If you’re searching for a home in a village location that has great amenities, a bustling community, and is within easy distance of Ashford town and its surrounding villages, Boughton Aluph and Eastwell could be the answer to your prayers.
This pretty village parish can be found in the Stour Valley, at the foot of the North Downs and is situated on the cusp of an Area of Outstanding Natural beauty.
The village is just five miles from the town of Ashford; home of the International Station, as well as excellent entertainment and leisure facilities, and just a stone’s throw away from the villages of Wye, Challock and Westwell and all that they have to offer. Boughton Aluph and Westwell is within easy access of the Ashford to Faversham road, Canterbury, Maidstone and the M20 – making it ideally situated for those who commute for work or school.
Boughton Aluph and Eastwell has a small yet active community, and the parish is incredibly proud of both its beauty and its history. The name Boughton Aluph comes from the Old English ‘boc’, which means ‘beech tree’, and ‘tun’, which means ‘enclosure’ or ‘farmstead’ – so Boughton Aluph is literally ‘farmstead where the beech tree grows’.
Eastwell takes its name from a spring known to the Saxon herdsmen of the Downs and forest area. The village’s history is littered with pilgrims and royalty, and the parish’s All Saints church, originally built by the Saxons and then rebuilt with stone in the 13th century, and then later restored by the Victorians in 1878, is a real feature of this stunning village. Today the church is still very much central to the community, having been the venue for the Stour Music Festival each June, and home of the Five Church Walk every May Bank Holiday, as well as the local nursery and playgroup.
Prospective buyers who love being outdoors and staying active, will be pleased to know that Boughton Aluph and Eastwell is a popular area for walkers and ramblers, horse riders and cyclists – in fact, the annual Wally Gimber cycle race passes through the village. The Pilgrims Way route cuts through the village, as does the North Downs Way, which is a well-known bridleway that runs from Ireland to France.
Cricket fans are in for a treat if they move to the village; Boughton Aluph and Eastwell’s cricket club is over 200 years old and offers a great summer’s evening’s entertainment on the village’s central green. You’ll also find the Sandyacres sports and social club here in what was Eastwell before the parishes’ amalgamation. The club is home to Ashford Running Club and hosts all manner of other local sporting events, including inter-village football events.
If you’re familiar with the area – in fact even if you aren’t – you’ve probably heard of Eastwell Manor, the luxury Champneys Hotel and a popular fairytale wedding venue, which houses an exclusive gym and spa that is open to hotel guests and members. Here you can enjoy a traditional afternoon tea, traditional English and French cuisine in their award-winning restaurant, as well as access to heated indoor swimming pools, a steam room, sauna and relaxation beds. The Eastwell estate on which the hotel is situated is open to visitors and is an historic 3,000 acre park that includes Eastwell lake, scenic nature trails and guided walks to enjoy, along with an all-weather tennis court, petanque court and croquet lawn.
Residents of Boughton Aluph and Eastwell are proud of the parish’s beauty; a fact reflected in its Gardening club, which is always open to new members. For those who are decidedly not green-fingered, the village has other clubs and societies on offer, including its Women’s Institute, Over 60’s Club, Carpet Bowls Club, and an art group.
If your passion is food and drink rather than anything too active, you’ll be delighted to discover The Flying Horse in Boughton Aluph and Eastwell – a typically charming English village pub that features low ceiling beams, open fires, and a cosy, family-friendly atmosphere. This 15th century former coaching inn, with its unusually shaped windows and beautiful stone arches overlooks the village green close to the Pilgrims Way. The old brewhouse has been converted into a restaurant and offers a variety of traditional home-cooked dishes and serves a variety of delicious ales.
Despite Boughton Aluph and Eastwell’s delightfully rural location, it still offers plenty in the way of amenities including shops and places to eat and drink, and if you’re thinking of moving here with children you’ll be pleased to know the village is home to Goat Lees Primary school. There are also plenty of other good primary schools (and secondary schools) in the surrounding areas, all within easy reach of the village, including Wye’s outstanding Lady Joanna Thornhil.
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