Although only a few minutes drive away from the M25, Sevenoaks has retained its charm and continues to provide a pleasant environment in which to live and work.
With its attractive mix of unique Kentish architecture housing many interesting speciality shops, it has become an increasingly popular venue for visitors.
Surrounded by green countryside and yet only 35 minutes train journey from London, and similar distances from Gatwick Airport and the Channel Tunnel, Sevenoaks offers its residents many advantages.
Having recovered from the great storm of 1987 much planting and regrowth has taken place, however one unexpected outcome has become somethng of a tourist attraction - the vine cricket ground now home to only one surviving Oak tree from the original seven which were planted to commemorate the coronation of King Edward VII in 1902.
There are three supermarkets in the town centre and an array of small shops in the centre, in St John's Hill and Tubs Hill. The Blighs Development provides a mix of quality specialist shops as well as national retailers, with pubs and restaurants. A popular weekly market takes place every Wednesday in the town centre.
Some scenes from the Blighs development
Sports, Activities and Clubs
Sevenoaks has a lively local community with clubs and organisations to cater for almost every interest. Sports enthusiasts are provided with a sports centre, indoor and outdoor bowls, several football and rugby pitches, tennis courts (including covered courts) and Raleys Gym offering a wide range of activities for ladies and children, and of course cricket.
The Vine Cricket Ground with its delightful adjacent gardens, has been the venue for cricket matches for over 250 years, making it one of the oldest in the country.
The centre of Sevenoaks is home to the swimming pool and fitness suite which has recently undergone extensive refurbishment and upgraded to include a multi-purpose sports centre.
Some views of the updated sports centre
With its pleasant and rural surroundings, walking is a very popular pastime in Sevenoaks
and well-marked footpaths abound. Three long distance paths cross through or near Sevenoaks - the North Downs Way
being the most famous with walkers from all over the country coming to follow its 246 km long route.
Circular walks around the outskirts of the town have been way-marked with accompanying maps to follow the routes. Details of all walks and footpath maps are available from the Tourist Information Centre
Recreation and Play Areas
There is a pleasant environmental park close to the swimming pool, created from overgrown abandoned allotments in 1994. The area has been replanted with trees and wild flowers to attrace birds and butterflies. It offers a restful place to sit and walk and also provides a play area for children.
A longer-established wildlife area is the Sevenoaks Wildfowl Reserve off Bradbourne Vale Road (A25). This was developed from a worked-out gravel pit for the purpose of nature conservation and provides a home for a variety of wildfowl, plants, insects and woodland birds. There is also a nature trail and hide and a visitor centre, often host to art exhibitions.
Bradbourne Lakes on the opposite side of the road offer a quiet area for walks and a chance to feed the ducks and geese. Two children's play areas are nearby in Pontoise Close.
Hollybush Recreation Ground, a short walk from the town centre has a children's play area, public tennis courts, an all-weather pitch, football ground and indoor and outdoor bowls.
Sevenoaks has a very good modern library with a wide choice of books for adults and children. The library also houses a local archives section, museum and art gallery with exhibitions changing monthly.
Within the library building there is the Citizen's Advice Bureau and The Tourist Information Centre. Information on all local activities, places to visit, events, local and London theatres etc can be obtained here.
The Stag Theatre
The Stag Theatre provides a base for local dramatic, operatic and musical groups, as well as many visiting groups and artists of international fame. There are also two cinemas, the Footlights Restaurant and The Plaza Suite - a venue for meetings, conferences and private functions.
To the north of the Seal Road in Sevenoaks lies Greatness Park Cemetery, opened in 1906. The land slopes steeply towards the north and at its highest point visitors can admire spectacular views over the North Downs.
Within the Cemetery is a small chapel, the Cemetery lodge and also a listed building - the Kraftmeier Mausoleum (left). This has been recognised as having significant architectural merit and is now protected.
Sevenoaks Town Council Offices n Bradbourne Vale Road n Sevenoaks n Kent n TN13 3QG