Situated in the heart of England, Leicestershire shares borders with eight other counties and is known for its rich history, scenic landscapes, and bustling city life.

In this area guide, we uncover the many facets of Leicestershire, from the rural charm of its quaint villages and market towns such as Melton Mowbray and Ashby-de-la-Zouch, to the exciting cultural opportunities presented by the city of Leicester. We delve into its historical heritage, iconic landmarks, vibrant lifestyle, recommended living areas, top schools, and excellent transport connections to give you a fuller understanding of why so many people wish to call Leicestershire home.

History of Leicestershire

Leicestershire's history is a rich tapestry woven over centuries. Prehistoric artefacts and Roman ruins dot the landscape, with the town of Leicester being one of the oldest cities in England, tracing its history back to the Roman conquest. The county saw significant development in the industrial revolution, becoming a hub for textile and footwear manufacturing. Today, Leicestershire seamlessly blends ancient heritage with a modern outlook, maintaining time-honoured traditions like cheese-making in Melton Mowbray while embracing contemporary advancements in sectors like space science and technology.


Leicestershire is home to several iconic landmarks. The National Space Centre in Leicester offers fantastic exhibits on space exploration. The historic site of Bosworth Battlefield, where King Richard III met his untimely demise, is steeped in history. Bradgate Park, the probable birthplace of Lady Jane Grey - the Nine Days Queen, also offers incredible vistas and wildlife.

Landmarks we love

  • Curve Theatre, Leicester: A modern performance space that stages a dynamic range of productions, this artistic venue showcases the vibrancy of Leicester’s cultural scene.
  • Rutland Water: A spectacular man-made reservoir, known for its captivating beauty and outdoor activities such as bird watching, cycling, and sailing.
  • Foxton Locks, Market Harborough: A fascinating feat of engineering, this ten lock staircase on the Grand Union Canal is a magnet for history and canal buffs.
  • Belvoir Castle, Grantham: A magnificent stately home, Grade I listed building with a rich history and beautifully landscaped gardens.
  • King Richard III Visitor Centre, Leicester: A fascinating modern museum that tells the intriguing story of the controversial king's life and death, and reveals the discovery of his remains.
  • Top 10 things to do in Leicestershire

    • Visit Leicester's vibrant city centre: With its diverse range of shopping, excellent restaurants, and fantastic nightlife.
    • Explore the Great Central Railway: A lovingly preserved heritage steam railway.
    • Immerse in the beauty of Bradgate Park: Spot deer and enjoy breathtaking views, history and geology.
    • Experience traditional Melton Mowbray pork pies making: Visit a local specialist bakery to see how these famous pies are made.
    • Discover the King Richard III Visitor Centre: Uncover the incredible story of the king's life and death.
    • Cycle around Rutland Water: Britain's largest artificial lake, one of the most enjoyable ways to appreciate the county's natural beauty.
    • Explore Curve Theatre: A state-of-the-art performing arts centre offering a rich program of dance, music, comedy, and drama.
    • Visit the National Space Centre: With six galleries, including the UK's largest planetarium, it's a fun and educational day out.
    • Step back in time at Bosworth Battlefield: The site of one of the most significant battles in English history.
    • Appreciate the majesty of Belvoir Castle: A grand residence with grand interiors and stunning gardens.

    Our recommended areas to live in Leicestershire

    • Leicester: As the beating heart of the county, this vibrant city offers unparalleled cultural experiences, excellent schools, and robust healthcare facilities. It's also home to large corporations and small businesses, making it ideal for career-focused individuals and families.
    • Market Harborough: Known for its quality of life, Market Harborough is a market town with a thriving community, exceptional schools, and leisure facilities. It also boasts excellent rail links to London.
    • Loughborough: A town with strong ties to academia, thanks to Loughborough University. It's a favorite among students, educators, and professionals. The thriving sport scene is a major draw, as is the high standard of education.
    • Hinckley: A busy town located close to the M1 and M69, making it a superior choice for commuters. It offers an attractive combination of good schools, plentiful amenities, and affordable housing.
    • Coalville: Benefiting from a location near the M1 and close to East Midlands Airport, Coalville is an ideal place for those seeking a balanced lifestyle. With affordable housing, good schools, and tranquil countryside, it's excellent for families and young professionals.

    Best schools in Leicestershire

    Leicestershire has a strong network of state and independent schools. The county boasts several 'Outstanding' state schools as rated by Ofsted, including Beauchamp College, Loughborough High School, and Ratcliffe College. Independent schools are well-represented with prestigious institutions like Leicester Grammar School and Oakham School. Beyond secondary education, Loughborough University is internationally renowned, especially for programs in sports and engineering.

    Transport links in Leicestershire

    Leicestershire's central location provides excellent transport links. The M1 and M6 motorways offer quick access to the north and south, while the East Midlands Airport connects the county to major destinations worldwide. Regular trains from Leicester, Loughborough, and Market Harborough reach London in little over an hour. Furthermore, the extensive bus and cycle network enables easy local travel.

    In conclusion, Leicestershire offers a delightful mix of city amenities, historic charm, and country living. It's a county that prides itself on its strong community spirit, excellent lifestyle choices, and quality educational opportunities. Its efficient transport system and thriving economy further cement its stand as a desirable place for individuals or families looking to relocate. Whether you're drawn to the bustling city life of Leicester, the tranquil green spaces of Rutland, or the family-friendly towns like Market Harborough or Hinckley, Leicestershire truly is an excellent choice for an enriching living experience.

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