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Dorking is a small market town in central Surrey, surrounded by the Surrey Hills. The town is surrounded on three sides by the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is close to Box Hill and Leith Hill.



Dorking appears in Domesday Book of 1086 as the Manor of Dorchinges. It was held by William the Conqueror, who had assumed the lordship in 1075 on the death of Edith of Wessex, widow of Edward the Confessor. A market at Dorking is first recorded in 1240. The town flourished in Tudor times and, in the 1590s, a market house was built between what is now St Martin's Walk and the White Horse Hotel.

In late 1914, Dorking became a garrison town. Empty houses were requisitioned and from January 1915 around 4000 troops were accommodated. Empty houses in the town also provided billets for soldiers during World War II and over 3000 school children were evacuated to the Dorking area in September 1939. Over the course of the war, 77 high-explosive bombs and 60 incendiaries were dropped by the Luftwaffe, however only one incident (in October 1940) resulted in fatalities in the town.

Get in[edit]

By car[edit]

Dorking is at the junction of the A24 (London to Worthing) and the A25 (Maidstone to Guildford) roads.

By train[edit]

Dorking has three railway stations near the town centre:

1 Dorking train station. Served by South Western Railway services to London Waterloo and Southern Railway to London Victoria. Dorking railway station (Q1914125) on Wikidata Dorking railway station on Wikipedia

2 Dorking Deepdene. Served by Great Western Railway services between Gatwick Airport and Reading. Dorking Deepdene railway station (Q2343042) on Wikidata Dorking Deepdene railway station on Wikipedia

3 Dorking West. Served by the same Great Western Railway services as Dorking Deepdene, but with fewer trains stopping here. Dorking West railway station (Q2456082) on Wikidata Dorking West railway station on Wikipedia

4 Box Hill & Westhumble. Nearby Westhumble has its own station served by Southern rail which as you might guess is convenient for getting to Box Hill. Box Hill & Westhumble railway station (Q4951526) on Wikidata Box Hill & Westhumble railway station on Wikipedia

By bus[edit]

As of Dec 2020:

  • Route 32. From Dorking to Guildford via Shere and to Redhill via Earlswood is run by Compass Bus.
  • Route 93. From Dorking to Horsham via Goodwyns and Holmwood Park is run by Metrobus on behalf of Surrey County Council.
  • Route 465. From Dorking to Kingston upon Thames via Leatherhead is run by London United.
  • Route 21. The (Epsom – Dorking – Crawley) route is run by Metrobus.
  • Route 22. The (Shere – Dorking – Crawley) route is run by Metrobus.

By bicycle[edit]

National Cycle Route 22 passes through the town centre, and the Surrey Cycleway runs to the east.

On foot[edit]

The Greensand Way, a 108-mi (174-km) long-distance footpath from Haslemere, Surrey to Hamstreet, Kent, passes through the south of Dorking. The route approaches the town centre from the east, passing over The Nower, then crossing the junction between South Street and Horsham Road. It climbs through the Glory Wood, before crossing Deepdene Terrace.

The North Downs Way, between Farnham and Dover, passes approximately 1,000 yd (1 km) to the north of Dorking. Dorking station is the southern terminus of the Mole Gap Trail, which starts at Leatherhead station.

Get around[edit]


  • Dorking Cockerel, Deepdene Roundabout. This is a 3-metre statue of a Dorking cock, sculpted by Peter Parkinson in 2007. The Dorking chicken is an ancient breed that may trace its existence back to Roman times, and its historical importance to this town is reflected in its name.
  • 1 Dorking Museum & Heritage Centre, 62 West Street, +44 1306 876591, . Th-Sa 10AM–4PM. Dorking Museum & Heritage Centre provides a 21st-century interactive and multi-sensory experience. There are things to touch, to listen to and smell, things to puzzle over and costumes to try on. Adult £2.00, seniors & under 18’s £1.00, under 5’s free, family ticket £4.50. Dorking Museum and Heritage Centre (Q42852708) on Wikidata
  • 2 Denbies Wine Estate (Denbies Vineyard), London Road, RH5 6AA, +44 1306 876616. Vineyard and winery. Tours available and they have rooms. Denbies Wine Estate (Q5256601) on Wikidata Denbies Wine Estate on Wikipedia


Polesden Lacey in Great Bookham
  • 1 Leith Hill, near Coldharbour village, +44 1306 712711, . Leith Hill is the highest point in Southeast England and is set within the Surrey Hills. Its gothic tower rises above the surrounding hills and from the top, you can see views towards London in the north and the English Channel in the south. access to the countryside on the estate is free for all. Leith Hill (Q1162517) on Wikidata Leith Hill on Wikipedia
  • 2 Box Hill (take National Rail to Box Hill and Westhumble Station, turn right out of the station, and head east to the foot of the hill), +44 1306 885502, . Forming part of the North Downs, Box Hill has views across Dorking and the surrounding countryside. It's home to wildlife and plants too, including the Adonis blue butterfly and bee orchid. The hill is a popular place for a picnic or a walk, and the trails are dotted with a handful of historic ruins and monuments. Free. Box Hill (Q895519) on Wikidata Box Hill, Surrey on Wikipedia
  • Football: Dorking Wanderers were promoted in 2022 and now play soccer in the National League, the fifth tier. They're the successors to Dorking FC, which went bust in 2017. Their home ground is Meadowbank, capacity 3000, north side of town; by train get off at Dorking West.




Kings Arms

1 The Cricketers Inn, 81 South St, RH4 2JU, +44 1306 889 938. Runs quirky events: annual Scalextric championship, an onion-growing competition.

2 Kings Arms, 45 West St, RH4 1BU, +44 1306 886 496. Dating from 14th century. Kings Arms, Dorking (Q105947595) on Wikidata

3 The Queen's Head, Horsham Rd, RH4 2JS, +44 1306 883 041. Former coaching inn from the 1780s.

Out of Dorking[edit]

4 The Plough Inn, Abinger Rd, Coldharbour, RH5 6HD, +44 1306 711 793. On the village green with it Leith Hill Microbrewery. Plough Inn Coldharbour (Q108905230) on Wikidata


1 White Horse Hotel, High Street, +44 20 76600685.

2 Wotton House, Guilford Road, +44 1306 730000, fax: +44 1306 737300, . Check-in: 2PM, check-out: 11AM. This hotel and event venue has 111 bedrooms, 38 meeting or event suites, a leisure club and restaurant. It's a 10-minute drive from Dorking, on the road to Guildford. Originally the centre of the Wotton Estate and the seat of the Evelyn family, it was the birthplace in 1620 of diarist and landscape gardener John Evelyn, who built the first Italian Garden in England there. Its architectural features include distinctive terracotta decorations on brickwork, octagonal turrets and stacks, winged gryphons on the porch, and more. £89-139.


As of June 2021, Dorking has 4G from all UK carriers. 5G has not yet reached town.

Go next[edit]

  • North to Leatherhead 6.2 mi (10.0 km) along the A24 over the Surrey Hills.
  • South to Horsham 13.4 mi (21.6 km) along the A24.
  • West to Guildford {13 mi (21 km) along the A25.
Routes through Dorking
London ← Leatherhead ←  N  S  HorshamWorthing
Guildford  W  E  RedhillSevenoaks

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