The town of Newcastle-under-Lyme has a bit of a personality crisis, being often confused with Newcastle-upon-Tyne but having a population only a quarter of the size of the better-known Newcastle. Popularised by the silk and cotton industries, the town has slipped past its peak, and industry here is in decline. Local railways have been closed down and most of the canal filled in. The suburbs of Newcastle-Under-Lyme blend into those of neighbouring Stoke-on-Trent and it's hard to know where one ends and the other begins.
Despite this, recent emphasis on redevelopment has led to surges in business and shopping facilities, and the university has made the town a centre for nightlife. Chesterton is an area probably best avoided due to high crime rates and a lack of facilities. However newer developments in this area are beginning to improve things, and prices are currently pleasantly low, so it may make it a worthy prospect for people thinking about long-term investment.
Detached homes are surprisingly common, and the Westlands or Knutton areas are great places to start the search.