Haywards Heath medium sized commuter town in West Sussex. It's safe, pleasant and easy to get to and around. For an excellent view of middle class British life, visit Haywards Heath!
Haywards Heath station is on the mainline between London and Brighton. It's served by services run by Southern, Thameslink and Gatwick Express. Regular services run from London Victoria, London Bridge, and Bedford via London St. Pancras & Blackfriars. Journey times are around 15-20 minutes from Brighton, 45 minutes from London Bridge or Victoria, or 1 hour 5 mins from London St. Pancras. New Thameslink services now extend through to Cambridge and provide many additional services to and from London Bridge and other central London stations.
Please check National Rail Enquiries for up to date train times.
For more information on bus routes and schedules, please see here.
Haywards Heath is situated on the A272 and is a few miles off the A23 which links London to Brighton via Gatwick Airport.
Haywards Heath is 13 miles from London Gatwick Airport. The airport has a train station which is around a 15 minute train journey from Haywards Heath, and by car it takes around 25-30 minutes.
Haywards Heath is quite easy to get around, most things within the town being within walking distance of one another.
There are buses running around the town and to nearby destinations throughout the day, please check here for further info and schedules.
A taxi rank is positioned outside the station - queuing is rarely necessary.
There aren't any specific attractions to view in the town, but there are some nice places to visit such as the numerous parks and the town centre.
Muster Green is an interesting sight as it was the location of a skirmish where local Parliamentarians defeated the High Sheriff of Sussex during the Civil War in 1642. The town war memorial is also situated here.
There are a number of things to do in and around the town.
Clair Hall is an entertainment and events venue by the station, and has lots going on throughout the year.
The Dolphin Leisure Centre has a swimming pool, gym, squash courts and a sports hall with various activities available to do. It's open 7 days a week and is reasonably priced.
Take a walk into town! There are various shops, cafes, bars and restaurants in the town centre.
Walk round the parks! Haywards Heath has multiple parks, including Victoria Park in the town centre (which has a children's play park and a skate park), Clair Park near the station (which has a cricket pitch and is surrounded by woodland) and Beech Hurst Gardens.
Visit the nearby villages - Lindfield is around 15 minutes on the bus or a 30 minute walk from the station and has a charming high street, duck pond and village common, as well as numerous welcoming pubs.
The Bluebell Railway is a well known pleasure railway a few miles away from the town. The line runs between the Town of East Grinstead and Sheffield Park, and trains run every day of the year apart from Christmas day, stopping at various stations along the way. The whole line is beautifully kept including the stations which are maintained beautifully. It's definitely well worth a visit.
There is in fact a miniature railway in Beech Hurst Gardens - around 10 minute walk from the town centre. It's open during the summer months and has a track around 1/2 mile long, with rides costing £1 per person. Definitely worth a visit.
The town centre features an array of shops, both chains and independents. Examples are Marks & Spencer's, Fat Face, Next, Poundland, WH Smiths, Boots etc. The Town Centre is spread across several streets and a outdoor pedestrianised shopping centre called the Orchards.
There are a number of Charity Shops, best value of which are the Greyhound Trust and Age UK on South Road.
There are also some nice independent shops around, such as Sussex Crafts (a craft and yarn shop) on South Road, and a gift shop in the Orchards. There is a greengrocer and a butchers on the Broadway, and another butchers and some second hand furniture shops on Sussex Road.
Haywards Heath has two main supermarkets, Sainsburys and Waitrose. The Waitrose opened in April 2017 and features a cafe and wine bar and is conveniently situated next to the train station. There is also an M&S Foodhall in the store in town, as well as an Iceland on South Road. There are a number of convenience stores situated across the town too.
The Broadway features an array of bars and restaurants, both chain and independent. There are pubs dotted across the town, most of which service food. About a 30 minute walk/5 minute drive from town is Lindfield, which has various pubs and independent restaurants.
Try out Flinder's Coffee on South Road for breakfast and light lunches - nice little independent coffee shop selling locally sourced food where possible.
Tory's Café in the Park also does lovely lunches, cakes, sweet treats, excellent hot chocolates and speciality freak shakes.
Italian: Zizzis & Pizza Express both exist in the Broadway and offer good value for money. Paulino Italian Restaurant is an independent Italian on Lindfield High Street, and offers delicious home cooked meals.
Pubs: The Burrell - right next to the station, standard pub grub.. The Star and The Lockhart Tavern are both on the Broadway - Lockhart does various small brewery craft beers and is a bit more hipster but friendly and does good food! The Heath is further out of town along Sussex Road and is a pretty standard pub.
There are a number of pubs throughout the town, such as the Burrell by the station and the Star and the Lockhart Tavern on the Broadway.
The Broadway itself is the main place to go, and has a number of bars, restaurants and pubs. Haywards Heath isn't the most lively of scenes but can get busy on the weekends and can still make a good night out.
Hotels: The Birch Hotel - only hotel actually in the town, is near the hospital end of town and is reasonably good value for money. Ockenden Manor - Country hotel & Spa a few miles out of town in the pleasant village of Cuckfield, expensive but nice. Highley Manor - Nice hotel around 6 miles outside of Haywards Heath in the quiet village of Balcombe.
B&Bs: Field Cottage B&B - lovely, well reviewed B&B about 4 miles out of Twyford Farm B&B - 7 miles out of town in a lovely old house, good reviews and reasonably priced. The Ardingly Inn - pub B&B a few miles out of town in the pleasant village of Ardingly.
Other: Limes Apartments - reasonably priced apartments in Lindfield.
Camping: Eco Camp at Wild Boar Wood - Well recommended glamping/eco camping a few miles out of town.
By car, train or bus, Haywards Heath is quite easy to leave.