Acres of green space, independent shops and large houses are the name of the game in Keston, a Greater London village located a few miles from Bromley. If you're tired of the hustle and bustle of the city, Keston could offer the perfect solution.
Surrounded by the Kent countryside, there's a strong rural vibe going on in Keston. And it won't come as a surprise to learn that the village is in demand with young families looking to lay down roots.
However, with village-y areas becoming an increasingly popular destination for all types of renters, everyone from single professionals to retirees has cast their eyes over the BR2 postcode. In our latest London guide, we're looking at why you should think about making the move to Keston.
On a map
Keston is a village in Greater London, on the outskirt of the south-east of the capital. It falls under the London Borough of Bromley and sits on the Kent border, to the point where many consider it as part of Kent. Neighbouring areas include Chelsfield, Bromley and Orpington.
History of Keston
You can trace life in Keston all the way back to 3,000 B.C., with flint implements and pitt dwellings found in the area that represent life from a very long time ago. A valley below the village also has the ruins of a complex of 3rd century AD Roman tombs.
William Wilberforce, a leader of the movement to abolish the slave trade, was a frequent visitor to Keston. He even discussed the abolition of slavery while visiting a friend in the area.
Fast-forward to the 20th century, and the Keston Institute (an organisation dedicated to the study of religion and communist countries at Oxford) was named after its original location at Keston College.
Who lives in Keston?
Keston has a population just shy of 9,000, and the median age is 44. Renting isn't as popular in the village as nearby areas like Bromley, but 34% of people still rent their home in Keston.
Renting in Keston
There is a range of property types in Keston, including a large private-gated area with Twenties and Thirties houses in Keston Park. Many of the properties are grand, though there are more modest houses and a sprinkling of new builds.
Highlights include a manor building on Westerham Road, which has been converted into modern apartments. The overall average rental price in Keston is around £2,000 per month.
There is no train station in Keston, though nearby Hayes (one mile away) serves the village well. The station has direct services to Charing Cross, London Bridge and Waterloo. Keston is also served by several local buses.
The Fox Inn
There are a fair few pubs in Keston, and the Fox Inn is up there with the best of them. Enjoy classic pub grub and a few drinks, either inside or out on the lounge terrace during the warmer months.
The Greyhound Keston
The Greyhound Keston sits on the edge of a scenic green and is a country pub for all seasons. Chow down on classics by the log fire during the colder months, or sip back on an ale or two on the green when the sun's out.
Indulge in a range of dining options at Harpers, a Keston hotspot that's popular with the locals and serves everything from burgers to pasta. There's even a DIY burger kit on the website, just in case you want to make your own pattie – though nothing beats the real thing.
Things to do in Keston
Set in a WWII RAF operations room, Operation Escape is an interactive game for groups of two to six people. Test your wit and see if you can escape as you solve a series of puzzles and clues.
Get back to nature and go for a scenic stroll around Keston Common. The 135-acre park is a biological Site of Special Scientific Interest and features lush greens, tranquil lakes and woodland to discover.
Tim Akers Antiques
Find a gem or two for your new home at Tim Akers Antiques, a little independent antique store in the heart of the village. Tim Akers Antiques even has a claim to fame after featuring on the BBC Restoration Roadshow.
Moving to Keston
Keston is a far cry from the usual busy energy found in London postcodes. But sometimes it's nice to calm things down a bit and enjoy a slower pace of life. And with Waterloo, London Bridge and Charing Cross less than an hour away, you can jump back into the hustle and bustle of the capital whenever it suits you.