Londoners fed up with high property prices in the country’s capital are flocking to Swindon to find their new homes.

Estate agents have seen more people from out of town settling into flats and houses around the borough which would be too expensive elsewhere.

New figures from the estate agency Hamptons, collected for Bricks & Mortar shows that nearly half of new renters in some areas came from London, fleeing from skyrocketing rents that have increased by more than 10 per cent in the past 12 months.

Swindon is one of three Wiltshire areas – along with Trowbridge and Chippenham – included in the top 10 postcodes affected by the influx of Londoners, while Marlborough is 12th.

Rafael Rocha, the senior valuer and negotiator at Charles Harding Estate Agents’ Old Town office, explained that this trend started post-lockdown and continues to this day.

He said: “Buyers have more purchasing power in Swindon, it’s like a newfound gem for people who want more space for the budget they have.

“The average UK house price is £270,000 – that gets you a three-bed home here but you’d be lucky to get a one-bed flat for that in Newbury, Reading, or London.

“People from east of the M4 corridor started moving to Swindon more often since lockdown ended.

“They don’t have a particular preference to an area as there’s no familiarity with the town, so they just have to view the property and see if they like the neighbourhood.

“Old Town, Lawns, and Lakeside are traditionally more desirable parts of town, in general.”

This trend has given the property sector a shot in the arm but has had ripple effects on the town’s housing market.

Rafael added: “It does make it a bit more difficult for local people to move into the housing market because this activity bumps the house prices up a little.

“First-time buyers are more interested in newer builds while Londoners tend to go for Victorian houses.

“However, the numbers of buyers from out of town has dwindled recently. There has been a slight slowdown over the last few months due to rising interest rates.

“Buyers are more cautious and are now far less likely to offer above the asking price, it’s more like it was pre-Covid, more of a buyers’ market.

“We still get lots of interest from investors looking for rental properties and HMOs in Swindon.”