Reigate - Surrey Life Towns & Villages 2013
PUBLISHED: 14:36 16 October 2013 | UPDATED: 15:22 16 October 2013
A very Surrey market town, Reigate is well supplied with boutiques, delis, coffee shops and restaurants and pubs
Reigate Heath is the site of a number of Bronze Age burial mounds (3,000 to 5,000 years old) which have been designated Scheduled Ancient Monuments. In the Bronze Age, a cemetery was established here and the burial mounds (known as tumuli) are still visible today. The Heath is also the site for an unusual windmill. Built in 1765, the post mill has a chapel inside it, installed in 1880 as an extension of St Mary’s Church in the town.
The Tunnel Road caves beneath the Castle Grounds have been home to the local gun club but also open to the public along with their more historic neighbour the Barons’ Cave several times a year. At various points in their history, they have been used as sand mines, explosive stores and air raid shelters. The Barons’ Cave is one of the oldest show caves in Britain.
The Cranston Library, founded in 1701, is situated above the vestry in St Mary’s Church. It was the first public lending library in England.
Make sure to visit Reigate Hill, Gatton Park and Reigate Fort, the latter of which was built as part of a 72 mile defence line to protect London during the Victorian Era. There are also walks that can be accessed along the North Downs Way from here, as well as a little café.
The Dining Room (01737 226650) in the High Street is owned by celebrity chef Tony Tobin and has been a stalwart of the Surrey dining scene for many years.
The Venture Inn (01737 271576), which offers a wide range of real ale, Thai food and a dose of sport.
The four-star Nutfield Priory (0845 072 7485) is a short drive away.
Just off junction 8 of the M25. The train station is a few minutes walk out of the town.