Facts about Horley
Horley is a town in the borough of Reigate and Banstead in Surrey, England south of the towns of Reigate and Redhill. The county border with West Sussex is to the south with Crawley and Gatwick Airport close to the town. With fast links by train throughout the day to London from Horley railway station, it qualifies as a commuter town and has a significant economy of its own, including business parks and a relatively long high street.
In the past the Weald was a densely forested and marshy area. During Saxon times, the Manor of Horley came under the control of the Benedictine Abbey of St Peter at Chertsey. In the Domesday Book of 1086, the Manor was within the hundred known as Cherchefelle which in 1199 became known as Reigate. The Manor passed to Henry VIII on the dissolution of the monasteries in 1539 and changed hands several times during the next sixty years.
About 1 mile (1.6 km) to the east is the overgrown but well-preserved site of Thunderfield Castle, a twelfth-century ring and bailey castle. In 1602 it became the property of Christ’s Hospital in London and the original map of the manor is now held at the Guildhall in the City of London. This shows that Horley consisted of three hamlets around a huge open common. One was around the area occupied by St Bartholomew’s Church and the Six Bells public house; another by the River Mole and the third in Horley Row where some of Horley’s oldest buildings can still be seen.