Located in the tiny Surrey parish of West End, this 120-year-old pub is full of original features and enjoys an idyllic village setting among leafy streets and charming period homes.
Built in 1892, the Prince of Wales has kept much of its original character, though a large leafy pub garden, modern décor and cosy furniture have brought it up to speed with modern times. A friendly and relaxed venue, the pub enjoys a lovely setting in West End, a hamlet with little more than a few residential streets and a local farm shop, Garson’s, where you can buy local produce and pick your own fruit and vegetables during the summer months, for company.
A large green and duck pond are 30 metres away from the pub’s front doors and there are good woodland and waterside walks nearby for pre or post-lunch strolls.Read more...
West End is part of Esher, a pretty London suburb around 15 miles southwest of Charring Cross. Esher is an ancient town and has been a magnet for royal, aristocratic and celebrity residents for centuries. As far back as the 16th century, wealthy courtesans of King Henry VIII were building homes here. Queen Victoria had a royal residence in the town in the 1860s and the 20th century saw it become the home of a number of lords, ladies, viscounts and duchesses. George Harrison lived here in the 1960s, during which time he regularly hosted the rest of the Beatles in his home recording studio. And Bee Gees frontman Maurice Gibb called the town home until his death in 2004. Today, a number of Chelsea Football Club players live locally to be close to the club’s training ground in the nearby village of Cobham. Esher also has a literary claim to fame, having provided the setting for one of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes mysteries, ‘The Adventure of Wisteria Lodge’.
Half a mile from the pub is Claremont Landscape Garden, a green oasis on the doorstep of the capital. The gardens are the Grade I-listed grounds of Queen Victoria’s former royal residence, Claremont House, an 18th-century Palladian mansion built for Robert Clive, the founder of Britain's Indian Empire. The house was later bought by the British Nation as a wedding gift for Princess Charlotte, George IV's daughter, and her husband Prince Leopold of Saxe-Coburg. Leopold lent Claremont to his niece, Queen Victoria, who in turn lent it to the French king, Louis-Philippe. Now in use as an independent school, the house itself is not available for public visits but the stunning 18th-century landscaped gardens are open to explore. Considered among the finest in Europe when they were first established, the gardens are just as striking today. Take time to wander this National Trust-managed estate and you’ll discover treasures such as a turfed amphitheatre, a serpentine lake and a 250-year-old tower with views across London. The grounds are a history lesson in landscape gardening, being among the oldest surviving examples of their kind and showcasing the talent of some of Britain’s most celebrated landscape gardeners, including Capability Brown and William Kent.
Just over a mile from the Prince of Wales pub is Sandown Park, the late Queen Mother’s favourite horse racing course. Sandown is an iconic venue with a history of legendary races involving some of the sport’s biggest names. Racing has been held regularly here since the course first opened in 1875, but today it also hosts a number of trade shows, fairs and live performances from chart-topping acts, which all draw in crowds.
A 15-minute drive from the pub will take you to the rides and shows of Chessington World of Adventures. This enormous all-action family attraction has a huge theme park with more than 40 wild rollercoasters, water rides and attractions all spread over 10 different themed areas. The complex also houses an extensive high ropes course, a sea life centre and Chessington Zoo, where you can see more than 1,000 animals, from western lowland gorillas to Sumatran tigers.Show less...