Two villages in West Sussex have been selected for our list of the best places to live near London for commuters.
Commute: Haywards Heath (London Victoria, 44 minutes). Drive to station: about 5 minutes. Frequency of trains: 10 per hour (peak). First train in: 4.34am; last train home: 1am. Annual season ticket: £3,844. Annual car-park ticket: £1,166.
The Country Life verdict: Pevsner described Lindfield as having the ‘finest village street in East Sussex’ (the county boundaries were later redrawn). It’s won the best-kept village in Sussex title so often, it was once withdrawn to give others a chance.
Best address: Rupert Coles of Prime Purchase says the very attractive house overlooking the duck pond has to be the highlight on Lindfield’s high street.
Alternatives: Haywards Heath, Ardingly, Horsted Keynes, Scaynes Hill.
Commute: Haslemere station (London Waterloo, 52 minutes). Drive to station: about 15 minutes. Frequency of trains: 3 per hour (peak). First train in: 5.26am; last train home: 11.45pm. Annual season ticket: £3,900. Annual car-park ticket: £1,050.
The Country Life verdict: Typically English village set in the South Downs with an active cricket club, one of the best pubs in the area (The Noah’s Ark), an excellent village shop-which sells fresh bread and local produce – and even a winery. It’s a bit of a drive to the station, but worth it.
Best address: ‘The Old Rectory is very sweet, but, from The Malthouse, you could sit in the front garden and watch the cricket matches,’ says Russell Grieve of Knight Frank, Haslemere.
Alternative: Lodsworth (an Archers-esque village in which the shop-the Lodsworth Larder-was started by villagers and sells produce from the nearby Cowdray estate.
** Read our selection of the best places to live near London by county