However for us it was not really a serious consideration because it was far enough from the town centre that we would need to take the car to go to the main shops or to go to the gym, and walking to the station to take the train to London would have been out of the question.

That is how we narrowed down our search to the area of Herne Bay to the east of Canterbury Road and the north of the railway line. Much of this area is part of a conservation zone that includes some really stunning architecture.

The Edwardian and Victorian semis and detached houses in this area tend to have larger gardens than the mainly terrace houses to the west of Canterbury Road. Everything is more spaced out so there’s never any problem parking (and there’s no permit scheme). When tourists come in the summer, they don’t seem to venture east of Canterbury Road.

The area is several meters above the centre of the town so it doesn’t suffer from the same flood risk. And unlike Beltinge, it’s still possible to walk from this area to the main supermarkets, local shops and leisure centre within about ten minutes.