Robertsbridge is a village (pop. roughly 2,500) in the county of East Sussex, England. Dating from the 10th century a.d. it is a quaint place with relatively little to see, but due to its location on the main railway line from London to Hastings and the corresponding main road (A21), it represents a good potential base to discover the picturesque local countryside, sights, towns and villages nearby. These include (in order of proximity); Bodiam Castle, Brightling, Battle, Hastings, Tunbridge Wells and Rye.
There are a handful of Inns and Bed & Breakfast's in the village, offering mid-range homely accommodation. The Seven Stars Inn is said to be one of the most haunted pubs in Britain.
Robertsbridge hosts a few unique features; The "Bruderhof", a faith community living in a self sufficient commune at the edge of the village. They wear traditional late 19th century style work garb and can often be seen on walks around the village and surrounding countryside. They are very friendly and welcoming people, and a number of public footpaths run through their land. They also produce and sell wooden carved toys and furniture.
The famous cricket brand Gray Nicolls (the Nicolls part) was founded in Robertsbridge, and operates from its original location on station road to this day, making (among other things) handmade cricket bats.
Also the Kent and East Sussex railway finds its most westerly extension at Robertsbridge station. This Steam locomotive company operates between Tenterden and Bodiam, and the line is awaiting connection to the existent line at Robertsbridge, over the A21 main road. As of 2012, enough funding has become available to do so and the focus has shifted onto receiving planning permission. A small collection of Steam trains and carriages are kept at Robertsbridge station and operated occasionally on the short track up to the the A21.
The nearest major airport is London Gatwick, roughly an hour and a half away by road or rail. The Port of Dover is at a similar distance, and the Eurotunnel is roughly an hour by road.
The Main Road (A21) running north to south between London (M25) and Hastings runs parallel to the village. It takes roughly an hour and a half to get into central London by car from Robertsbridge, traffic permitting. Hastings is about 20 minutes away in the opposite (southerly) direction.
Robertsbridge train station is frequented by twice hourly services in both directions. To Hastings via Battle, Crowhurst, West St. Leonards and St. Leonards Warrior Square takes about 30 minutes. To London Charing Cross via Etchingham, Stonegate, Wadhurst, Frant, Tunbridge Wells, High Brooms, Tonbridge, Sevenoaks, Orpington and London bridge takes a little more than an hour.
Rural bus services connect the village directly with other local settlements and the closest towns. However, due to its location on the main railway line, it is advisable to travel by train if your destination is Hastings, Battle or Tunbridge Wells as this is much quicker and more direct. Buses to nearby Bodiam and Hawkhurst, or after changing at Hawkhurst further into Kent to places like Tenterden, Cranbrook and Rye, can be caught from the bus stops on the small high street. (Timetables vary, and are displayed at the bus stops)
Robertsbridge is a great place for country walks, offering many public footpaths and bridleways in the immediate surrounding countryside. Walking is the best way to get around the village itself as well, its size easily permitting this.
Bonfire night, Held annually around the 5th of November, this celebration attracts people from miles around and is by far the biggest event of the year for the village. A large parade is held in carnival atmosphere, usually starting from the station and proceeding towards the recreational ground via the high street. A huge bonfire is lit, complete with Guy Fawkes' effigy, and the night culminates in a great fireworks display that goes well beyond its rural setting in terms of significance and spectacle. The event is free, with a street collection on the evening to help raise money for charity.
The village only offers local amenities. Two small convenience stores, a local chemist, baker, florist and hair-dresser.
Apart from its 3 pubs offering hearty traditional meals, Robertsbridge also has a good Indian Restaurant: New Spice 13 High St, Robertsbridge, TN32 5AE