Original article from Kent Live
The wealthy elite of London, Hong Kong and the US are all targeting property in Tunbridge Wells, according to the Financial Times.
The paper recently published a major feature on the west Kent town titled "Delighted of Tunbridge Wells".
They contrasted it with the better known and "well-worn" phrase "Disgusted of Tunbridge Wells", something they said referred "to a person who writes letters to newspapers with righteous indignation".
But the focus of the article was the area's booming property market.
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House prices have risen over 52% in the last decade, so that they are now a full third higher than the Kent average.
But it's during the pandemic that things have really ratcheted up, according to the FT.
They said the 2,801 sales in 2020 represented the highest number in five years.
Sales agreed by Hamptons in the first quarter of 2021 are up 146% on the year before.
One local estate agent at Knight Frank said they had recently agreed sales with four people from Hong Kong and three from the US.
The Financial Times points first to the town itself, with its independent shops like the Pantiles.
The FT describes it as "an elegant colonnaded walkway that's also home to cafes, bars and alfresco jazz gigs in the summer".
Then there's the schools, which is why "… many families move from Sussex and Surrey to be in the catchment area for the grammars".
And finally there is the great demand triggered by the pandemic: outside space.
According to the FT just 17% of sales were flats in 2020, the lowest level since 1999.
Proportions in Tunbridge Wells are the exact opposite, some 71.8% of all property in the district being houses.
For all of these reasons, according to Alexandra Goss, Londoners and other wealthy people are flocking there or at least trying to.
Anyone who owns a property there is therefore likely to be the "Delighted of Tunbridge Wells" for now.