Leigh, Surrey

Leigh /ˈl/ is a village and civil parish in Surrey, between Reigate, Dorking and Charlwood in the east of Mole Valley district. The village centre is suburban and its remainder is agricultural, interspersed by four satellite clustered localities: Dawesgreen, Bunce Common, Shellwood Cross and Nalderswood which benefit from the amenities of the village and a minority of the remainder is woodland.


The defunct, traditional village water pump above a well

Village green with some homes and one of the two pubs of Leigh in the background.
Location within Surrey
Area13.82 km2 (5.34 sq mi)
Population943 (Civil Parish 2011)[1]
 Density68/km2 (180/sq mi)
OS grid referenceTQ217471
Shire county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Post townReigate
Postcode districtRH2
Dialling code01306
AmbulanceSouth East Coast
EU ParliamentSouth East England
UK Parliament


A hoard of 62 Roman silver denarii was discovered in a field at Swains Farm in 2004. The oldest of the coins dates from 31 BC and the youngest were minted in around 180 AD after the death of the emperor Marcus Aurelius.[2]

Before the Norman Conquest, and in dwindling use afterwards, the village lay within the Reigate hundred. Leigh appears to have been a centre for the Wealden iron industry,[3] and the village was explicitly exempted from a legal prohibition of making charcoal from certain timber types issued by Elizabeth I, so that iron smelting could continue.[4]


The Plough pub, one of two in the village (the other being The Seven Stars) is pictured above next to other homes and the village green. In the village is a church, St Bartholomew's, and the Leigh site for the North Downs Primary School, for school years one to three. The village has a large play area for younger children largely constructed of natural materials.


Each of the four communities surrounding the village is subsidiary to Leigh itself. Nalderswood however, including by road, is almost as close to Sidlow, which is a slightly smaller village with fewer amenities.


Separated from Leigh by a buffer of less than 200m to the south, Dawesgreen is a linear settlement on a built-up crossroads including one of the village pubs, and two other listed buildings

Bunce Common

Bunce Common is on the continuation of the road east from Dawesgreen. It is more dispersed, with plots of lower density, and has a road to Shellwood Cross.

Shellwood Cross

Shellwood Cross occupies the south-west corner of Leigh civil parish, on slopes by the upper part of the unnamed brook that flows past the east of the village centre and includes three listed buildings, one of which is a barn.


Nalderswood is by a little knoll known as the Mynthurst. The Deanoak Brook is a second tributary of the Mole, itself a tributary of the Thames, and is separated from the existing line of buildings forming most of Nalderswood by the Little Mynthurst rise.

Demography and housing

The United Kingdom Census 2011 shows an increase of more than 8% in population from 856, ten years previously. The proportion of households in Leigh who owned their home outright was within 4% of the borough and 12% above the national average. The proportion who owned their home with a loan was 1% greater than the national average; providing overall a higher proportion than average of rented residential property and of social housing than the national average, and above the average in Surrey.[1]

2011 Census Key Statistics
Output areaPopulationHouseholds% Owned outright% Owned with a loanhectares[1]
Leigh CP94337042.433.8[1]1382[1] United Kingdom Census 2011 Office for National Statistics</ref>

The proportion of households in the civil parish who owned their home outright compares to the regional average of 35.1%. The proportion who owned their home with a loan compares to the regional average of 32.5%. The remaining % is made up of rented dwellings (plus a large % of households living rent-free).

2011 Census Homes
Output areaDetachedSemi-detachedTerracedFlats and apartmentsCaravans/temporary/mobile homesshared between households[1]
(Civil Parish)202121232130

The average level of accommodation in the region composed of detached houses was 8%, the average that was apartments was 22.6%.

Local government

At Surrey County Council, one of the 81 representatives represents the area within the Dorking Rural division.[5]

At Mole Valley District Council most wards of the borough are deemed appropriate to be represented under the current constitution of councillors by one councillor, which is the case for Leigh.[6]

Mole Valley District Councillor
ElectionParty (if any)Member


2010[6] Iain MurdochLiberal DemocratsCapel, Leigh & Newdigate
2011[6] Corinna Osborne-PattersonConservative PartyCapel, Leigh & Newdigate
Surrey County Councillor
ElectionParty (if any)Member[7]

Electoral Division

2013 Helyn ClackConservative PartyDorking Rural

Notable residents


  1. Key Statistics; Quick Statistics: Population Density United Kingdom Census 2011 Office for National Statistics Retrieved 21 November 2013
  2. Williams D (2005). "A late 2nd century coin hoard from Leigh". Surrey Archaeological Collections. Surrey Archaeological Society. 92: 259–262.
  3. Giuseppi MS (1902). "The manor of Ewood and the ironworks there". Surrey Archaeological Collections. Surrey Archaeological Society. 17: 28–33.
  4. Malden HE, The Victoria County History (Surrey) (1911) vol. iii pp. 208–210 – available free online at http://www.british-history.org.uk by the University of Portsmouth and others
  5. Electoral Divisions Archived 2 December 2013 at the Wayback Machine Surrey County Council. Retrieved 6 November 2013
  6. Latest election results Mole Valley District Council. Retrieved 18 November 2013
  7. Your Councillor Surrey County Council. Retrieved 6 November 2013
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