Why move to Haslemere?
This bustling town has a lively shopping and dining scene, and several localities each with their own unique appeal, including Grayswood, Shottermill, Shepherd’s Hill and Nutcombe. Its transport links make it a popular choice for commuters and those looking to escape the fast pace of London living, while families are attracted by the elegant period properties and range of amenities.
A little bit of history
The earliest record of Haslemere dates to the early 13th century and its quintessential wide high street speaks to a time when the cattle market was a major source of income. Victorian Haslemere became a desirable commuter town for London and one of its best-known residents in this period was Poet Laureate Alfred, Lord Tennyson, who lived at Aldworth House in his later years and died there in 1892.
Haslemere Educational Museum was established in 1888 by surgeon Sir Jonathan Hutchinson to provide a venue for locals to learn about natural history and offers many fascinating exhibits to this day.
Architecture and property
Haslemere is known for its pretty streets lined with characterful tile-hung and timber-framed buildings. Its properties run the gamut, particularly in the town centre which ranges from large, detached houses to one-bedroom apartments. The surrounding villages offer yet more diversity, with everything from barn conversions and period cottages to farmhouses and equestrian properties.
Shopping and amenities
Haslemere’s charming high street is home to various independent and specialist shops, as well as a Farmers’ Market on the first Sunday of every month that offers a delightful selection of fresh local produce. Traditional family-run shops such as Seabright’s butcher and fishmonger or R Miles & Son hardware store coexist with major supermarkets Waitrose, Tesco and M&S.
The Haslemere Leisure Centre has extensive facilities including a swimming pool, fitness centre, sports courts and children’s play area. The town has two cricket clubs, Haslemere and Grayswood, as well as Shottermill & Haslemere football club.
Dining options in Haslemere include an array of independent restaurants and rustic country pubs. The 19th century Swan Inn and Georgian pub The White Horse both serve hearty British dishes and face each other across the wide high street, where popular Italian chain restaurants Pizza Express and Ask also make an appearance. Quaint cafes Hemingways and Oliver’s, also a wine bar, are the perfect place for a hot drink after a long walk.
The Haslemere Hall concert venue has an excellent programme of theatre, live music and cinema screenings.
Occupying an idyllic spot between the South Downs National Park and the Surrey Hills Area of Natural Beauty, Haslemere has some of the UK’s most unspoilt countryside on the doorstep, including the Devil’s Punch Bowl. The Greensand Way footpath begins in the town and stretches over 100 miles to Hamstreet in Kent, taking in many lovely villages and Surrey Hills vistas along the way. The National Trust manages many local sites, such as the tranquil woodland of Swan Barn Farm moments from the high street and Black Down, the highest point in the South Downs. The Sculpture Park in nearby Churt is set in a 10-acre arboretum with pleasant walking trails and stunning artworks on display
Haslemere offers a great choice of state schools at all levels, including local comprehensive Woolmer Hill, St Bartholomews CofE Primary, Shottermill Junior, Camelsdale Primary School and Grayswood CofE Primary School. Additionally, the town is home to the highly regarded independent schools of St Ives and The Royal School, which also has boarding facilities.
Haslemere benefits from good transport links by road and rail, with regular train services to London Waterloo in under an hour. The A3 connects the town to Guildford in the north and Portsmouth in the south, while both Gatwick and Heathrow Airports are accessible by car in under an hour.