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A snapshot into Portsmouth

  • October 03, 2022

Portsmouth is a dynamic and vibrant waterfront port city located on England’s South Coast, packed with great reasons to visit. There are lots of things to do in Portsmouth, with magnificent museums, live music venues, contemporary art galleries, two cathedrals, a diverse literary heritage, nightlife, festivals and countless events throughout the year.

Portsmouth and the NHS

Portsmouth Hospitals University NHS Trust serve a local population of about 675,000 residents across Portsmouth and south east Hampshire and care for many people beyond.

They offer a full range of hospital services from their main site at Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth. They also offer a range of outpatient and diagnostic facilities at community sites and local treatment centres across Portsmouth and South East Hampshire. These include:

  • St Mary’s Hospital – midwifery, dermatology and disablement services
  • Gosport War Memorial Hospital – a range of services including Blake Maternity Unit, Minor Injuries Unit and diagnostics
  • Petersfield Community Hospital – The Grange Maternity Unit

The Trust are well known for:

  • Being a regional cancer centre and provide some tertiary services to a catchment area of more than 2m people. This includes the Wessex Kidney Service.
  • There critical care facilities being rated “outstanding” by the Care Quality Commission
  • Their two purpose-built interventional radiology suites for image guided, minimally invasive surgery.

Facts About Portsmouth

  • Charles Dickens was born in Portsmouth and later included the city in his novel ‘Nicholas Nickleby’.
  • A variety of literary greats have also spent their time in Portsmouth including Rudyard Kipling and H. G. Wells. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of Sherlock Holmes, even practiced as a doctor in Southsea and wrote fiction while waiting for patients.
  • The city is home to some extremely famous ships, including HMS Warrior, the Tudor carrack Mary Rose and Horatio Nelson's flagship, HMS Victory (the world's oldest naval ship still in commission).
  • Despite being built with 11,000 cubic metres of concrete, the Spinnaker Tower was structurally designed to sway in the wind.  At 115 metres up and in high winds, the Tower can flex approximately 150mm.
  • Arnold Schwarzenegger once lived in Portsmouth and was a member of a Southsea gym in the 1960s
  • Portsmouth is home to the country’s biggest fruit handling port!
  • In 1917 Portsmouth was the first town in the country to open clinics for the free treatment of venereal disease.

Cost of Living in Portsmouth

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 Portsmouth to Cities in the UK


Time it Takes to Travel


1 Hours 37 Minutes


2 Hours 10 Minutes


2 Hours 41 Minutes


4 Hours 20 Minutes


5 Hours 52 Minutes


3 Hours 37 Minutes


4 Hours 32 Minutes


6 Hours 58 Minutes

Education in Portsmouth

According to Portsmouth City Councils website, there are 49 Primary Schools and 10 Secondary Schools located within the Portsmouth catchment area. The majority of schools in Portsmouth are rated ‘Good’ by Ofsted, whilst a handful are rated ‘Outstanding’.

Portsmouth is also home to an award-winning University, with a Gold rating in the Government-backed Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) – which means our teaching, learning and student outcomes are outstanding and among the highest quality in the UK. The University also has a huge variety of societies and clubs, as well as excellent sports facilities.

Things to do in Portsmouth

Historic Dockyards and HMS Victory

Whether you’re an amateur naval historian or a looking for a hands-on experience for your kids, the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard gives you full-day access to three ships, three submarines, and as many museums as you like. A personal guide offers informative commentary while accompanying you on Royal Navy warships including the HMS ‘Victory’ and HMS ‘Warrior.’ Step foot aboard the ‘Mary Rose’ and see exhibits at the National Museum of the Royal Navy Portsmouth, then take a boat tour of the harbor.

The Beachfront and Southsea Commons

The seafront is one of the most popular areas of Portsmouth, enjoyed by visitors and residents alike. The beach stretches along the whole southern end of Portsea Island from Old Portsmouth to the conservation area of Eastney. There are many places to visit along Southsea seafront including Southsea Castle - one of the historic fortifications built during Henry VIII's reign and the D-Day Story. Just behind the seafront, you will find the communal SouthSea Common, a large open green space, a fantastic place to bring the kids or family over the Summer for picnics, BBQ and more. Facilities also include a children's play area, beach volleyball courts, tennis, pitch and putt and a skate park.

Victorius Festival

Victorious Festival is a three-day music festival held in Portsmouth, founded in 2011. The festival is for everyone, with music ranging from rock, indie and alternative to electronic, pop, world, acoustic and folk. The event takes place in August and tickets range from £25-121.

Gunwharf Quays

Gunwharf Quays is the South’s leading designer outlet, boasting over 90 stores and over 30 restaurants, bars and coffee shops. The center is located on the beautiful waterfront and is the ideal place to explore, shop, dine and take in the exciting sites of this historic coastal city.

Royal Navy Submarine Museum

Just across the water from Portsmouth in Gosport is the Royal Navy Submarine Museum. Highlights include Britain's first submarine, Holland I, launched in 1901, along with HMS Alliance, launched just after the close of WWII. There are a variety of fascinating interactive exhibits dealing with life underwater and life in a submarine.

Places to worship

Portsmouth Central Masjid

300 Somers Rd N, Portsmouth PO1 1PL

Portsmouth Jami Mosque and Islamic Centre

111 Victoria Rd N, Southsea, Portsmouth, Southsea PO5 1PS

Harbour Church Portsmouth

All Saints Church, 334 Commercial Rd, Portsmouth PO1 4BT

St Mary's Church

Fratton Rd, Fratton, Portsmouth PO1 5PA

Southampton Buddhist Centre

73 St Mary St, Southampton SO14 1NW

Guru Nanak Sar Gurdwara – Portsmouth

5 Margate Rd, Southsea, Portsmouth, Southsea PO5 1EY

Places to eat

Chumma Kitchen

59 Union St, Ryde PO33 2LG

Kadir's Indian Street Kitchen | Indian Restaurant and Takeaway Southsea

217 Albert Rd, Southsea, Portsmouth, Southsea PO4 0JP

HALDI – Bangladeshi Restaurant

93 Albert Rd, Southsea, Portsmouth, Southsea PO5 2SG

Restaurant 27

27a S Parade, Southsea, Portsmouth, Southsea PO5 2JF

Bodrum Restaurant

165-167 Albert Rd, Southsea, Portsmouth, Southsea PO4 0JW

Relocation to Portsmouth

If you’re an international doctor looking to relocate to Portsmouth, 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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