Royal Tunbridge Wells
Royal Tunbridge Wells, England
Royal Tunbridge Wells Reviews
Charming Kent Town Apr 21, 2014
'Royal' Tunbridge Wells has become something of a byword for Conservative, reactionary, quintessentially English Middle Classdom among British folk. This is because of a notorious series of letters sent to the Times newspaper in the early 20th Century. The writer of said letters was anonymous, only signing themselves off as 'Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells'.
This, combined with its 'royal' status, has given the town something of an unfortunate reputation for snobbery. It certainly doesn't help that, back in the day, the historic town centre of the Pantiles was split in to a two tiered system, with the plebs not allowed to work on the upper-walkway that was specially reserved for the town's more affluent residents and visitors.
Thankfully, this is no longer the case, and whilst the town has an undeniably upmarket vibe and will always struggle to shake off its 'Middle England' tag, there are some things worth seeing for the visitor. The historic pantiles is a pleasant place: it is still possible to drink 'of the water' there, and the specialist independent shops, galleries and restaurants that line the pantiles give it a unique, quirky feel.
The modern day town centre is less distinctive, but just up the hill from the Pantiles is Tunbridge Wells common, a pleasant enough place to take a stroll with a fun rock formation - which you can clamber over - the centrepiece attraction.
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