Merseyside town that inspired Napoleon’s design of Paris named as UK coastal hotspot

The historic seaside town of Southport has been ranked sixth in the top ten most desirable coastal areas to live in the UK.

People walk with a dog along the beach at sunset, near Southport Pier. Image: PAUL ELLIS/AFP via Getty Images

A Merseyside town is one of the most in-demand coastal hotspots this year, according to one of the UK’s largest online property websites.

Southport, which has a long and rich history, has been ranked sixth in the top ten coastal areas with the highest number of enquiries to Rightmove.

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The website maintains that even as winter draws in, the demand for seaside homes remains strong.

Homes in Southport have an average asking price of £215,838.

Rightmove suggests buyers can pick up a roomy, four-bedroom period house for around £300,000 to £400,000, a semi for less than £200,000, or a starter flat for circa £75,000.

Here are a few examples of Southport properties currently on the market.

Liverpool Road, Ainsdale, Southport

£485,000

Extended four bedroom semi-detached family home, positioned within a well-established and generous plot along Liverpool Road in Ainsdale.

4-bed house for £485,000 Liverpool Road, Southport. Image: Arnold&Phillips/Rightmove

4-bed house for £485,000 Liverpool Road, Southport. Image: Arnold&Phillips/Rightmove

Marine Gate Mansions, Southport

£400,000

Situated in a Grade II listed building which was once a Victorian hospital, this ground floor apartment is the only property within this famous development to feature two privately owned gardens.

2-bed luxury flat for £400,000 on the Promenade, Southport. Image: Northwood/Rightmove

2-bed luxury flat for £400,000 on the Promenade, Southport. Image: Northwood/Rightmove

Norwood Crescent, Southport

£280,000

Four bedroom semi-detached family home, located in a popular residential location a short drive from Southport.

4-bed semi-detached house for £280,000 in Southport. Image: Ball&Percival/Rightmove

4-bed semi-detached house for £280,000 in Southport. Image: Ball&Percival/Rightmove

Five facts about Southport

  •  In the mid-1800s, Prince Louis-Napoleon Bonaparte, the future Napoleon III, is rumoured to have lived for a brief period in accommodation just off Lord Street. It is claimed Southport is the inspiration behind the tree-lined boulevards of the Champs-Élysées in Paris.
Christmas shoppers in Lord Street, Southport circa 1931. Image: Photo by Topical Press Agency/Getty Images
  • Southport has been awarded £37.5 million from the government’s Towns Fund, with £30 million of the total grant earmarked for a new Marine Lakes Events Centre. The new events complex would replace the existing Southport Theatre and Convention Centre. The planned centre, together with a sound and light show pier attraction leading into the adjacent lake, is at the heart of Sefton Council’s plans for Southport’s regeneration.
Artist impression of the Marine Lake Events Centre. Image: Sefton Council
  • Housed in a beautiful 19th century building on Southport’s Lord Street, The Atkinson is home to music, theatre, art, literature and history. Its impressive collection has over 3,500 artworks and 25,000 pieces of social history, which are displayed on rotation across its museum and galleries.
  • With an Art Deco clubhouse, the Royal Birkdale Golf Club claims to have held more championship and international events since World War II than any other course in the world and has been voted the number one golf club in England.
  • The British Lawnmower Museum in Southport includes ‘Lawnmowers of the Rich and Famous’ and equipment owned by Prince Charles and Princess Diana, Queen guitar player Brian May, comedian Eric Morcambe, Coronation Street actress Jean Alexander and gardener and presenter Alan Titchmarsh.

The 10 most sought-after coastal towns in the UK

1. Bournemouth, Dorset

Average asking price: £317,449 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 4%

2. Southampton, Hampshire

Average asking price: £249,053 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 4%

3. Brighton, East Sussex

Average asking price: £461,796 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 5%

4. Blackpool, Lancashire

Average asking price: £137,301 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 8%

5. Poole, Dorset

Average asking price: £406,566 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 5%

6. Southport, Merseyside

Average asking price: £215,838 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 5%

7. Eastbourne, East Sussex

Average asking price: £306,546 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 6%

8. Worthing, West Sussex

Average asking price: £354,361 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 6%

9. Hastings, East Sussex

Average asking price: £295,096 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 10%

10. Weston-Super-Mare, Somerset

Average asking price: £252,339 Average asking price increase (2021 vs 2020): 5%

Source: Rightmove