Embroiled with rich history and many links to the blue-blooded past of England is Kingston Upon Thames (often referred to as Kingston), the primary settlement of the Royal Borough of Kingston Upon Thames in South West London. The area is comprised of the four wards of Canbury, Grove, Norbiton and Tudor.
History of Kingston upon thames
Kingston Upon Thames dates back to the 800's and was originally an old market town with Royal connections and a rich history in culture. The name derives from Kinges Tun, which means Royal Farm/Estate. The Royal links to the town date back over a thousand years and it is believed that seven Saxon Kings were crowned there. References to this are all over the area’s monuments and buildings mentioning its history.
Kingston has many types of architecture dating back to Victorian times, with Edwardian type buildings through to more modern builds. Recently the town has become popular with young professionals and that has seen many one, two and three bedroom flats developed there.
Cheapest two bedroom flat to rent - £1000 pcm
Most Expensive two bedroom flat to rent - a whopping £8740 pcm although it's a highly sought after riverside apartment with a private terrace featuring views of The Thames.
Council tax ranges from £1118 to £3356 annually.
Kingston is twelve miles outside of central London but isn’t served by a local tube station. There is an overground from Kingston, Norbiton and Hampton Wick stations, which are roughly a twenty-five minute journey to Waterloo. The town is served by forty bus routes including eight night buses. The A3 is the main link-up road to central London, and if you’re travelling to Kingston by car you can be reassured by the fact that there is plenty of parking available.
The Druid’s Head
Perhaps more of a pub but surely worth a mention because of the history and culture that resonates throughout this quirkily laid out establishment. Perfect for ale lovers. It’s said that in the 18th century it became one of the first taverns to make the now world famous 'Syllabub' dessert. It’s relaxed, friendly and has a great atmosphere.
Address: 3 Market Pl, Kingston upon Thames KT1 1JT
Phone: 020 8546 0723
Cappadocia serves up authentic Turkish cuisine using fresh ingredients cooked in an open kitchen by chefs native to the country. Head down there on a Thursday for an even more authentic feel, where belly dancers snake their way around the tables of the restaurant to traditional Turkish music.
Are you a vegetarian or a person with dietary needs and a love of beautiful views of The Thames? Great! This restaurant will be the one for you. Winner of London’s best vegetarian restaurant in 2012 and established since 1989, this restaurant caters for those with more sensitive needs when it comes to dining out.
Continuing our theme of catering for those with dietary needs, The Healthy Cook Co is a bakery that offers cakes and baked goods that are free of gluten, dairy, egg and sugar. All products are certified gluten free.
For an authentic Italian experience from top to bottom, look no further than this restaurant. They will make you feel like you’re in a scene from Goodfellas (no, not the violent scenes, think Joe Pesci, De Niro and Ray Liotta having dinner with his Gran!). From the moment you walk in to the way the food is prepared and cooked, you won’t be let down!
The Bentall Centre is located on Clarence Street and is a true shopper’s haven. It features the centres flagship store Bentalls. This store alone features a wealth of food choices and all the biggest name brands for men, women and kids. The Centre has over eighty shops as well as offering services like the Full Health Club.
The Ancient Market Place has two parts that you can delve into at quite opposite ends of the financial spectrum. One is the traditional market place that holds a wealth of fruit and veg stores as well as butchers, florists and more. The area is also renowned for its high-end stores; The White Company, Molton Brown and more along with fashion boutiques.
Old London Road
The fallen over red phone boxes welcome you into London Road, go beyond them to discover an abundance of quirky and independent shops. There are over a hundred dealers offering up antiques and vintage items. You’d be wise to leave no stone unturned in this area, as you could just unearth a hidden gem!
Eden Walk is another shopping centre with a great mix of shops and restaurants. You’ll find high street chains like H & M, Marks & Spencer, and many eateries to fuel up before going again after lunch!
The River Thames runs for three miles alongside Kingston and connects the town to central London. There are many beautiful spots to stop and stare and it’s a prime spot for events like the Kingston Regatta. The walk along the Queen’s Promenade is a great stretch that runs from Kingston Bridge to Surbiton.
Rose Theatre opened in 2008 and has been home to many great comedy performances as well as some serious theatre too. It seats up to nine hundred people and is inspired by London’s Elizabeth Rose Theatre in Bankside.
Out Of Order
Out Of Order is an art installation located just as you enter Old London Road. By artist David Mach, it features ten telephone boxes falling onto each other with a domino-effect. It’s a great thing to say you’ve seen and get a picture of!
Not exactly an attraction as such as it goes on in a number of areas with schools, workshops and various projects participating. The event takes place from the 5th of July until the 26th. Streets and venues all over Kingston will be full of vibrant performances from participants between the ages of five and twenty-six.
Main picture from www.manversusworld.com