Thames Towns

Kingston upon Thames

Kingston is a major ancient market town, situated on the banks of the River Thames for almost three miles, in the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames. The town was built at the first crossing point of the River after London Bridge, where the Clattern Bridge still exists today. The ancient marketplace is still home to a lively, daily market where shoppers can buy fresh fruit and vegetables, fish, flowers and jewellery.

The town centre is full of things to do; it is a retail hub, with a great mixture of shops as it has both large chains and independent boutiques. There are also lots of pubs and restaurants both on the riverside as well as in the middle of town. After a bite to eat or some shopping, you can always head down to Turks Pier jump on one of Turks daily cruises, which go to either Hampton Court or Richmond. If you prefer dry land, then you can take a leisurely stroll along the Thames Path instead.

Situated a stone’s throw away from the centre of town is Kingston University. Not only is it a major employer but, it adds to the lively atmosphere that you can find, as Kingston is always buzzing with people during the day and night.

There are several important landmarks in Kingston including the famous Kingston Bridge, which was designed by Edward Lapidge in 1825 and opened 3 years later. Today, it has traffic of about 50,000 vehicles passing over it every day. The Rose Theatre opened in 2008 and can seat 900 people. It hosts a variety of shows throughout the year and is considered a centre for the entire community. It is also where the university holds its graduations. Kingston Museum, another landmark, was built in 1904 and comprises of a Museum, History Room and Archives Room. Sadly though, it only opens on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday because of the cuts (discussed in a feature on museums…'Museum Features') .

Finally, one of the very unusual landmarks is the sculpture called 'Out of Order', a line of several disused red telephones boxes, built by David Mach in 1988.

Restaurants:

Little Italy
Riverside Vegetaria
La Tasca
Le Comptoir Linanais

Pubs:

The Ram
The Druid's Head
Bishop Out of Residence

 Boat Trips:

 
Turk Launches
 

Boats for sale:

Bates Wharf Brokers

 

With good links on the over ground main-line and buses, Kingston is only half an hour from Waterloo station and well worth a visit.


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