Moving to Cambridge
Cambridge is famous for its world-renowned university and high technology industries.
Moving to Cambridge from within Europe is usually by road and from further afield usually by sea, with more urgent items coming by air freight. Further details of the various shipping options can be viewed in our shipping guidance.
Cambridge is much older than its university. The Romans built the first town and the Anglo-Saxons had a settlement there. The first town charter was granted between 1120 and 1131, but it was the founding of the University in 1209 by some students escaping hostile townspeople in Oxford that was to shape its future.
Although Cambridge does not have a cathedral , traditionally a prerequisite for city status, it was granted its city charter in 1951 in recognition of its history and importance.
As well being home to one of the world’s leading universities, Cambridge is these days often known as Silicon Fen because of the many high-tech companies working in fields such as software and bioscience that have developed on the science parks around the city. Another major business is Marshall Aerospace, located on the eastern edge of the city. Over 40% of the Cambridge workforce has a higher education qualification, more than twice the national average, and around 25% of residents travel to work by bicycle each day.
The city of Cambridge is a major tourist attraction. The University is made up of different colleges, many of which have old and beautiful buildings. Popular sites for visitors include King’s College Chapel, the Bridge of Sighs and the Mathematical Bridge. Behind the main line of colleges, along the River Cam, are the backs of the colleges, which are best seen from a punt. Other attractions include the beautiful Cambridge University Botanic Garden, the Norman Round Church and the city’s many museums, such as the Fitzwilliam Museum which houses a collection of art of international importance, the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology and the Sedgewick Museum of Earth Sciences.
A little further afield is Newmarket, the birthplace and home of British racing, which has around 2,500 horses training in the town at any one time. Two of the five British Classic horseraces are run at Newmarket, and the town is also home to the National Stud and the National Horseracing Museum.
Nearby Ely’s magnificent medieval cathedral dominates the fen landscape, while Wicken Fen, owned by the National Trust, preserves the few remaining fragments of undrained fenland.
Amenities and Entertainment
Cambridge is flat, the city centre is compact, much of it is pedestrianised and getting around is easy. All the familiar high street shops are here as well as a market, while for people who like shopping malls there are two in the city centre – the Grand Arcade and Lion Yard – and one, the Grafton Centre, within walking distance. Booklovers will be spoiled for choice as there are many shops selling new and secondhand books. Heffers in Trinity Street opened in 1876 and is probably the biggest and the best-known.
When it comes to food Cambridge has something for everyone, from street food to fine-dining restaurants, Italian cuisine to the best of Chinese food. The week-long Cambridge Beer Festival started in 1974 and is Britain’s second largest beer festival outside London. Cambridge’s Midsummer Fair dates back to 1211 but is today primarily a funfair. The annual Cambridge Folk Festival is one of the largest in the UK. The main theatre is the Arts Theatre, a 666-seat venue in the city centre. Cambridge Corn Exchange hosts many functions each year including concerts.
The city is home to Cambridge United, who play in the English Football League. The Cambridge MCC University cricket team plays at Fenners, which has hosted first-class cricket since 1848.
Situated in the heart of East Anglia, Cambridge has excellent road, rail and air links.
- Cambridge railway station has direct links to two London terminals, King’s Cross and Liverpool Street. Journey time to King’s Cross non-stop is 45 minutes.
- London Stansted Airport is 30 miles away, easily reached by car via the M11, by bus or by direct trains from Cambridge station which stop at the airport terminal.
- The M11 motorway from east London terminates to the north-west of Cambridge where it joins the A14, which connects the port of Felixstowe on the east coast with the midlands.