Spotlight on Burnham – our estate agent’s view
Thursday, July 21, 2016
Burnham village lies west of Slough close to the M4. Transport links are excellent, with mainline railway stations at Burnham and Taplow, connecting to London Paddington, Slough and Reading. Journey times are set to improve further with the advent of Crossrail in 2018 and are already raising property prices in the area. So what does the future hold for Burnham’s local property market? Mark Jones, our Burnham estate agent, says “The impact of Crossrail is likely to turn this pretty village into commuter heaven with journey times to Paddington and Canary Wharf of 32 and 49 minutes respectively. Crossrail launches in 2018, but is already boosting house prices along its proposed route. Burnham property prices are already above the UK average and the "Crossrail effect" could add a further 10% and more. Buyers looking for sound investments should find Burnham a relatively safe prospect. Housing stock is varied with old cottages alongside neo Georgian houses and contemporary eco-homes giving buyers a wide selection. With Crossrail on the way, if Burnham can maintain its village atmosphere, it could well be the best of both worlds.”
The village itself dates back to Roman times although it was first recorded in the Domesday Book in 1086 as Burneham meaning "homestead on a stream". Fast forward a few centuries and there's a real sense of village life with the outstanding (OFSTED) Dropmore School, Burnham Grammar School, clubs and societies like rowing, bridge, opera and sailing all keeping the community spirit alive. Recently modernised Burnham Park www.burhampark.co.uk hosted the summer fete on July 9th and many other social events throughout the year such as the donkey derby organised by the Rotary Club. This annual event attracts about 3,000 people and raises £10-15,000 for charities such as Marie Curie Cancer Care and Alexander Devine Children's Hospice Service.
For foodies, The Blackwood Arms and Akash Tandoori (both with a Certificate of Excellence) top Tripadvisor’s list of recommended restaurants in Burnham, offering affordable, relaxed dining. Further afield at Bray, Heston Blumenthal's Michelin-starred restaurant, the Fat Duck, and Michel Roux’s The Waterside Inn take eating out to another level if you can manage to get a table.
Local leisure facilities include archery, clubs for cricket, football and tennis and Burnham Beeches Golf Club. In 2012, when the London Olympics were in full swing, all eyes were on nearby Dorney Lake, a world-class rowing and flat-water canoeing centre set in 450 acres of spectacular parkland. Here Team GB’s rowing and sprint canoe teams took a record haul of gold medals and put the Olympic venue firmly on the map.
Over the years the Grade 1 listed stately home Cliveden has hosted elite society parties and lavish entertainment with famous names from Charlie Chaplin to Winston Churchill but it is perhaps best known as the starting point of the Profumo Affair that brought the British parliament to its knees in 1963. Today, Cliveden is one of the world's finest luxury hotels, surrounded by 376 acres of magnificent National Trust gardens www.nationaltrust.org.uk . It enjoys panoramic views over the River Thames and, from the Boathouse, you can take a champagne cruise – the height of indulgence.
Just north of Burnham is a 540 acre stretch of ancient woodland, ideal for outdoor pursuits and family picnics. Burnham Beeches was saved from development in 1879 and has since been managed by the City of London Corporation. The woods are home to more than 60 species of plants and animals that are either rare or under threat nationally and the area is protected as a National Nature Reserve, and Site of Special Scientific Interest.
Nearby Pinewood, Shepperton and Bray Studios often use Burnham Beeches as a location due to its outstanding natural beauty. Robin Hood Prince of Thieves, the Carry On films from the 1960s and 70s, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1 are among the films that have been shot here. Filming is restricted to no more than 20 days per year and to certain areas in recognition of the woodland’s importance for wildlife and all revenue generated is used for its upkeep.
For more information or to see our properties for sale or to let in and around Burnham please contact our Burnham office.