Is Cessnock a good place to live?

Family of 5, 2 in high school, 1 in primary year 3, 7 and 9. Would we fit in well and make lots of new friends or are the people unfriendly. Also, it the place safe, clean, green, and is the cost of living bad?
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DjD 2yrs+
Cessnock is actually a pretty decent place to live despite what some people may tell you. I am not originally from the area but have lived here for the last 5 years and don't have anything negative to say about it. The price of homes here is good in fact a 3-4 bedroom federation style home can be had for under $300,000.

The main street is quite nice and is usually pretty clean. There are plenty of shops including Big W, Target, Aldi, a brand new Bunnings, Coles, Woolworths, Best and Less, Lowes, GB games, health food stores, bakeries, Reject shop, auto accessory stores, sporting stores, McDonalds, Oporto's, KFC, Subway, Pizza hut, Domino's, Thai food, Indian food, pub food. Its also about 5 minutes away from the wineries, Harrigans Irish Pub, Hunter Valley Gardens. There is a hospital, medical centre + a couple of small doctor surgeries, mechanics, woolies and coles petrol stations, police boys club, library, golfing clubs....all the usual stuff. Lost of concerts are held in the gardens of the wineries too! Events in the region include 'CMC rocks the hunter', 'The lovedale long lunch', 'Snow time in the Gardens', 'Jazz in the vines', 'Hunter Valley Christmas Spectacular', 'A day on the Green' and 'The Gum Ball'. Google any of these for more info!

There are a few school school options including 2 state high schools ( I hear mt view is a better high school), a handful of state primary schools, a catholic primary school, a private christian k-12 school, childcare centres and a TAFE college. Kids in the catholic system generally go to Maitland for secondary school (buses available). It takes around 30 minutes to get to Maitland/Rutherford where there are stores like The Good Guys, Harvey Norman, Organic Feast (a big organic grocery store) etc and 45 or so to get to Newcastle.

There seems to be a stigma attached to Cessnock but in all honesty, as a person who has lived and traveled in many different places around the country/world, I have seen way worse (especially in Newcastle).
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Bryce Gibson 2yrs+
DjD well balanced report on Cessnock well done! Thank you
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