In the past Northampton did very well from its shoe making industry, now its economy is far more diverse. With considerable investment in this large town on-going, Northampton is on the up. The complimentary mixture of rural and urban life works well here, advantages being the retention of a large market square and a more relaxed tempo in everyday life. If relaxing is not your thing then Birmingham and London are both an hour away, in opposite directions. Sporting options are also good here, from Northampton rugby to athletics and even white water rafting, you will be spoilt for choice.