UDG Study Trip to Tunbridge Wells

Saturday 4 December 2021 - 11:15 to 16:30
meet Tunbridge Wells Station


An opportunity to look at and discuss with friends and colleagues the fashionable, refined and very proper Royal Tunbridge Wells

...and go Christmas shopping too!

Established as a spa resort for royalty and nobility, the town began to develop from the late 17th century, in response to the apparent health giving properties of the waters. It was at this time, when fancy clothes, 'walks' and promenading were becoming fashionable that Tunbridge Wells’ famous 'Pantiles', a promenade flanked by shops, was carefully planned and built.

Much has happened since:

  • Gentle density 18th and 19th century style with examples of vernacular and polite architecture, including Decimus Burton, and varying degrees of formal and informal urban design
  • Steam railway now preserved, but not before an edge of centre supermarket was built across the line heading to London, isolating the track
  • A Civic Centre complex opened in 1939/40 comprising Library, museum, theatre and civic offices, designed by architect Percy Thomas
  • Public realm schemes - the town is noted for its Wealden brick pavements.
  • Repurposed churches
  • Several major town centre redevelopment sites including a former cinema and shop complex built in the early 1930s

There is much to learn from the town including the impact of changes in movement patterns and costs, fashion, social change, and changes in retail economics.

Led by experts from Tunbridge Wells Borough Council and local UDG members.


All welcome, Regency dress optional!

Meet outside Tunbridge Wells station 11.15 am. Trains from London run half hourly from Charing Cross, Waterloo East, and London Bridge.