The ultimate guide to York’s student areas
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It's that time of year again.
After a whole 8 WEEKS of settling in and selecting your quite obviously lifelong friends, it’s time to lock down a little piece of land which you will be calling home for the subsequent year. Who cares that your knowledge of York mostly consists of the 66 bus route? The markets have decided that the property ladder and its horrifically over-inflated rents are ready for you.
I'm going to attempt to provide a detailed and comprehensive outline of York’s residential areas so you don’t end up living in a place called Heworth. This can result in every single conversation you have with anyone, ever, being a well-drilled skit on how its ‘like a little bit north of Tang Hall and there’s a church and yeah it's ok cos I’ve got a bike lol’.
This guide likely won’t be as much use to returners, but who doesn’t enjoy reading an incredibly detailed and well-informed take on their neighbourhood.
For some reason Tang Hall gets a bad rep. Rent is cheap, it's full of students and it's generally a nice family area. Yes, there are fleets of thirty plus 12-year olds gliding around on bikes and gathering outside the co-op, but as long as you don't make eye contact with them you probably won't get harassed. The only major downside is that it's neither that close to town or uni, apart from that it's a great place to live.
Wide open boulevards of Victorian terraces interspersed with tennis courts and parks make up the grand duchy of Heworth, where you are more likely to bump into one of your lecturers than a fellow student. If you do manage to find a fellow student and fervently approach them, they will without a doubt be YSJ. You can see the minster from Heworth if that’s particularly important to you and in general it would be a lovely place to live, if it wasn’t situated on the moon.
Sandwiched between East and West campuses, Badger Hill is very convenient for all things uni. This is arguably where most of the positives stop however. Badger Hill seems to have more primary schools than people and is completely unnavigable during the school run. In addition to this, there have been rumours circulating over the last few years of an unidentified menace who is prone to public indecency.
Close to uni but far from town, Osbaldwick sits next to Tang Hall and Badger Hill. It's a nice area where you usually get good bang for your buck. Likely neighbours include some other students, families and retirees. This occasionally presents a problem when pumping hard hitting techno through the soundbar at 2am… apparently it's considered 'anti-social behaviour'. Osbaldwick also boasts possibly the largest B&Q in the nation, for all your DIY needs.
Heslington Road area
Home to one of the most important religious sites in North Yorkshire, Efes Pizza&kebab, Heslington road is a hotly contested patch of real estate. The houses are generally slightly unfurnished and mouldy, but the location (close to both uni and town) compensates. Expect to be surrounded by other students, with the mecca bingo symbolising the youthful dynamism of the area.
Hull Road / Thief Lane/ Green Dykes Lane area
This vague amalgamation of an area represents another very popular location. It lies conveniently close to uni and contains a host of affordable homes. Much like the Heslington road area, you will be surrounded by other students who you will inevitably see at the co-op when going for a post salvos meal deal to try and claw back some of the vitamins you sweated out the night before.
Fulford remains a mystery to me and many others but I am reliably informed that students do live here. From my understanding, it’s a nice residential area kept in order by the extensive barracks that sprawl over and around it. To first years it will be known as the place where the Aldi is and that is how it will remain for most people, bar the lesser spotted Fulford residents.
Now, as house viewings begin and friendship groups are gently torn apart, you will at least possess a sacred text, that provides you with a superficial and vague description of some of the general locations within York.
Happy house hunting!!