″It was an amazing day. To see six houses that were off-market and to be the first into five of those was a real achievement … thank you.″
This south-eastern county with a population of approximately 1,067,000 borders Berkshire, Greater London, Hampshire, Kent, East Sussex and West Sussex. Its county town in Guildford which, despite having a University, Castle and Cathedral, does not actually have City status. Due to its proximity to London, Surrey contains many ‘commuter’ towns and villages. The population density is higher and the area more affluent, on average, than the majority of the United Kingdom.
Surrey contains a good deal of mature woodland - and is, in fact, the most wooded county in Great Britain with 22.4% coverage compared to a national average of 11.8%. Box Hill has the oldest untouched area of natural woodland in the UK and one of the oldest in Europe.
The geology of Surrey is dominated by the chalk hills of the North Downs, much of which is accessible for walkers and riders. Surrey does, therefore, have a very large horse population.
Interesting Facts & Figures
- The traditional nickname for people from Surrey is ‘Surrey Capon’, resulting from the fact that in the later Middle Ages, chickens were fattened up in Surrey ready for the London meat markets.
- The highest point in Surrey is Leith Hill, near Dorking which is 968 ft above sea level.
- In Roman times the territory of Surrey was traversed by Stane Street, a well-known Roman road stretching from Chichester to London.
- Alfred the Great’s son, King Eadweard I was the first king to be crowned on the King’s Stone at Kingston upon Thames in 902. After him, another six kings of England were crowned here.
- The autistic savant James Henry Pullen was housed in the Royal Earlswood Hospital, an early psychiatric hospital.
- The Surrey village of Ockley, between Horsham and Dorking, has the largest village green in England.
- Wotton House in Surrey was the family seat of John Evelyn, the 17th century diarist and horticulturist.
- The Magna Carta was signed at Runnymede in Egham in 1215.
Surrey’s key road and rail transit routes
There are excellent road and rail connections throughout the county.
Travelling by car from Guildford to the centre of London takes approximately 1 hour; and to Birmingham, 2 hours 15 minutes. Further approximate car journey times are as follows:
|Reigate||1 hr 5 mins||2 hrs 20 mins|
|Runnymede||50 mins||2 hrs|
|Waverley Abbey||1 hr 20 mins||2 hrs 30 mins|
Airport locations and routes
The international airport at Gatwick is in Surrey’s neighbouring county of Sussex. Heathrow is also within easy access via the M25.
Surrey has many excellent Independent and State Schools within its boundaries – in fact ISCis (Independent Schools and Colleges Information Service) lists over 80! Equerry has contacts with many of these schools – and can, unofficially, help you with the kind of ‘local view’ that is not always portrayed in a prospectus!
Examples of some excellent independent Surrey schools follow:
- Belmont School, Feldermore, Holmbury St Mary, Dorking, Surrey RH5 6LQ
- Charterhouse, Godalming, Surrey GU7 2DJ
- Cranleigh School, Cranleigh, Surrey GU6 8QQ
- City of London Freemen’s School, Ashtead Park, Ashtead, Surrey KT21 1ET
- Epsom College, Epsom, Surrey KT17 4JQ
- Guildford High School for Girls, Guildford, Surrey GU1 1SJ
- King Edward’s School, Witley, Godalming, Surrey GU8 5SG
- Lyndhurst School, 36 The Avenue, Camberley, Surrey GU15 3NE
- Manor House School, Manor House Lane, Little Bookham, Surrey KT23 4EN
- Notre Dame Senior School, Burwood House, Cobham, Surrey KT11 1HA
- Woodcote House School, Windlesham, Surrey GU20 6PF
- Yehudi Menuhin School, Stoke d’Abernon, Cobham, Surrey KT11 3QQ
Where to stay and what to do in Surrey
By way of entertainment, Surrey has plenty of variety to choose from – and more than sufficient for those hoping to send weekend visitors off for the day! The Derby is held each year in June. The Royal Horticultural Society Garden is at Wisley. There are many National Trust properties in Surrey, including the 18th century Palladian mansion Clandon Park, Hatchlands Park in East Clandon and Oakhurst Cottage in Hambledon, a restored 16th century worker’s home. From Hampton Court Palace to Kew Gardens, there is indeed something for everybody.
Surrey has a wealth of excellent hotels and pubs within its borders. Or, at the other end of the spectrum, there is a Youth Hostel at Hindhead, Devil’s Punch Bowl, Thursley which is a totally secluded cottage in a rural beauty spot that has no car access.
- Great Fosters, Stroude Road, Egham, Surrey. 01784 433822
- Langshott Manor, Langshott, Nr Gatwick, Surrey 01293 786680
- The Angel Posting House & Livery, 91 The High Street, Guildford, Surrey. 01483 564555
- The Hare & Hounds, Lingfield, Surrey RH7 6BZ. 01342 832351
- King William IV, Mickleham, Surrey RH5 6EL. 01372 372590
- Inn at West End, West End, Surrey GU24 9PW. 01276 858652
- The Running Horses, Mickleham, Surrey RH5 6DU. 01372 372279