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Top places to live in Sussex Wadhurst

Live the cottage dream in this affluent market town on the borders of Kent and East Sussex. It's not cheap, but you get what you pay for. Part of our Top 200 Places to Live series.

Snape Wood, Wadhurst
Snape Wood, Wadhurst. Image by Brian Toward

WHY?

This small market town on the Kent/Sussex border, just seven miles from Tunbridge Wells falls into the High Weald AONB. Characterful and commuter-friendly, it’s close to the coast (40 minutes to Hastings, 45 to the legendary Camber Sands) and has a lovely mix of the old and the new lining its high street.

EAT

The Curlew at Bodiam is well worth the 20-minute drive, for laid-back social dining and an unbeatably warm atmosphere from chef-to-watch Will Devlin. Or opt for gorgeous gastro at The Bell at Ticehurst or The Lazy Fox in nearby Mark Cross which has jaw-dropping views.

SHOP

Indie bookshop Barnetts is of the kind that’s hard to find in an age of Amazon and Waterstones. Natural health aficionados will adore Hamblys, and the Wadhurst Beauty Bar offers the full range of treatments including pain-free waxing. Yes really!

NEARBY ATTRACTIONS

A stone’s throw (OK, a couple of miles) away is Bewl Water, a sprawling family-friendly country park for adventures on and off the lake. National Trust properties Bodiam Castle and Bateman’s are also within a few miles.

AVERAGE HOUSE PRICE

£619,796. Detached are most expensive at £806,624, floored by semi-detached at £520,567, then terraced at £386,033. Wadhurst and nearby Mayfield come under the domain of Burnett’s, also worth checking out are the fantastically named indie Green Lizard.

SCHOOLS

Catholic prep Sacred Heart is a hidden gem, with just 120 pupils aged 2 to 11, the small class size dream. Vinehall in Robertsbridge offers day and boarding. Skippers Hill Manor is a non-selective day school for girls and boys aged 2 to 13. Top girls boarding school Mayfield is very close. Across the border into Kent is Beechwood Sacred Heart, a Catholic boarding school, and Tunbridge Wells Grammars for boys and girls.

BEST KEPT SECRET

When TV presenter and fitness queen Davina McCall flogged her Wadhurst mansion for a cool £6m a few years ago, social media was (wrongly) convinced Johnny Depp was the buyer!

COMMUTE

You can be at London’s Charing Cross within the hour, and it’ll cost you £5,372 a year.

View the full Top 200 Places to Live

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