Brockham: Surrey village life
PUBLISHED: 12:20 31 January 2012 | UPDATED: 20:58 20 February 2013
Recently named Surrey's Village of the Year, Brockham is nothing if not picturesque. Most famous for its huge annual bonfire, which attracts thousands of visitors, the village usually enjoys a rather more relaxed pace of life
Originally published in Surrey Life magazine January 2012
Recently named Surreys Village of the Year, Brockham is nothing if not picturesque. Most famous for its huge annual bonfire, which attracts thousands of visitors, the village usually enjoys a rather more relaxed pace of life
Just off the A25 near Dorking, the nearest main train station is the one in the market town. Brockham is also served by the Arriva 21/22/32 bus service, which runs between Guildford and Redhill.
In the spotlight
Brockham has featured in several adverts including a Jamie Oliver one for Sainsburys and another for kitchen towels that used the local cricket team as extras. It also appears in many calendars, the picturesque village green featuring as the archetypal Surrey village. But as for celebrities, the area is remarkably free of them.
I have lived in Brockham for 20 years and the main thing that makes the village tick is the sense of community, says Jane Holmes, shop manager at the award-winning Shop at Strood Green. Everyone young, old and in-between has a sense of belonging and looking after the village. There are so many ways people can get involved in village life from the horticulture and the culture clubs etc to the church, the school and the pubs to the bonfire, the village weekend, the youth caf, the shop, the doctors surgery... the list goes on!
Did you know?
Brockham Limeworks remains on English Heritages Heritage at Risk register. The study says: The limeworks of Brockham Brick Company house unique survivors from a period when England led the world in industry. The 19th century flare kiln and Brockham patent kiln are among the most important industrial structures in Britain, yet quickly fell into disrepair when operations on the site ceased in 1936.
At the village hall
The Village Hall club is somewhere to relax in the evening, with a bar, pool and snooker tables, jukebox and dartboard. There is a large function room at the back that regularly holds dance and exercise classes, baby and toddler groups, as well as band nights and private parties.
Making the headlines
Brockham was recently named Surrey Village of the Year 2011 at an awards ceremony held in the village hall of last years winner, Tatsfield. The annual competition, which is hosted by Surrey Community Action, is open to all Surrey villages with a population of up to 5,000.
Did you know 2?
For a titbit of information, the land for Christ Church, consecrated in 1847, was donated by Sir Henry Thomas Hope, of the Hope Diamond fame, who had bought the manor of Brockham in 1838. It was built so that the workers in Brockham didnt have to trek through the fields to Betchworth to worship.
Grab a bite
Originally a watering hole for travellers between Dorking and Reigate, the population of Brockham first grew with the expansion of the local limeworks and then again in the 1920s when the A24 and A25 around Dorking were extensively improved. Carrying on its thirst quenching tradition, the recent addition of the Grumpy Mole restaurant at the Inn on the Green (formerly The Dukes Head) has only added to the villages appeal.