If you’re looking for a change, this ever-popular Sussex town offers a country lifestyle for a good price.
Whether you want a new home for the family or a convenient London commute, this area is well worth some consideration…
Shops and restaurants
Crowborough is spoiled when it comes to supermarkets, featuring branches of Morrisons, Lidl, Waitrose and Tesco alongside smaller Sainsbury’s and Marks & Spencer outlets. Meanwhile, the high street features many familiar chain stores such as Boots, WH Smith and The Original Factory Shop, alongside independent traders including popular gift shop Zest, fashion boutiques Wardrobe and Mulberry’s, The Shoe Shop and wine merchant Cork and Keg. A farmers’ market in Croft Road on the fourth Saturday of every month completes the town’s retail offering.
The town offers a number of pubs. There’s the popular Blue Anchor in Beacon Road that serves great food and the recently refurbished JD Wetherspoon’s also in Beacon Road while watering holes in outlying areas include The Wheatsheaf in Mount Pleasant. Alternatively, Bar Trend in Croft Road doubles as a coffee shop during the day and a wine bar in the evening.
Crowborough also boasts more than 30 restaurants and takeaways, with Thai eatery Pusanon in Croft Road currently considered one of the best. Jade’s Palace Chinese restaurant in Eridge Road and curry houses the Rose of Bengal in Crowborough Hill and Rajpoot in London Road are also rated highly by locals.
There are many well-regarded schools in the town, including eight primaries. These are:
- St Mary’s Catholic Primary School in Chapel Green (Rated Good when last inspected by Ofsted in December 2012)
- Ashdown Primary School, Luxford Road (Good, May 2013)
- Grove Park School, Church Road (Good, March 2014)
- St John’s Church of England Primary School, School Lane (Good, March 2016)
- Jarvis Brook Primary School, Hadlow Down Road (Good, November 2015)
- Rotherfield Primary School, North Street (Good, May 2012)
- Mark Cross Church of England Aided Primary School, Mark Cross (Outstanding, June 2009)
- Sir Henry Fermor (aided) Church of England School, Crowborough Hill (Requires Improvement, October 2015)
The town’s only secondary school is Beacon Academy in North Beeches Road. It was rated Good when last inspected by Ofsted in May 2013.
There is also a good provision for pre-school age children, with a large number of nursery schools and registered childminders operating in the town.
The well-equipped Crowborough Leisure Centre features an indoor swimming pool, outdoor running track, gym, studios for group activity classes (energy, mind and body, and spinning) and a sports hall for badmintion, five-a-side football and basketball. It also provides a beautiful view of the surrounding countryside. Nearby is a skate park, playground, miniature railway and model boating lake, plus a caravan and camping site. The town offers a range of public sporting facilities, as well as private clubs and associations, where residents can participate in rugby, football, tennis, petanque, badminton, table tennis, squash, angling, cycling, running and martial arts. In addition, the beautiful Ashdown Forest – the setting for the Winnie the Pooh stories – offers untold acres of space for letting off steam within a stone’s throw of the town.
More sedate activities are available in the form of Crowborough’s community clubs and groups such as the WI, amateur dramatics, singing, flower arranging, Scouts and cadets, bridge, dog training and painting. These pursuits are hosted in a variety of halls dotted throughout the town, among which is the centrally located Crowborough Community Centre which hosts regular events including a monthly cinema night.
Council tax brackets
Crowborough lies within the district of Wealden in East Sussex. The annual council tax charged by the authority for a Band D house located in the town during the 2016/17 financial year is £1,816.52. The national average for such a property is £1,530, with the averages for Band D homes in rural districts being £1,601 and £1,306 in London.
Of this payment, 71.21 per cent goes to East Sussex County Council and 10.09 per cent to Wealden District Council for the provision of services and maintenance and development of infrastructure. The remainder is divided between the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner (8.47 per cent), East Sussex Fire Authority (4.93 per cent) and town or parish councils (5.3 per cent).
Southern offers a direct rail service to London via Crowborough station at Jarvis Brook or Eridge station (4.2 miles away, a little further up the same line), with an approximate journey time to London Bridge of 61 minutes. Alternatively, travelling with Southeastern via Tunbridge Wells station (about 8 miles away), a journey to London Bridge takes around 46 minutes, with services proceeding to Waterloo East, Charing Cross or Cannon Street.
For motorists, Crowborough has a convenient location on the A26, just 20 miles south of London’s orbital motorway, the M25, which provides access to all national routes. To the south, the bright lights of Brighton lie just 26 miles away, via the A26 and A27. Other south coast resorts, including Eastbourne (27 miles) and Hastings (28 miles), are also within easy reach while international flights can be accessed via Gatwick Airport, which lies 22 miles away to the north west.
The town is also served by the 29 bus route, which runs between Tunbridge Wells (20 minutes away) and Brighton (80 minutes).