Kings Hill shown within Kent
|Population||7,770 (2011 census)|
|OS grid reference|
|District||Tonbridge and Malling|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Post town||West Malling|
|Ambulance||South East Coast|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
|UK Parliament||Tonbridge and Malling|
Kings Hill is a civil parish in the Borough of Tonbridge and Malling in Kent, England. It is one of several new villages built in Kent since the 1950s (other examples including Vigo and New Ash Green). Development started in 1989 near West Malling, on land previously occupied by RAF West Malling. The plan was for a multi-purpose site of both residential and office/business space. The ultimate aim is to have some 2750 homes and 2 million square feet (186,000 m²) of commercial properties. Kings Hill currently lacks a dedicated church and does not constitute an ecclesiastical parish, instead falling predominantly within the parishes of neighbouring Mereworth and West Malling.
The principle development of the site was done by Rouse Kent, commencing on the old West Malling airfield site in 1989. The ultimate aim is to have some 2,750 homes and 2 million square feet (186,000 m²) of commercial properties. As of 2010, 2000 homes have been built along with 800,000 square feet (74,000 m2) of business space. The development precipitated a major expansion of the A228 which passes the village. In common with many newer villages and developments, Kings Hill currently lacks a dedicated church and does not constitute an ecclesiastical parish, instead falling predominantly within the parishes of neighbouring Mereworth and West Malling. In 2003 the Diocese of Rochester of the Church of England appointed the first full-time resident minister to meet the pastoral needs of the growing business and residential community. Construction of houses and other buildings is set to continue in Kings Hill as Kent County Council have purchased new land for building. There is talk of another primary school and possibly a secondary school. Another access road may also be needed if the current rate of expansion continues. In May 2010 plans were unveiled for the re-development of the old airfield's derelict control tower (now a listed building) and the surrounding area.
Many of the roads in Kings Hill are named after varieties of apple, a fruit which has been grown in Kent for centuries, including Bovarde Avenue, Braeburn Way, Discovery Drive, Melrose Avenue, Pippin Way, Winston Avenue and Worcester Avenue.
Kings Hill has various facilities including Asda and Waitrose supermarkets, a Shepherd Neame public house named "The Spitfire", two primary schools, a doctor's surgery, a veterinary surgery, opticians, pharmacist, restaurants, cafés, and a David Lloyd Leisure health club.
The development features a number of major sculptures commissioned by the developers. On the roundabout between the business park and the residential area is A different ball game by Kevin Atherton which consists of a 10 ft (3.0 m) diameter reflective ball being pushed in different directions by three life-size bronze figures which were cast from local people. On the A228 roundabout to the north of the business park is a 45 ft (14 m) tall obelisk style sculpture called L'Ambiente created by Enzo Torcoletti. Smaller sculptures on the site include memorials to Group Captain Peter Townsend and Bill Rouse, late chairman of the site's developers.
Kings Hill is served by the following bus routes:
- 72: Kings Hill - West Malling - Maidstone
- 77: Kings Hill - Hadlow - Tonbridge - Tunbridge Wells
- 123: Kings Hill - West Malling railway station shuttle bus
- 151: Kings Hill - West Malling - Chatham
The nearest railway station is West Malling, with a regular shuttle bus service (Nu-Venture 123) operating between Kings Hill and the station on Mondays to Fridays. The station links the area to London, Maidstone and Ashford.
A number of major organisations have offices in Kings Hill's business park including:
- Balfour Beatty
- Capita IT Services
- Charities Aid Foundation
- FLIR Systems
- Jupiter Fund Management
- Kent County Council
- Kimberly-Clark (UK headquarters)
- Tonbridge and Malling Borough Council
- Yell Group
|Kings Hill compared|
|2011 UK Census||Kings Hill||Tonbridge and Malling borough||England|
The 2004 Wealth of the Nation report listed the Kings Hill postcode sector (ME19 4), as having the highest average income and the highest proportion of households earning greater than £100,000 per annum in Great Britain. Although Kings Hill remains conspicuously wealthy it did not appear in the 2006 report.
As of the 2011 UK census the Kings Hill electoral ward had a population of 7,770, an increase of 157% from its 2001 level. The ethnicity was 93.4% white, 2.1% mixed race, 3.3% Asian, 0.6% black and 0.6% other. The place of birth of residents was 90.8% United Kingdom, 0.5% Republic of Ireland, 1.5% other Western European countries, and 7.2% elsewhere. Religion was recorded as 62.7% Christian, 0.9% Muslim, 0.4% Buddhist, 0.7% Hindu, 0.2% Sikh and 0.1% Jewish. 28.7% were recorded as having no religion while 6.0% did not state their religion.
The economic activity of residents aged 16–74 was 47.6% in full-time employment, 14.6% in part-time employment, 11.9% self-employed, 2.5% unemployed, 2.6% students with jobs, 3.4% students without jobs, 8.7% retired, 6.5% looking after home or family, 1.3% permanently sick or disabled and 0.9% economically inactive for other reasons. Primary industries of employment of residents were retail and motor trade 14.7%, finance and insurance 14.7% construction 11.7%, scientific and technical 9.5% and manufacturing 8.7%. Compared with national figures, the ward had a relatively high proportion of workers in finance and real estate. There were a relatively low proportion in agriculture, education, construction, hotels and restaurants. Of the ward's residents aged 16–74, 36.8% had a higher education qualification or the equivalent, compared with 27.4% nationwide.
Sports and recreation
Kings Hill Cricket Club was established in 2006 to make use of the new cricket pitch opposite the Discovery School. The club played its inaugural match against Town Malling Cricket Club in September 2006 at the historic Old County Ground, West Malling. Chris Blackham captained the team to their first win against Snodland in early 2007. In January 2008 the club adopted the de Havilland Mosquito aircraft as its badge in memory of the role West Malling airfield played during the Second World War as a night fighter station. The Kings Hill Ground hosted its first game, again versus Town Malling on the 17th of July 2010, with former English international cricketer Derek Underwood on hand to perform the opening ceremony.
Kings Hill Football Club was established in 2003. The club has over 300 players across 26 teams of all ages from children to over-50s. The men's team plays in the Maidstone & District Football League. In September 2013 the club moved to a new home ground, Kings Hill Sports Park, a facility run and maintained by Kings Hill Parish Council. The park features five professionally-laid, high-quality grass football pitches, a floodlit full-size Artificial turf pitch (which also hosts rugby training), and a pavilion with eight changing rooms, bar and social area.
- [dead link]
- [dead link]
- "Control Tower and Central area expansion of Liberty Square". Kings-hill.com. Retrieved 2013-01-15.
- Sculptures at Kings Hill[dead link]
- Neighbourhood Statistics. "Neighbourhood statistics - Kings Hill ward". Neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
- Doward, Jamie (2006-06-20). "How postcodes put the wealthy in their place". Guardian Newspapers.
- "Neighbourhood Statistics". Statistics.gov.uk. Retrieved 2008-02-22.
- "de beste bron van informatie over me19 kings hill west malling". me19.co.uk. Retrieved 2013-01-15.
- "Cricket legend opens new ground". Kings-hill.com. 2010-07-06. Retrieved 2013-01-15.
- "£4million sports park handed over to the people of Kings Hill". Kings-hill.com. 2013-08-21. Retrieved 2013-10-24.
- "Maidstone & District Football League sponsored by Express Cabs". Full-time.thefa.com. Retrieved 2013-08-14.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kings Hill.|