The historic town of Crawley in Sussex, lying just to the south of London’s Gatwick Airport, was one of the first ‘new towns’ built after World War II. Now, it is a pleasant place to stay in order to avoid the chaos of London before or after your flight. Crawley’s High Street offers a glimpse back in time to the ‘old’ town with its interesting old buildings still in use, many with their exteriors preserved.
Crawley also has many points of interest to visit. The Crawley Museum Centre displays a variety of collections, including archaeology, costume and textiles, archives, science and technology, and social history. At the north end of High Street is the ‘Tree House,’ known locally as ‘The Tree,’ which was a residence back in the 14th century.
The High Street is a Mecca for fine restaurants and pubs, while many of the local hotels have fitness facilities for both the guests and local members. The Memorial Garden, which is the Centre of town, offers a quiet haven to relax and rest the aching feet.
Daytrips outside of the town are also worthwhile to discover the surrounding countryside. Fishbourne Roman Palace, which was discovered by accident during the digging of a water main trench in 1960, had developed from a military base at the end of the Roman invasion in 43AD to a sumptuous palace by the end of the first century. Visit the charming Brighton Museum and Art Gallery, or take a stroll through Tilgate Park, which has more than 400 acres of landscaped gardens, woodlands and lakes.
London’s Gatwick Airport is within the town boundary, while Crawley is very close to the southern section of the M25 ring road. The M23 is a major motorway linking the city to London central. Trains depart several times an hour from London Bridge station and London Victoria station.