The Surrey town of Guildford, with its Saxon origins, is less than 30 miles from London. The town's main rail link runs from Waterloo Station in London through to Portsmouth and there is a comprehensive train timetable to various long-distance destinations.
Home to well-known writers and poets, such as Lewis Carroll, Gerald Seymour and Edward Carpenter, it is no wonder Guildford has a rich cultural history. The Electric Theatre presents theatre-goers with a busy programme of shows throughout the year and the 17th century Guildford House Gallery is worthy of a visit. Construction of Guildford Castle was started in 1066 and despite having fallen into a ruins, Guildford Borough Council purchased the property in 1885 and transformed the grounds into beautiful parkland.
Guilford Lido, Ash Manor Sports Centre, Guildford Cricket Club and the Guildford Spectrum Leisure Complex all offer visitors and residents alike many fun-filled, energising activities; the latter featuring creche facilities, ten-pin bowling and ice-skating. Stoke Park is the dedicated venue for the summertime Guilfest (music festival) and the annual Surrey County Show in May.
The waterways, which were constructed many years ago, gave Guildford access to the Thames at Weybridge and commerce and industry have remained integral to the modern-day town. Brewing has played a major part in Guildford's industry in the past, as has natural mineral mining, but it was really the advent of the railway line that put this Victorian town on the commercial map. Coachbuilders, major electronic industries and just about everything in between, such as Greyfriars' Vineyard, on the slopes of Hogs Back Ridge, all contribute to the innovative hustle and bustle of Guildford.