Living in Hampshire

Hampshire lies between England’s south central coastline and the North Wessex Downs. If you want to live in a lively town or city there are plenty to choose from. If country villages, coastal walks and weekend sailing are more your thing, we have it covered. You will also be spoilt for choice by the wealth of parks and woods, historical attractions, cultural landmarks, modern shopping centres, cosmopolitan restaurants and sports facilities, all in easy reach from wherever you decide to live.

Enjoy the great outdoors

Hampshire is almost entirely surrounded by areas of outstanding natural beauty, with the New Forest National Park in the south-west corner, the North Wessex Downs along the top border and the rolling South Downs National Park encompassing a large chunk of the county to the east. This means that whether you are working in our hospital in Winchester, Basingstoke or Andover, you will never be that far from the countryside. People come from across the UK and around the world to enjoy the natural environment that you will find on your doorstep, so be sure to take advantage of the country pubs, scenic walks and cycle paths. Challenge yourself to a four-mile hike up St Catherine’s Hill in Winchester, maybe, or walk along the open woodland in the Queen Elizabeth Country Park (near Petersfield) and climb Butser Hill, the highest point in the South Downs.

Cultural attractions

Hampshire is awash with cultural attractions. The Winchester Discovery Centre in the capital town’s beautiful historic Corn Exchange is home to a museum and art gallery and next door to the Edwardian style 400 seat Theatre Royal. The Everyman cinema in Winchester offers a new spin on traditional cinema visits, with guests relaxing on sofas and drinking wine while they watch.

In Andover, the Lights entertainment centre has a full programme of professional music, theatre and dance throughout the year while Andover Museum tells the story of the town and the nearby Danebury Hillfort. The town also has a vibrant arts scene, with many local galleries and regular exhibitions.

You’ll find three cultural venues in Basingstoke, all run by the Anvil Arts charity, including The Anvil (one of the top 5 concert halls in the country), The Forge studio and The Haymarket, a 400 seater theatre hosting plays and musicals. Head down to Southampton and you can catch West End musicals on tour at Mayflower Theatre, with a 2,300 seat capacity making it the largest theatre on the south coast. Alternatively, catch a film at the state-of-the-art 10 screen Showcase Cinema de Lux in Westquay South and find yourself looking at a giant wall-to-wall screen with an immersive sound system.

Awash with history

The county town of Winchester is actually a Norman Cathedral City and just walking around the streets is like taking a trip through history. Impressive statues stand guard around the city centre, including a towering bronze figure of King Alfred the Great, and a medieval replica of the legendary King Arthur’s Round Table is hanging in the Great Hall of Winchester Castle at the top of the high street. There are plenty of family attractions in the area too, including the Winchester Science Centre & Planetarium and the 140 acre Marwell Zoo.

Andover was an important staging post in the 18th century and many of the beautiful buildings in the centre date from this time. Andover is particularly famous for being the home of the British Army and, unsurprisingly, the Ministry of Defence is the town’s largest employer. The local attractions include the Thruxton Motorsport Centre, where you can drive a supercar around the famous track and the Hawk Conservancy, which cares for more than 130 different birds of prey. For younger children Finkley Down Farm offers a great day out.

Basingstoke lies on what was the natural trading route between London and the south west, so it has been an economic hub since ancient times and many successful companies have sited their UK and even European headquarters here. The local attractions include the Milestones Living History Museum and The Vyne House & Gardens, which is run by the National Trust. And with direct trains to London Waterloo in less than an hour, living in Basingstoke makes it easy to explore everything our capital city has to offer, from Buckingham Palace and Madame Tussauds to the Tower of London and the London Eye.

Near the coast

The Hampshire coast covers a 230 mile stretch from around Highcliffe, on the edge of Dorset, all the way along to Chichester Harbour. If you like spending you free time on or by the sea, Hampshire is perfectly placed to access the beaches, sailing clubs, windsurfing centres, waterside pubs and seaside attractions along the south central coastline and those located further into Dorset and Sussex. Bournemouth is only 60 miles from Basingstoke (50 miles from Andover, 40 miles from Winchester) and has an incredible seven miles of award winning beaches. Heading back into Hampshire, Southampton has become the cruise capital of Europe in recent years, so from here you can set off for exotic locations...

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Our hospitals

Working for HHFT offers a rewarding career, nationally agreed terms and conditions and a range of additional benefits as part of our reward package.

A great place to live, work and play

As a county Hampshire is well equipped (with plenty of shopping facilities and a vibrant nightlife) and well connected, so no matter where you are in the county you can travel easily within its borders. The M3 extends the full length of Hampshire, from Southampton right up into Surrey. A network of A roads makes it easy to travel across the county by car and the local train services are generally good. So, whether you’re looking for some retail therapy or a night out on the town, Hampshire is your oyster!

Andover has a charming pedestrianised high street lined with shops and, at the top of the street, the Chantry Centre offers a further 60 shops conveniently located on one level. A regular street market is held on the high street every Thursday

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Go to Visit Hampshire website

West Quay Watermark in Southampton