It's incredible to believe it, but soon, displaced people in London will be able to travel home to Corby, in Northamptonshire, approximately at the same time as it would take to reach somewhere like Wandsworth in the city. This is due to the opening of a new train station and the so-called Corby Extension. Corby's online direct travel time in London is expected to be in the 70 minute region. This is good news for a city that seems to be in constant depression since the days of Margaret Thatcher. As a retreat in the 1970s, the City Center would not seem out of place in an episode of Sweeney.
However, I have always found that Corby's reputation as a "tough" city precedes it. Actually, outside of a couple of properties (which, due to the planning ideals of the 60s, have surrounding roads and can be easily avoided), Corby is no different from any other important Midlands city. Its near neighbors are Kettering, Wellingborough, Rushden and Market Harborough, but it is a place to live. The arrival of the rail reinforces this point.
As a potential resident, look at the properties listings online. At the moment, £ 160,000 would get a study at Wandsworth, the cheapest market. However, £ 160,000 to Corby would get 4 separate beds, with double garage in a village location, independent dining room and laundry room as well. There is no comparison. In these telecommuting days, living in a city like Corby could mean a huge improvement in quality of life. Even if you were to travel to the city, you will not take much longer than the equivalent trip from somewhere like Tooting or Croydon.
If you consider leaving the smoke, make Corby your first consideration.