Welcome to Higham
Our area guide for Higham offers a brief overview of the town and its attractions, properties, schools, history, council tax and public transport links.
Higham Area Overview
Higham has a rich Dickensian history and offers residents a traditional English countryside setting. The village has developed as two parts over the years - the original Saxon village of Higham to the north and a more recent settlement to the south around the main road linking Gravesend to Rochester (the latter of which grew in size and importance during the 1800s). The two parts of Higham are often referred to as Lower Higham (referring to the original village) and Higham (referring to the newer village).
Higham (upper) is the larger of the areas and is home to the main parish church of St John's. There’s also a Post Office, a GP surgery, several pubs, convenience shops, a greengrocer, a fish and chip shop, a Chinese takeaway, a library and an Indian takeaway. Higham (lower) is the smaller of the two areas. It is the location of the original and now redundant St Mary's Church, a garage and Higham railway station.
The Larkin Memorial is a needle-stle monument raised in 1835 to the memory of Charles Larkin (1775–1833). Larkin was an auctioneer from nearby Rochester, who promoted the Parliamentary reforms of 1832 that gave the vote to every householder whose property rental value was more than £10. The ‘needle’ is at the highest spot at Higham and is the area’s most recognisable landmark. By 1860, this unusual monument was in danger of collapse but was repaired in 1869 and renovated again in 1974. Higham marshes are another outstanding attraction, deemed an important wetland habitat for many species of wildfowl, with dedicated walking trails across the marshes.
Higham Food and Drink
The Sir Jon Falstaff and Gardeners Arms are both pubs in the local area where you are guaranteed a warm welcome. The Knowle Country House restaurant near Gad’s Hill is worth booking for a special meal. For every day dining when you don’t want to cook, Higham residents can choose from Indian, Chinese and fish & chip takeaways, and there’s a brilliant local bakers too.
Gad's Hill in Higham was once notorious as a haunt of robbers, with a reputation so strong it prompted the creation of an ancient ballad entitled ‘The Robbers of Gad's Hill’. Gad’s Hill was so infamous it was also name-checked in William Shakespeare's play Henry IV, Part 1, as the place where Falstaff and his men organise a highway robbery. Gad's Hill Place was once the home of Charles Dickens, who bought it in 1856 for £1,790 and died there in 1870. In its garden stood a Swiss chalet in which Dickens would compose his works. The chalet is now in the gardens of Eastgate House, a Tudor building in Rochester, while the house itself is a private school.
Higham Property Market
Higham has grown in size over a number of years but it was originally a village full of modest dwellings. Higham now has a range of property types, from terraced houses to million pound properties, some set private roads with acres of land. Colewood Drive, Chalk Road and The Braes are all much requested addresses in Higham.
Higham Council Tax
Higham is in Gravesham Borough and the latest council tax charges can be found here:- http://www.gravesham.gov.uk/home/council-tax/bandings-and-what-to-pay/what-to-pay
The village of Higham and surrounding local villages have a selection of nurseries, pre-schools, private, comprehensive and grammar schools in the vicinity. These include:-
- Higham Primary School
- Shorne CofE Primary School
- Cliffe Woods Primary School
- Bligh Infant & Junior School
- Sir Joseph Williamson’s Mathematical School
- The Rochester Grammar School
- The Thomas Aveling
- Gad’s Hill (Independent School)
- Kings School (Independent School)
- St Andrews (Independent School)
Higham Transport Links
Over the last few years a vast amount of money has been spent developing/improving roads and transport links in and around the area. Higham is two stops from Ebbsfleet International train station, so travellers using Higham station benefits from a super fast journey of just 20 minutes into London St Pancras and also out into mainland Europe via the Eurostar, with Paris as little as two hours away. There are bus routes to Bluewater and major towns in Kent like Dartford and Rochester departing Higham on a regular basis. The A2 arterial road passes through Higham and offers a direct road route into Central London or out Canterbury and the M25.