Tonbridge's history goes back a long way. People in the Iron Age used the river crossing here, as the Romans must have done later. A Saxon settlement may have grown up beside the river, before the Normans came and built the motte-and-bailey castle. Its massive gatehouse is now one of the finest surviving in the country.
Tonbridge Historical Society brings together people with interests in all aspects of the subject, for talks and other activities. New members are always welcome. You can find out more here.
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Careers Mentoring SchemeCareers advice, guidance and work experience from OTs, parents and friends.
In 2014 the Angel Community Garden was created to eliminate eyesores in the area, and encourage bees which are declining. The garden has put along the edge of Sainsburys car park. It was formed in collaboration with Tonbridge Friends of the Earth and Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council. The project also received some support from some local shopkeepers and residents, some being members of the West Kent Green Party.
Recre8Offering term time/holiday courses and parties for children.
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The town was recorded in the Domesday Book 1087 as Tonebrige, which may indicate a bridge belonging to the estate or manor (from the Old English tun), or alternatively a bridge belonging to Tunna, a common Anglo-Saxon man's name. Another theory suggests that the name is a contraction of "town of bridges", due to the large number of streams the High Street originally crossed.
Members' Leisure ClubOffering the very best in sports and leisure facilities.
Box OfficeBuy tickets for the E M Forster Theatre and the Tonbridge Arts Programme.
Dualing of the A21 from Castle Hill to Pembury, where a new regional hospital opened in 2011, has commenced and works are set for completion in 2017.
The castle and five branches of the Medway appeared on Tonbridge's coat of arms, pre-1974. See here for details.
The Köppen Climate Classification subtype for this climate is "Cfb" (Marine West Coast Climate).
From the castle, take the cycle route 5 miles west through tranquil woodland and countryside to Penshurst Place, a fortified manor house that’s rich with medieval and Tudor charm. The gardens overflow with fragrance and blooms, while neighbouring Penshurst village is quintessential, historic Kent.
Use the links on the left to find out more about the history of our town, or browse our extensive pictorial collection. For those who want to go deeper, the Links section should help to get you started.
In 1999, Harvester Trust Tonbridge bought a derelict site on Medway Wharf Road, in the centre of Tonbridge. A £4 million building which can be used as a church, community centre and conference centre was given planning permission in March 2000. Work began in 2001. The River Centre was officially opened in January 2003, and hosts a wide variety of events from product launches to awards ceremonies, as well as international church conferences.
First Floor, Block A, Avebury Avenue, Tonbridge, Kent, TN9 1TG, T: +44 (0)1732 352316
To make Tonbridge cleaner and safer, a Pedestrian Action group called PATHS was set up to turn Tonbridge High Street into a pedestrianised street. In 2014, the High Street is a throughway for numerous HGVS and heavy commuter traffic.
Royal Mail's TN postcode main sorting office is located on Vale Road in the town.
Old Tonbridgian SocietyThe network for Old Tonbridgians.
Tourist Information Centre, Castle Street, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1BG Tel: 01732 770929 Email: Tonbridge.firstname.lastname@example.org
Tonbridge Baseball Club play in the town, after forming an adult team in 2000 from the junior team the Bobcats. The Bobcats were coached for many by Tonbridge Baseball Club's president Margaret Borley MBE.
Tonbridge Athletic Club which trains on the Tonbridge school track, is Kelly Holmes' former club. The Tonbridge Half Marathon has been held in September since 2011.
An 800 acre site set in an area of outstanding natural beauty – perfect for fishing, cycling and boating or simply soaking up the pretty view.
Joint highest A level score nationally
Tonbridge has a Rugby union club, Tonbridge Juddians Rugby Football club., often referred to as TJs. The 2009/10 season saw the club's first XV win promotion and go unbeaten in the league for the second year running, they played their rugby in 2010/11 in London 1. The senior men's section of the club fields five sides plus a Vets team. The club has two girls teams (Under 15 and 18), and a junior and mini section.
During Queen Mary's reign Tonbridge was involved in an unsuccessful uprising against the Queen's marriage to the King of Spain, with 500 townspeople involved in the Battle of Hartley in 1554. As a result, the town was chosen for a place of execution of a number of Protestants; and in 1555 James Tutty and Margery Polley were burned at the stake in the town and Joan Beach met the same fate in 1556 at Rochester. A memorial to Margery Polly is on the green at Pembury.
Head to the Hythe Imperial on 8th October for an unmissable tribute of the coolest cats of all time ruling the Las Vegas & Hollywood during the 50's and 60's.
Major industries include light engineering, printing and publishing, distribution and financial services. Tonbridge, together with its neighbour Tunbridge Wells, has been designated by the South East Assembly as a Regional Hub.
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Tonbridge has many primary schools including Hilden Grange School, Slade Primary School, Sussex Road County Primary School, Long Mead Community Primary School, Cage Green Primary School, Woodlands Junior and Infant Schools, St Stephens Primary School and St Margaret Clitherow R C Primary School. There are more in the surrounding area.
Until 1870, the town's name was spelt Tunbridge, as shown on old maps including the 1871 Ordnance Survey map and contemporary issues of the Bradshaw railway guide. In 1870, this was changed to Tonbridge by the GPO due to confusion with nearby Tunbridge Wells, despite Tonbridge being a much older settlement. Tunbridge Wells has always maintained the same spelling.
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Tonbridge DevelopmentSupporting the School’s aim to provide a world-class educational environment.
Enjoy sixteen days of art, literature, music and film curated in response to the spectacular Thames Estuary in Gravesend.
Perfect as a touring base or a day trip destination, visit our dedicated website for endless possibilities for groups in Kent
Event HireOur extensive facilities are available for hire.
. . . a town on the River Medway in the English county of Kent — and welcome to the website of Tonbridge Historical Society.
The town was besieged by William Rufus, soon after his accession to the throne, because the Earl had pledged allegiance to William's brother, Robert. It is thus hardly surprising that the arrow that killed William Rufus a few years later in the New Forest was fired by Walter Tirel who was born in town as well as the Earl's in-law.
The school aims to provide a caring and enlightened environment in which the talents of each individual flourish. We encourage boys to be creative, tolerant and to strive for academic, sporting and cultural excellence. Respect for tradition and an openness to innovation are equally valued.