Blogs > A snapshot of UK Cities

A Snapshot into.. Reading

  • September 12, 2022

Reading is a large town located in Berkshire in the South East of England. The town sits on the Thames river, and is well known for Reading Festival, a music festival that takes place on the August bank holiday weekend every year. With a population of 230,046, Reading is a popular location to relocate to, whilst also being close enough to London to allow you to commute.

Reading and the NHS

Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust is made up of:

  • Prospect Park Hospital
  • Erlegh House University of Reading
  • 25 Erleigh Road

The Trust are proud to be rated as 'Outstanding' by the Care Quality Commission (CQC).

Facts About Reading

  • Despite its spelling, Reading is actually pronounced ‘Redding’ rather than ‘Reading’.
  • Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading was built due to the number of serious injuries caused by the construction of the Great Western Railway.
  • Royal Berkshire’s first patient was a fifteen-year-old railway worker called George Earley. He had a compound fracture of the upper right arm, and as a result, his arm was amputated at the shoulder.
  • Reading is the largest town in the UK without city status.
  • Huntley & Palmers, a famous Reading based biscuit company, provided specially made emergency biscuits to a British Antarctic Expedition to the South Pole that took place in 1911.
  • Reading successfully managed to prevent the spread of the plague that broke out in London in 1665 by appointing wardens to search people and goods coming into the town.
  • In World War II, many London children were evacuated to Reading as it was considered to be a less dangerous location than London.
  • The UK’s first female university professor was appointed at the University of Reading in 1908, her name was Edith Morley, and she was a Professor of English Language.
  • A number of UK celebrities were born in Royal Berkshire Hospital, including Kate Winslett, Ricky Gervais and the Duchess of Cambridge, Kate Middleton.

Cost of Living in Reading

Cost of Renting Accommodation per month

One-Bedroom Apartment in the City Centre


One-Bedroom Apartment outside of the City Centre


Three-Bedroom Apartment in the City Centre


Three-Bedroom Apartment outside of the City Centre



1ltr Petrol


One-Way Public Transport Ticket


Monthly Public Transport Ticket


1km Taxi Journey



Meal out for two in a local pub


Meal out for two in a mid-range restaurant, 3 courses


Cinema tickets for two people


One-month gym membership


Tennis court rental for 1 hour on the weekend


Beer 0.5ltr bottle


Coke/Pepsi 0.33ltr bottle




Time it Takes to Travel by Train from Reading to Cities in the UK


Time it Takes to Travel


25 Minutes


1 Hour 15 Minutes


1 Hour 27 Minutes


3 Hours 9 Minutes


4 Hours 6 Minutes


1 Hour 33 Minutes


3 Hours 27 Minutes


5 Hours 40 Minutes

Education in Reading

Reading currently has 50 primary schools, 19 secondary schools and 15 sixth forms and colleges. Overall, most of the schools and colleges in Reading have an Ofsted rating of ‘Good’ with some also having ‘Outstanding’ ratings. If you would like to have a look at the Ofsted rating for an individual school, you can find it on the Gov.UK website here.

Reading also has a university, the University of Reading. It was founded as an extension to the University of Oxford in the 19th century and is ranked as one of the top 200 universities in the world.

Things to do in Reading

Reading Museum

If you’re looking for a bit of culture and history, then you can venture over to Reading Museum. Based in the Victorian Town Hall at the heart of the town, you can explore the artefacts of Reading’s past, from Victorian tapestries and Roman archeology to natural history, the museum even boasts a fantastic collection of historical biscuit tins from Huntley & Palmer’s, the famous Reading based biscuit company. If your thirst for history isn’t quenched by the museum, a Riverside Museum is only a short distance away at Blake’s Lock! If you’d like to buy a small memento of your day, there is an onsite gift shop, and if you’re in the mood for a snack, you can visit the museum’s café for a drink and a slice of cake. The museum is open Tuesday to Saturday, between 10am – 4pm on Tuesdays to Fridays and 10am to 5pm on Saturdays. Entry to the museum is free, but there is a suggested donation of £5. You can learn more about Reading Museum here.

Reading Festival

This famous annual music festival has been running since 1989, and takes place on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday of the August bank holiday weekend. The lineup for the festival changes each year, and there are a number of camping facilities are available to allow you to stay for the duration of the festival. Tickets go on sale in advance, so if this is an event you are interested in attending, it’s best to book well in advance. Given the nature of the festival, it is advised that you do not take young children, and children under 15 years of age must be accompanied by an adult aged 18 or over. If you’d like to find out how to book tickets for Reading Festival, you can visit their website.

The Hexagon

Built in 1977, the Hexagon is an arts venue that hosts a plethora of events and performances throughout the year. A fantastic place to spend an afternoon or an evening, particularly if you’re an arts fan, there are comedy shows, musicals, concerts, pantomimes, dances, children’s shows and more, so you’re sure to find something you’ll enjoy. The venue has a number of cafes and bars where you may enjoy a drink or a meal before your show. If you’d like to see what’s on at The Hexagon, you can find out here.

RedKangaroo Trampoline Parks – Reading

 RedKangaroo is an indoor trampoline park for family members of all ages. With sessions for children aged 1 and over, you can explore the selection of courses they have on offer, from children and family sessions to sessions for adults, you can traverse the gladiator beams, attempt the warrior courses and take on the tumble tracks. They even have ‘Kanga Calm’ sessions where they reduce the number of people allowed into the park and turn off the bright lights and music so that family members with anxiety, autism or any other requirements can enjoy a more relaxed session. If you’re feeling peckish after all of that bouncing, there are mezzanine seating areas and a café where you can grab a bite to eat and catch your breath! Read more about what RedKangaroo has to offer here.

Unique Outdoors

If you’re feeling adventurous, Unique Outdoors offers a number of outdoor pursuits to take anyone’s fancy! With laser combat, archery, climbing, zorbing and high ropes available, you can spend the day with your family taking on one of these adventures, or several of them with their package deals. Prices vary depending on how many activities you wish to do and which activities you choose. Have a look at the activities on offer at Unique Outdoors on their website.

Beale Park

If you’re looking for a family day out, Beale Wildlife Park & Gardens is the perfect location. The park is dedicated to the care and conservation of rare and endangered animals. Not only can you witness first-hand the park’s array of endangered animals, but there are a number of activities for children including numerous indoor and outdoor play areas and a miniature train. For adults, there are several beautiful gardens where you can enjoy a leisurely stroll, try your hand at fishing and even take a river cruise during the summer. On a warm day, you could take a picnic with you to enjoy with the family, though there is a restaurant onsite that serves meals and afternoon tea. Entry to the park costs £12 for adults aged 16 and over, £10.50 for seniors and students, £10 for children aged between 2-15 and entry is free for children under two and carers of disabled visitors. They also offer family deals £36 for two adults and two children and £34 for one adult and three children. Find out more about Beale Park on their website.

Religion and Places of worship in Reading

Karma Kagyu Tibetan Buddhism

16 Reading Diamond Way Buddhist Group, 32 Oaklands, Bulmershe Road, RG1 5RW

Jewish Community of Berkshire (Orthodox)

63 Tilehurst Rd, Reading RG30 2JL

Kingdom Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses

75 Water Rd, Reading RG30 2NP

Maidenhead Synagogue (Reform)

Grenfell Lodge, Ray Park Road, Maidenhead, SL6 8QX

Amity Road Mosque (Anjuman Mihibban-e-Rasool)

14 1/3 Amity Road, RG1 3LN

Jamme Mosque

17 46 Alexandra Road, RG1 5PF

Sri Guru Singh Sabha

13 Gurdwara 30a Cumberland Road, RG1 3LB

Wycliffe Baptist Church

233 King's Rd, Reading RG1 4LS

All things food in Reading

The Coconut Tree – Sri Lankan style street food

64 King's Rd, Reading RG1 3BJ

Royal Tandoori

4-8 Duke St, Reading RG1 4RY

Buenasado Steakhouse – Argentinian

Unit 28 Lower Mall The Oracle Bridge Street Shopping Centre, Reading RG1 2AQ

Coconut Bar & Kitchen

62 St Mary's Butts, Reading RG1 2LG

Relocation to Reading

If you’re an international doctor looking to relocate to Reading, or another location in the UK, please email your CV to [email protected] and we can support you in securing an NHS post and on your journey to relocate to the UK.

Are you a member of our Facebook group? When you join IMG Advisor, you join a community of doctors all looking to relocate to the UK and join the NHS. We post a series of vlogs and blogs to the group every day. We will also be on hand to answer all of your relocation queries.

Subscribe to our YouTube channel! We have over 100 videos on everything you need to know about relocating to the UK and joining the NHS!

Listen to BDI Resourcing on the go to IMG Advisor the Podcast. You can find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher and Buzzsprout. We have a number of episodes with tips and advice on relocating to the UK and the routes you can take to achieve this.


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