Londoners sold on the idea of living well in Tunbridge Wells

What the garden looked like before
Royal Wells Park

AMID the rising fears about street crime and pollution in the capital, Londoners and commuters were given a glossy taste of a far more wholesome life in Tunbridge Wells last week, which for many came as a breath of fresh air. Estate agents Savills, who hosted the gathering, revealed that a high percentage of their buyers in Tunbridge Wells work in London, with 70 per cent of those buying homes for more than £1million. And guests heard how, over the next five years, owners in the region could well see more value added to their properties than those in London. Lavish
The event was held at Savills’ West End headquarters in Margaret Street to persuade a variety of guests of the lifestyle benefits of moving to the royal spa town, which was built after consumptive Londoner Lord North discoverd the Chalybeate spring in 1606. He soon spread the word back in London about the spring’s amazing healing properties, and the rest is, literally, history. The agents showcased the large and lavish Berkeley Homes development Royal Wells Park, which has been built on the site of the old Kent & Sussex Hospital on Mount Ephraim. It offers a mix of one, two, and three-bedroom apartments and three, four and five-bedroom houses, with prices starting at £300,000 for apartments and £600,000 for houses. Tunbridge Wells is a regular favourite in surveys about top places to live and quality of life, so this was one estate agent ‘sell’ that promised to be a breeze. Tom Bryant, who is based at the Sevenoaks branch and is Savills’ Head of Residential Development Sales in the South East, said: “Over 60 per cent of buyers who have purchased properties in Tunbridge Wells from Savills cited London as their place of employment, with that figure rising to 70 per cent for properties purchased for over £1million. “Tunbridge Wells, being within easy reach of London by rail and the motorway network, is becoming increasingly popular with commuters seeking a better quality of life outside the capital. “The town, which was recently named as runner-up in a poll of the top ten family zones to live in London and the home counties by The Evening Standard, benefits from a wealth of excellent private and state education. This has led to many families moving out of London to live within the catchment areas of its highly-rated grammar schools and popular faith schools.” He added that their guests were very keen to find out more about moving to Tunbridge Wells. “With a wealth of entertainment, high-end shopping and bars and restaurants on the doorstep, including The Ivy and Thackerays, Tunbridge Wells is an exceptional place to live – and with a journey time to London Bridge from only 43 minutes by train, it offers an easy commute and a superb quality of life for the whole family. “A number of attendees were keen to visit Royal Wells Park in person to experience for themselves what Tunbridge Wells can offer. It was a very positive evening.” The latest Savills research into the Tunbridge Wells property market offered insights for relocaters and investors on the current financial performance and outlook, and how the South East is expected to be a more attractive proposition for adding value to property than London over the next five years.

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