Historically part of Kent, Orpington is a charming market town in the London Borough of Bromley. Close to the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it offers you the chance to enjoy a relaxed, country lifestyle while being only a short distance from central London.
Orpington is a town steeped in history. First recorded in 1038, during the reign of King Canute, its beautiful parish church – All Saints – also traces its origins back to Saxon times. Orpington Priory, a medieval hall house, still stands and its gardens form an attractive park that is open to the public, offering a children’s playground, a natural pond, and regular community events.
From Orpington station, you can be in central London in under half an hour, with trains leaving every few minutes. London Bridge is 16 minutes away, Charing Cross is 27 and Victoria only 38 minutes away.
So whether you need to commute or simply want to enjoy a day among the sights and sounds of one of the world’s greatest cities, you can be in the heart of the action in next to no time.
If you like to keep active, there are many excellent sports and leisure facilities in and around Orpington. Major gyms such as LA Fitness and PureGym are perfect for regular workouts. Nearby Darrick Sports has recently expanded offering a 30 piece fitness suite and a host of sessions and activities including badminton, aerobics and trampolining. If you prefer boutique fitness specialists then you have Shapers and Body Contours to choose from. Classes in karate, yoga, taekwondo and other activities are also available in the town.
When it comes to enjoying the great outdoors, there are plenty of great parks and green spaces in Orpington. You’ll also be near the Cray Valley Golf Course, a state-of-the-art facility with 54 holes, a new FootGolf course, floodlit driving range and a choice of excellent tuition. For a truly exciting experience, you can also explore the five zones at the Delta Force paintballing centre.
Of course, if you simply enjoy walking in some of England’s finest countryside, you are only a short distance from the Kent Downs and Surrey Hills – both Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Orpington is a great place to shop, no matter what you’re looking to buy. The Walnuts Shopping Centre is home to nearly 40 outlets, ranging from Bella Italia and New Look to flower shops, a jeweller and an Odeon cinema. The High Street itself has a range of independent shops and major names, from Costa and Boots to small beauty salons, eateries and travel agents.
Only slightly further afield, the Nugent Shopping Centre to the north of the town offers nearly 30 stores, including Laura Ashley. Clarks, Next, M&S and Waterstones, and has ample and convenient parking.
You’ll be only four miles from Intu Bromley, a shopping centre with over 100 outlets under one roof, including luxury brands such as Hobbs, Karen Millen, Fat Face, Zara and Superdry. And when you’ve shopped until you’ve nearly dropped, you can unwind in one of its coffee shops or even treat yourself to lunch at Carluccio’s.
Both Bluewater and Lakeside are also only a 30 minute drive away, with hundreds of stores and a variety of restaurants so you’re never short of places to indulge yourself.
There is so much to explore in the countryside, towns and villages surrounding Orpington. You will be just a short drive from the Kent Downs, where it embraces Shoreham and Eynsford, offering attractions such as Polhill Bank Nature Reserve, Lullingtone Castle and World Garden, featuring exotic plants from around the globe.
You’ll also be near Down House, the former family home of Charles Darwin, which is now lovingly cared for by the English Heritage, with beautiful grounds and a popular café offering dishes made with produce from its own kitchen garden.
Less than 30 minutes south of Orpington, you can also visit Godstone Vineyards, which produces first-class white, rosé and sparkling wines. You can take part in wine tastings, enjoy lunch, explore the vines and even go fishing in the lake.
This corner of Kent has so much to offer, no matter what your mood or interests – perfect for every modern family.
Previously rated as one of the very best places in the UK for children to get an education, Orpington schools provide children with a strong foundation. Within Orpington you will find Darrick Wood School which backs onto the development. A school that has successfully achieved the world class schools quality mark, and a secondary school rated outstanding by Ofsted. Darrick Wood offers classes for infants through to sixth form. St. Olave’s Grammar School for boys also admits girls into its sixth form, and places there are highly prized. Newstead Wood School for girls is also a popular selective school with an 11+ intake and a mixed sixth form. Harris Academy is an ambitious academy at the heart of the local community providing mixed places for 7-13 year olds. Both offer an excellent education and deliver outstanding academic results. The non-selective Priory School also has an excellent reputation.
You will find a good choice of excellent primary schools in the area, with Darrick Wood, Farnborough Primary School and Warren Road Primary School deserving special mention. You can also choose from a good selection of independent schools within the Borough of Bromley, including Keston CE and Harris Primary Academy.