Why you should move to Nantwich
Jenny Schippers & Jackie Gregory
- Credit: Kirsty Thompson
People have settled in Nantwich for centuries, it is mentioned in the Domesday Book and has had a market since 1500. And it's never been a more popular as a place to set up home
One of the earliest settlements in Cheshire, Nantwich is a bustling market town that proudly celebrates its rich heritage while encouraging exciting and forward-thinking businesses to settle there.
At the southern edge of the Cheshire Plain, this vibrant hub has become one of the regions shining lights, offering residents and visitors alike a vast array of independent establishments to eat, drink and shop.
Located on the old London to Chester trading route, Nantwich is awash with culturally significant sights and listed buildings including the Nantwich aqueduct designed by Thomas Telford, and the pretty Georgian properties along the Welsh Row.
The Town Square, festooned with bunting and adorned with spectacular floral displays, is a natural meeting point and an ideal place to begin your day with coffee outside Nantwich Bookshop.
The town’s traditional indoor market hall opens three times a week on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, welcoming local artisans and regional suppliers to display their produce.
Alongside the weekly outdoor markets, Nantwich hosts a farmer’s market on the last Saturday of the month and September 2022, sees the welcome return of the annual Nantwich Food Festival.
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In previous years, this popular foodie event has attracted more than 40,000 visitors across the three days. Considered one of the largest free-to-enter food events in the UK, Nantwich Food Festival will feature cookery demonstrations from local and celebrity chefs, live music and family-friendly street entertainment.
Begin with a stop at Chatwins Bakery, in the main square, opposite the imposing St Mary’s Church. Established in the town more than 100 years ago, this thriving family business continues to serve its loyal customers with sweet and savoury treats.
For great coffee, Café Cortado in Princes Court on Beam Heath Way, Café de Paris on Hospital Street and Olea on Church Lane come highly recommended.
For those seeking a child-friendly sanctuary, the Hive Café on Pepper Street has a delightful kids' corner to keep little ones entertained.
Close by, Miss Marmalades continues to delight with its famous freak shakes, homemade cakes, and vegan-friendly menu, while Nantwich institution Ginger & Pickles on Mill Street is a go-to for big brunches and dainty afternoon teas.
The perfect Insta-friendly venues for long lunches and evening meals include Deadwood Smokehouse on Beam Street, The Townhouse on Mill Street and the stunning half-timbered fine-dining Churches Mansion. Dinner at St. Martha on Hospital Street is a slice of pure Greek heaven, and Romazzino on High Street delivers an authentic Italian menu in decadent surroundings.
For traditional pub fare, The Leopard Nantwich Tap on London Road, The Boars Head at Walgherton and The Olde Barbridge Inn on the banks of the Shropshire Union Canal close to the Barbridge Marina, do not disappoint.
Combine a visit to Six Nantwich on Hospital Street, with Jordy’s Pizza pop-up every Thursday, to sample wood-fired pizza alongside the finest selection of craft beers, signature cocktails and small-batch spirits, including Nantwich Gin.
Nantwich is renowned for its quirky, independent businesses displaying everything from homeware, food and drink, gifts, and clothing. At Home With The Rudds, housed within a magnificent half-timbered building on the Town Square, is a luxury interior and lifestyle store that has got everyone talking.
With a sister store in the Cotswolds, the beautiful products displayed within reflect the clean and simple Cotswold-style that would not be out of place in the Daylesford Farm Shop. For those with a passion for stationery and the creative arts, The Little Paper Shop on Hospital Street should be a pilgrimage. Stocking all things paper from personalised art prints, books, writing sets and homeware plus creatives workshops, those unable to visit the store can shop on the website.
Linen Lawn Studio on Pillory Street is an independent British female fashion brand made entirely by hand. Crafting exquisite designs using iconic prints including Liberty, this slow and sustainable fashion label is proving a big hit in Nantwich. Another newly-opened business worth a visit is Charlie & Co on Church Street, selling British-made outfits, gifts, and accessories for four-legged friends.
To accompany the shopping experience, customers are welcome to enjoy a drink, and a puppuccino for their pets, in the dog-friendly café.
The Riverside Loop is an easy three-mile circular walk starting in Riverside Park close to the centre of Nantwich. This waymarked walk, incorporating the River Weaver, Nantwich Lake, and the Shropshire Union Canal, is flat throughout and takes approximately one and a half hours.
Use the car park on Shrewbridge Road and join the walk towards the lake, stopping along the way for takeaway coffee and cake from The Hub, before crossing the footbridge towards the bridleway. Although most of the route is along sealed pathways and is ideal for all ages, there is a section of the walk that traverses fields that may be muddy in parts and includes steps.
After crossing fields with uninterrupted views across the Cheshire Plain, the walk picks up the canal at Green Lane Bridge. Here turn right towards Marsh Lane Bridge and onwards towards the aqueduct that carries the canal over Chester Road, before dropping down the steps and following the Welsh Row back into the centre of Nantwich.
Be sure to stop by Cheshire Cupcakes, open Wednesday to Saturday, a short distance away on Pillory Street, to reward your endeavours with a delicious cupcake or brownie.
In the spotlight – Nick Wadeson, owner, Three Wrens Gin
We are proud to have been Nantwich's local distillery since 2019 and we would not want to produce our gins anywhere else. The surrounding area is gorgeous, and the people are amazing; there is such a strong emphasis on supporting local, and we are proud to call it home.
The town itself has a lovely, relaxed vibe, with great pubs, restaurants, and bars, many of which we are fortunate to work with. Visitors are always welcome at Three Wrens and our open-door policy has been a great success. You can pop in and see us distilling anytime, take a tour around the facilities, and even join our gin school on a weekend.
Why I Love it here – Sarah Callander Beckett, managing director, Combermere Abbey Estate
We are very fortunate to live only six miles from the wonderful historic market town of Nantwich, with its historical ties to Combermere Abbey. It was Hugh de Malbanc, Lord of Nantwich who endowed the abbey lands in 1133. The eclectic mix of historic buildings sitting alongside a wide range of independent shops draws people in from miles around. It is really a go-to destination for visitors to the South Cheshire area – and its weekly market and variety of restaurants give the foodie brigade lots to get excited about.
Why move here
John Baker, partner, Baker Wynne & Wilson
Nantwich is second only to Chester in the wealth of historic buildings it has. It’s a charming riverside market town, surrounded by Cheshire dairy farmland and not too big – with a population of 18,000.
Since the end of lockdown, sales have really taken off as Nantwich is a good place in which to work from home and has strong communication links, being four miles from Crewe and just 10 miles to Junction 16. There are eight primary schools, and two good secondary schools with sixth forms. There has been lots of new build over the past 10 years, but it still feels like a market town.
Louise Chapman, branch manager, Wright Marshall, Nantwich
Nantwich is a hidden treasure that has been winning over a new following recently. It has restaurants, cafés, shops, boutiques, a flourishing food scene and laidback, timeless charm. It offers properties ranging from period residences to new builds and terraced cottages, suitable for all budgets.
There are country walks just beyond the town and along the canal. Local attractions include Combermere Abbey, Cholmondeley Castle, Snugburys Ice Cream Farm, Three Gins Distillery, Rookery Hall Hotel and Spa, Crewe Hall and in the town itself, a weekly market and frequent artisan, antique and makers' markets. Annual events include the Sealed Knot Society’s Holly Holy Day – a re-enactment of the Battle of Nantwich in the Civil War, a music and jazz festival and Nantwich Food Festival.
The Barn, Whitehaven Lane, Burland
A barn conversion that retains its sense of history, with a dining room, sitting room, living room, breakfast kitchen, utility room and cloakroom. It has a master bedroom with dressing area and en suite, three further bedrooms and a family bathroom. Gardens and a paddock.
Four Oaks Farm, Aston Juxta Mondrum
Standing in a large garden with fruit trees, a wildlife pond and adjoining paddock, this restored farmhouse has a living room, garden room, sitting room/bedroom five, kitchen diner, laundry room and shower room, four bedrooms and a family bathroom.