Reigate Town Hall
Reigate shown within Surrey
|OS grid reference|
|District||Reigate and Banstead|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Ambulance||South East Coast|
|EU Parliament||South East England|
Reigate // is a historic town in Surrey, England, at the foot of the North Downs, and in the London commuter belt. It has a medieval castle and covers several mounds of a short section of the Greensand Ridge. Reigate is one of three towns in the borough of Reigate and Banstead. The swathe of land from the town southwards, including the adjacent town of Redhill, is sometimes grouped together as the Gatwick Diamond, M23 corridor or Crawley Urban Area across more than 15 miles (24 km) into West Sussex. These three largely synonymous areas are interspersed with Metropolitan Green Belt land and are used by planners to highlight connectivity to Gatwick Airport and in respect of two, the city of Brighton and Hove. Reigate has been a market town since the medieval period, when it became a parliamentary borough.
Colley Hill, one mile (1.6 km) north-west of Reigate, is the sixth highest point in Surrey at 756 feet (230 m). Reigate Hill, 2.5 miles (4.0 km) due east of Colley Hill, is the seventh highest point in Surrey at 723 feet (220 m) — both have panoramas along the North Downs Way.
- 1 History
- 2 Today
- 3 Travel
- 4 Hamlets and neighbourhoods of Reigate
- 5 Neighbouring settlements
- 6 Economy
- 7 Governance
- 8 Places of worship
- 9 Education
- 10 Sport and leisure
- 11 Notable people
- 12 Notable pets
- 13 See also
- 14 References
- 15 External links
There are neolithic flint mines on the ridge of the North Downs above Reigate. The Bronze Age barrows on Reigate Heath indicate ancient settlement in the area. A Bronze Age spearhead was recovered on Park Hill in Reigate Priory Park. In 2004, a Roman tile kiln dated from around AD 92 (pictured left) was recovered from the grounds of Rosehill in Doods Way, Reigate. Tiles on the Rosehill site were first discovered in the 1880s. The tiles would have been used for important buildings in the area. The Rosehill find is also the oldest recorded use of Reigate Stone (ironstone of the Upper Greensand) for "ashlar (uniform blocks) masonry work".
The town lay within the Reigate hundred, an Anglo-Saxon administrative division. Reigate appears in Domesday Book in 1086 as Cherchefelle which appears to mean 'the open space by the hill'. (The name has nothing to do with the church and the element Cherche is a later corruption.) It was held by William the Conqueror as successor to king Harold's widow Editha. Its Domesday assets were: 34 hides, 2 mills worth 11s 10d, 29 ploughs, 12 acres (49,000 m2) of meadow, pannage and herbage worth 183 hogs. It rendered £40.
The earlier site was, at least in part, in what is now the Church Street area of Reigate, close to the church. Part of the site was excavated in the 1990s. It was shown that the settlement moved during the earlier part of the 12th century when the present town was formed. William I granted the land around Reigate to one of his supporters, William de Warenne, who was created Earl of Surrey in 1088. It is believed that his son, William de Warenne, 2nd Earl of Surrey, ordered that Reigate Castle be built, although the de Warennes had their southern base at Lewes, Sussex, as well as castles in Yorkshire and Normandy. Around 1150 the Earl de Warenne laid out a new town below the castle. This town forms the basis of modern-day Reigate. Little is known of the Castle which has never been excavated on any great scale. Local legend says that prior to the signing of the Magna Carta, the rebellious barons met to hammer out the details of the document in the extensive caves beneath the castle. The story however has no truth to it. The castle later fell into decay and the remains were demolished at the end of the 17th century, though the grounds remain as a public garden, and the caves are occasionally opened for tours.
The medieval town is centred on a north—south road of some antiquity as it incorporates the pre-Conquest road pattern. The story of the Pilgrim's Way passing through Reigate is a myth, although in the 13th century a chapel to St Thomas was built in the town centre for the use of Canterbury pilgrims.
Areas of the town have been the subject of extensive archaeological investigation. Bell Street was certainly in existence by the middle of the 12th century and Mesolithic implements have been found here. Much of the High Street appears to be slightly later although there appear to have been buildings along the south side of the Street near to the junction with Bell Street by the 13th century at the latest. The market place was originally around Slipshoe Street, at the junction of West Street, but infilled houses encroached on it and it had been moved to the east end of the High Street by the end of the 16th century. The results of much of this work have been published; many of the finds are held in the museum of the Holmesdale Natural History Club in Croydon Road.
Probably early in the 13th century Reigate Priory was founded for regular Canons of the Order of St Augustine although it was strictly speaking the Hospital of the Crutched Friars - a suborder. After the dissolution of the monasteries in 1535 the estate was granted by Henry VIII to William Howard, 1st Baron Howard of Effingham, who soon converted the Priory buildings into a residence. The Effingham branch of the Howard family, including the Earl of Nottingham who as Lord High Admiral commanded the force which defeated the Spanish Armada, lived there until their heirs sold it to the wealthy London brewer, John Parsons in 1681. Remains of the former monastery buildings are known to lie beneath the lawns to the south of the present mainly 18th-century house, which is now used as a school.
The town developed a large trade in oatmeal during the 16th century but this had ceased by about 1720. There was a noted tannery at Linkfield Street which was expanded in the 19th century. It burnt down about 1930.
The coming of the Brighton railway in 1841 led to development across the parish, and saw a second town emerge in the eastern fields around the railway station in an area that was previously uninhabited: this town at first had two names but since the early 20th century, has been called Redhill.
Reigate has two windmills: a post mill on Reigate Heath and a tower mill on Wray Common. In the medieval period the parish had other windmills, about a dozen animal-powered mills for oatmeal and watermills on the southern parish boundary with the Mole and Redhill Brook. Reigate is the setting for the Sherlock Holmes short story The Adventure of the Reigate Squire, also known as The Adventure of the Reigate Squires and The Adventure of the Reigate Puzzle. It is one of 12 stories featured in The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes.
- Administrative history
The 1295-formed (non-corporate) Borough of Reigate (roughly the town centre of Reigate) elected two MPs until the Reform Act of 1832 when it lost one; it was disenfranchised in 1868 for corruption but revived in the reform of 1885 and Reigate has been the term for the local MP's seat ever since. In 1863, the whole parish was formally incorporated as a borough with Thomas Dann as its first Mayor. The urbanising by-and-large rural area of Banstead (on the widest part of the Downs) succeeded to this status on a merger with the Borough Reigate in 1974. Redhill gained its first of two vestries in the post-medieval to mid-19th century parish system occupying the east of Reigate (not distinct at the time from a civil parish) in 1867.
The town centre is, save for the castle, focused on Bell Street, leading south, and a long High Street/West Street conservation area with shops, cafés, bars and restaurants. Between the streets is a Morrisons supermarket. The other central supermarket is an M&S. Reigate has a tea room, independent toy shop and delicatessen.
The most popular park in Reigate is the Priory Park, adjoining Reigate Priory School directly south of the High Street and west of Bell Street. It has a recreation area for smaller children as well as football fields, tennis courts, a skatepark, woodland and large Priory Pond, draining over a small weir. Priory Park also has a café set in a building named 'The Pavilion', which also houses bulletin boards for the people of Reigate.
Reigate is also home to Pilgrim Brewery, which moved to its West Street address in 1984. It was the first new brewery to be established in Surrey for over a century and is well known for the quality and variety of beers brewed using the local water.
- Reigate is served by Reigate railway station. At peak times a few direct trains run to London Victoria and London Bridge at 40-minute intervals. Off-peak trains run to Gatwick Airport, Reading, Redhill and London Bridge (cut back from London Charing Cross in the December 2009 timetable). Trains to London are run by the (New) Southern Railway company and those to Gatwick Airport and Reading by First Great Western.
- Reigate is a few minutes from Junction 8 of the London orbital M25 motorway. The town's one-way system includes parts of the A25 and the A217.
- Reigate is linked to Redhill by the Metrobus routes 435 and 430. The 435 tends to go into Reigate whereas the 430 goes "away" from Reigate. Other bus routes also link the town to other areas in and around Redhill and Reigate, for example South Park.
Hamlets and neighbourhoods of Reigate
Neighbourhoods of Reigate share very historic characteristics of the town itself, in particular, the loosely demarcated Reigate Hill to the north of the town, for which a sign exists going northbound on the A217 heading towards the M25 Reigate Hill junction; however, this is not the case on approaching from other directions, due in part to the undulating outskirts of the town. Due to its size and scale of amenities Woodhatch, Reigate is covered separately. Due to its rural character, interspersed in its outskirts, by the London Orbital motorway, Gatton also is dealt with separately.
Skimmington is a small hamlet made up of Skimmington Cottages, Heathfield Farm and Nursery, and on the C-road, Flanchford Road, Reigate Heath Golf Club House and Course. The Skimmington Castle (the most historic building, Grade II-listed) pub is by the cottages. It arguably includes most of Reigate Heath; its buildings are however predominantly south-east of Flanchford Road. Skimmington includes eight pre-historic tumuli (bowl barrows), two in one close group, several within the golf club. It is popular among walkers for its serenity, hills and woods as it lies on the Greensand Way only 1 mile (1.6 km) along the due west path in the south of Reigate Park or Priory Park.
Its proximity to Reigate and to the out-of-town shopping parade of Woodhatch means that South Park consists of residential and recreational green spaces. Its notable amenities comprise South Park Sports Association and the independent Sandcross Lane Church.
||Mogador, Walton-on-the-Hill||Margery, Lower Kingswood||Gatton, Merstham|
|Leigh||Sidlow||Earlswood, Salfords and Horley|
At one time the airline Air Europe had its head office in Europe House in Reigate. Redland plc the FTSE 100 building materials company was headquartered in Reigate before its acquisition by Lafarge. The insurance company Esure is in the former Redland headquarters, and the Redland brick sculpture remains in front of the building.
|2013||Dr Zully Grant-Duff||Reigate|
|2013||Barbara Thomson||Earlswood and Reigate South|
5 councillors sit on Reigate and Banstead borough council, who operate a council-elected-in-thirds system, which results in voting for one local candidate in three out of every four years:
|2010||Adam de Save||Reigate Central|
|2011||Steve Farrer||Reigate Central|
|2011||Christopher Whinney||Reigate Central|
|2008||Roger Newstead||Reigate Hill|
|2010||Lisa Brunt||Reigate Hill|
Places of worship
Reigate has several churches. St Mary's Parish Church (Anglican) is in Chart Lane east of the town centre with its notably old chapel of ease St Cross in the windmill on Reigate Heath (see 'Flanchford' below). Reigate Methodist Church is in the town centre. Reigate Baptist Church, Reigate Park URC, Sandcross Church, and Reigate and Redhill Community Church are further out. The Holy Family Catholic Church is the only Roman Catholic Church in Reigate. The Religious Society of Friends have a meeting house on Reigate Road (Thomas Moore House).
- Dovers Green Infant School (Infant school)
- Holmesdale Community Infant School (Infant school)
- Orchards Infant School (Infant school)
- Reigate Parish Church School (Infant school)
- Reigate Priory School (Junior school)
- Reigate St. Mary's School (Prep school)
- Sandcross School (Junior school)
- Wray Common Primary School (Primary school)
- Reigate College (Sixth form college)
- Reigate Grammar School (Secondary school)
- Reigate School (Secondary school)
- The Royal Alexandra and Albert School (Secondary school)
- Dunottar School (Girls' secondary school)
Sport and leisure
Reigate is home to Old Reigatians Rugby Football Club, at Park Lane off the high street adjacent to the town's only cricket club, Reigate Priory CC. It is also home to Reigate Rugby Club off Colley Lane, Reigate.
- Ray Alan, ventriloquist, and "Lord Charles" lived their final years in Reigate.
- George Best, Manchester United and Northern Ireland football player lived his last years near Reigate.
- Roger Bisby, journalist, television presenter and radio personality.
- Hermann Bondi, the Austrian physicist and mathematician lived in Reigate in the 1970s.
- Tom and Max Chilton, racing drivers, were born in and later lived in Reigate.
- Norman Cook, disc jockey, was born in Reigate and attended Reigate Grammar School.
- James Cudworth, Locomotive Superintendent to the South Eastern Railway lived in Reigate from c. 1879 to 1899.
- Cherith Baldry, author of the Warriors novels.
- Bob Doe, Royal Air Force Wing Commander.
- Mia Farrow, film actress, lived here while married to André Previn
- Newton Faulkner, songwriter and musician, was born here.
- Dame Margot Fonteyn, ballet dancer, was born here.
- Louise Fribo, dancer, has a flat here.
- Francis Frith, photographer and businessman, lived here.
- Susan Gritton, opera singer, was born here in 1965.
- Melvyn Hayes, aka Gloria in It Ain't Half Hot Mum was a resident of Glover's Road.
- Kate Maberly, actress and star of the 1993 feature film The Secret Garden, was born here and attended Dunottar School
- Ian McKay (formerly Laidlaw), art critic, writer and publisher, lived here and attended Reigate School of Art & Design.
- Ray Mears, survival expert, attended Reigate Grammar School.
- Jean Metcalfe, broadcaster.
- Cliff Michelmore, broadcaster.
- Spike Milligan, writer and comedian, used to live at Woodhatch in Orchard Way.
- Alan Minter, boxer, former Undisputed World Middleweight boxing champion, lives in Reigate.
- Nicholas Owen, BBC News presenter, lives in Reigate.
- Samuel Palmer, visionary British artist, is buried in Reigate St Mary's churchyard, having lived in Reigate from about 1860 to 1862.
- Pat Pocock, former England and Surrey cricketer, lives in Reigate.
- Caroline Quentin, actress, was born in Reigate.
- Eleanour Sinclair Rohde, gardener, lived for many years in Reigate.
- Mike Sammes, of the Mike Sammes Singers was born in the town and educated at Reigate Grammar School
- Richard Thomas, the former Information Commissioner, lives in Reigate
- David Walliams, writer and star of the Little Britain comedy series attended Reigate Grammar School.
- Disclosure, band.
William Howard, 1st Baron Howard of Effingham is buried here
- Brayley, Edward (1850). A topographical history of Surrey 4. London: G Willis. p. 218. OCLC 4601837.
- Reigate and Banstead Borough Council: A Brief History of Reigate
- Old Reigate: A Pictorial History
- "Reigate Caves". East Surrey Explorers. Retrieved 2009-08-19.[dead link]
- Wright, Christopher (1971). A Guide to the Pilgrims' Way. London: Constable. p. 134. ISBN 0-09-456240-7.
- English Heritage. SMR
- Hooper . Reigate; its story through the ages
- Greenwood,J. Turnpikes and the economy. 2008
- Farries and Mason. Mills of Surrey
- A Vision of Britain: First mention of Redhill, units and statistics University of Portsmouth and others
- "Conservation Area Map". Reigate and Banstead Borough Council. Retrieved 2012-04-26.
- "Tea Room site". Vintage Tea Rooms. Retrieved 2012-04-26.
- "Cullenders fine foods and delicatessen". Cullenders. Retrieved 2012-04-26.
- "The Toy Shop". The Toy Shop, Reigate. Retrieved 2012-04-26.
- Grid Reference Finder Elevation Tools compare parts of Reigate Hill to Wray Common, Doods Park Road and Underhill Park Road for example
- English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1029061)". National Heritage List for England.
- Bowl barrows on Reigate Heath:English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1008849)". National Heritage List for England.
English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1008851)". National Heritage List for England.
English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1008852)". National Heritage List for England.
English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1008857)". National Heritage List for England.
English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1008869)". National Heritage List for England.
English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1008871)". National Heritage List for England.
English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1008872)". National Heritage List for England.
- Open Street Map
- English Heritage. "Details from listed building database (1029111)". National Heritage List for England.
- Sandcross.com Sandcross Lane Church, Reigate. Retrieved 2013-11-20
- citation of Sandcross Lane Church at Charitychoice.co.uk Retrieved 2013-11-20
- "World Airline Directory". Flight International. 26 July 1980. 274. "Head Office: Europe House, Bancroft Road, Reigate, Surrey, Great Britain."
- "List of County Councillors". Surrey County Council. Retrieved 2012-04-26.
- Reigate and Banstead councillors
- St Mary's church, Reigate
- Reigate Methodist Church
- Reigate Baptist Church
- Reigate Park Church
- Holy Family Church, Reigate
- W. Hooper. Reigate; its story through the ages. 1945
- J. Greenwood. Turnpikes and the economy: the case of Reigate
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Reigate.|
|Wikisource has the text of the 1905 New International Encyclopedia article Reigate.|
- "Reigate". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). 1911
- Reigate Society
- Reigate Roman tile kiln excavation