A small suburb in Huddersfield is tempting Manchester commuters across the Yorkshire border with its stunning scenery and gorgeous new homes. Just off the M62 and less than 40 minutes drive from the center of Manchester, Birchencliffe is proving to be a desirable location.
The area has even been visited by Hollywood royalty in recent months. Back in January, Samuel L Jackson visited the Da Sandro restaurant as he took a break from filming for a new Marvel series in the area.
One estate agent working in Birchencliffe says house prices in the area have rocketed and new-build homes are springing up across the suburb all the time, with a number of new estates in the process of being built. Manchester Evening News’ sister website Yorkshire Live spent a day in the suburb to see what life is really like in the area.
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‘A lot of people are moving here from Manchester’
Claire Ramsbottom, of Peter David Properties, has worked in Birchencliffe for three years. She estimates the price of a typical home in the suburb has shot up by around £60,000 during that time.
“If we get any houses up here, they fly off,” she told Yorkshire Live. “We have the new development at the top of the road and there is a lot of interest in properties up there.”
Gesturing to the surrounding streets, Claire said: “There are some really nice semi-detached homes; it is just a nice area, really close to the M62, not far from Huddersfield and not far from Brighouse – it is quite a central location.
“Lindley is really popular too and that is still walking distance away. Houses are not quite as expensive as central Lindley, but it is still really popular here.”
Claire revealed a lot of people who live and work in Manchester are ditching the busy city for Birchencliffe due to the short (ish) commute. “Manchester is so expensive to live in,” she said. “You get a lot more for your money here than you would over there.
“Loads of new builds are coming up around here. I think that is because it is such a sought-after location.
Claire said the estate agent’s location, on the side of the busy Halifax Road, is perfect for business. She even suggested it is more desirable than owning a business in the center of Huddersfield.
“Once they know we are here it is quite obvious, but we do get a lot of footfall here because of Greggs and Tesco next door,” she said. “I think it is a better location than a town center estate agents. We get a lot of cars driving past and we have seen an increase in the number of customers coming through the door.”
‘The area is beautiful – people keep coming back’
Enrico Deriu is the restaurant manager at the ever-popular Da Sandro on Halifax Road. He described Birchencliffe as a beautiful area and said the restaurant’s growing reputation draws in people from across the country, partly down to its close proximity to the M62.
“Our secret is fresh food, people keep coming back. People come from Manchester and Leeds because we are so close to the motorway,” he said. Describing the area, Enrico said: “It is more popular now, there are a lot of new buildings about – it is a good area. The houses cost quite a lot and we get big families here.”
welcome hollywood royalty
Diners and staff at Da Sandro were left gobsmacked when Samuel L Jackson walked through the doors of the restaurant in January and casually asked for a table for seven. He was seated at the back of the restaurant, as he had not booked in advance, and was immediately recognized by another diner.
Recalling the day he served Hollywood royalty, Enrico said: “He did not say he was coming and just walked through. A customer recognized him so one of my waiters went to ask if it was him.
“He said ‘yes’ but that he did not want to be disturbed while he was eating. He said that, after the food, we could have a nice talk. He really enjoyed the food. He had a steak with veg – he said it was all good. A lot of people come here; Huddersfield Town players come here to eat.”
‘We get a lot of people coming to see what is happening’
Wendy Armstrong has worked as a team leader at St Phillip’s community center for more than 10 years and helps to run a holiday and after-school club for children.
“We have loads of parents who ring up who want to use the facilities – it is well received,” she told Yorkshire Live. “When it comes to holidays, and parents are working, it is nice for them to have somewhere to send their kids. It is a very rewarding job.”
Wendy said a number of other activities take place at the centre, which is open seven days a week, such as fitness classes and a ‘tea dance’.
“It has been here for years and we have different things going on. It is a good center for the people in the community to actually use. People are aware of it and we get a lot of people who come here to see what is happening .”
‘The community are very supportive, polite and nice’
Sarah Gerrard works as a sales marketing manager at Briar Court Hotel in Halifax Road. She said the hotel tends to get a lot of “passing trade”.
“Some people stay for leisure and some may come for a wedding. People travel from down south to come and visit their family and friends,” she said. “We do get a few local people staying, but not many.”
Sarah, who does not live in the Huddersfield suburb, described the community as “supportive, polite and nice” but said there was “not much going on” in Birchencliffe.
“We can nip up to Lindley, which is quite nice – but it seems like a very nice area. There is nothing untoward about it,” she said.
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