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The local area guide to living in Betchworth

Betchworth, with a population of just over 1000, is a village and civil parish in Surrey, South East England. It sits within the affluent Mole Valley district of the county, with the centre of the village on the River Mole's north bank.

The village seems to have bronze age origins, but curiously shows no sign of Roman occupation. It was recorded in the Domesday Book as Becesworde, recorded to have owed taxes totaling £7 10s. The village contained three manors through the middle ages, of which two are still within today's boundaries - Wonham and Betchworth. Nearby Brockham was taken over by another village.

Just a few miles from the centre of the village is Betchworth Castle, a ruined medieval fortification. It underwent some repair work in the 18th century but is now mostly crumbled - still, it provides an eerie, fascinating glimpse into the past for visitors.

Beside the village green is the beautiful St Michael's Church, which is Grade I listed. It dates back to the early years of the 13th century, when it was built over an existing Saxon church. Famously, it featured in the 1994 romantic comedy 'Four Weddings and a Funeral'. Also within the bounds of the village is Betchworth House, a 17th century manor house which is the largest building in the village.

Information about the local residents

The local economy is service sector-based, although there are a large number of commuters within the village thanks to its excellent location just 20 miles from London. Key employers are the Hartsfield Manor Hotel, and Betchworth Park Golf Club. Agriculture is also important, especially crops, chickens and pastures.

While social grades are not always a good way of telling much about a place, they tell a story about the Mole Valley. Just under 70% of the people that live there belong to the ABC1 social grades, meaning the main earner in the household works in a Higher or Intermediate administrative, managerial or professional job role. 75% of all people in the Mole Valley own their own home.

The unemployment rate is very, very low at 1.2% - a third of what it is for the rest of England, and this may owe to the high levels of education in the area. Over 40% of the residents have been educated to university level or beyond, and only 16% have no qualifications.

The mean age for the area is 42.7, a few years over the average for England, and there is a relatively large retired population. However, general rates of health are extraordinarily high - very nearly 85% of people report their health as 'very good' or 'good'. Only around 3% would say it is less than 'fair'.

Nearby schools

The nearest institution is North Downs Primary School, which is spread across three separate sites - Betchworth, Brockham, and Leigh. It is a school that does its best to make sure children feel happy, stimulated and safe, and believes that those are the things most necessary to ensure success. Ofsted remarked at the last inspection that the school has particularly good, and consistent, standards of teaching.

For older children, there are plenty of schools nearby in Leatherhead and elsewhere with good reputations.

Getting around

Betchworth has a railway station, on the North Downs Line, that gets two trains per hour between Reading and Gatwick Airport. It's very easy to get to London by changing at Reigate just a few miles away.

Just north of the village is the A25 road, which runs from Kent to Guildford. It provides quick, easy links via a roundabout to London, the M25, Leatherhead and elsewhere.

Local shops

The village is supplied with a Post Office/shop, pub, hotel and a few specialist shops.

For larger shopping trips, Leatherhead is good, and only a handful of miles to the north-west, while Guildford is 20 miles in the other direction and has excellent high street brands to go along with its great selection of independent stores.

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Whilst every effort has been taken to ensure the above information is up to date, some inaccuracies may occur. If you notice any inaccuracies please contact editor@zoopla.co.uk

All information was correct at time of publication and is provided in good faith.

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