Living in Horley
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As well as all the local amenities on offer, our Living in Horley guide will provide you with a flavour for what it is like living in the town, its history, culture and all the entertainment and fun recreational activities to take advantage of!
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What Is Life Like In Horley?
Located on the picturesque border of Surrey and West Sussex, Horley is a thriving town neighbouring Gatwick airport, just south of Reigate and Redhill.
Horley has a busy community scene with interesting and welcoming groups for all ages to join and enjoy. With a population of over 22,000, the Surrey town has all the amenities you could need, whilst still retaining a small and friendly feel.
With Gatwick airport nearby and fantastic transport links to London the area is a perfect choice for those working within the travel industries and those commuting to the capital.
History Of Horley
Horley has a vast history, dating back to the Anglo-Saxon era and is even mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086. During this time it was known as the Manor of Horley and in a ‘hundred’ named Cherchefelle, which in 1199 became Reigate. In 1539, The Manor passed to Henry VIII after the dissolution of the monasteries and then changed hands multiple times over the next sixty years.
In 1602 it became the property of Christ’s Hospital in London and a map of the area reveals that Horley consisted of three hamlets (one by St Bartholomew’s Church and the Six Bells public house, another located by the River Mole and the third in Horley Row – still home to some of the town’s oldest buildings!) and a common. Fast forward 200 years and, with the introduction of two turnpikes, Horley became a stop-off point on the London to Brighton regular coach route. Then, in 1841 the railway was laid and the station opened.
In the last forty years, Horley (and the surrounding areas, including Charlwood and Gatwick) has been listed in two counties – West Sussex in 1972 and returned to Surrey, after local opposition in 1974.
Days Out In Horley
Horley may be a commuter town, but that doesn’t mean that there’s not lots to do!
The town has so much to explore! Enjoy a dip at Horley Leisure Centre, a modern sports complex complete with 25m swimming pool and gym, visit the insightful Gatwick Aviation Museum (from April 2016), which showcases amazing aircraft, or perhaps saddle up and take a ride through the countryside at one of Horley’s many riding schools.
Horley Carnival, St George’s Day and Christmas Shopping events, all organised by the town’s groups and organisations, are not to be missed! During these feel-good community events, the town unites to celebrate. Expect to see local stalls fill the High Street, performances from arts groups and enjoy the real fun-filled spirit of Horley!
Things To Do In Horley
From taking a trip down the town’s high street with its plethora of independent shops and cafes including; Collingwood and Batchellor, The Old Fire Station Café and Serendipity Coffee Co. to painting pottery at Bluebell Studio and watching a show at Horley’s Archway Theatre, there’s plenty to do this bustling town.
Horley is a regular winner at the South and South East in Bloom’s awards and has won a prestigious Silver Gilt for the town centre’s blooming lovely floral displays, for five years in a row, along with other areas of the town – the committee are always on the look-out for more green-fingered locals to take part.
The town has a real community feel and boasts a varied range of groups to join, from W.I’s to the fundraising clubs like the Horley and District Lions, there’s the Horley Photographic Club for snap-happy locals and a History Society for those keen on finding out more about the area. There are groups for all ages to enjoy and get involved with including many mum and toddler meet ups and a busy Young People’s Centre.
Schools In Horley
Horley has a number of excellent schools and educational facilities within close proximity.
- Bobtails Pre-School
- Horley Community Pre-School
- Rainbow Pre-School
- Manorfield Primary and Nursery School
- Redehall Preparatory School Foundation Ltd
- Willow Tree Montessori School
Primary schools include:
- Burstow Primary School
- Charlwood Village Infant School
- Horley Infant School
- Manorfield Primary
- Meath Green Infant School
- Meath Green Junior School
- Redehall Preparatory School
- Langshott Infant School
- Yattendon School
Secondary schools include:
- Oakwood School
Transport In Horley
Horley has fantastic transport links, with buses and trains running to nearby towns, villages and London.
Horley’s busy train station is well connected, with routes into London Victoria taking on average 45 minutes, London Bridge in 50 minutes, Brighton in 30 minutes and Gatwick Airport in just 2 minutes!
Buses and coaches
Horley is serviced by Metrobus, Southdown buses and Compass Travel with routes 20, 100, 400, 424, 460 covering Three Bridges, Gatwick Airport, Crawley, Redhill, Caterham and Reigate. All routes run at least once an hour, five days a week, throughout the year.
Less frequent routes include the 26 which covers Crawley, Hookwood and Charlwood, the 123 which runs around the town and the 420 to Sutton, Banstead, Tadworth, Redhill and Reigate.
London Gatwick airport is just 10 minutes drive away.
Horley is conveniently located near the M23 which links to the M25. Driving to Brighton takes approximately 40 minutes, while central London is just 90 minutes away.