A small village, with its origins at the northern edge of St. Leonards Forest, it has no shops or retail facilities. There is a pub "The Dragon", and a church and a small primary school. There is a range of architectural styles in the village, with houses present from several different design eras. In the late twentieth century there have been some small developments of new houses in the centre of the village.
Nearby settlements include the similar[how?] villages of Faygate and Pease Pottage, and the village is located close to the towns of both Horsham and Crawley.
The area is associated with the Wealden iron industry, Col possibly referring to charcoal burners. Many hammer ponds are still visible within the parish. Gate is thought[by whom?] to refer to an entrance to the historically much larger St. Leonards Forest.