Is Grays, Essex, The Next London Commuter Belt Hotspot?

This ancient fishing village has plans for a town centre upgrade and more than 3,500 new homes.


Diarist Samuel Pepys was familiar more than 300 years ago with this ancient fishing village, now a good-sized town 20 miles east of London.

It is slightly dilapidated in parts, and the town centre has suffered from the drain of business to the Intu Lakeside shopping centre, but its big bonuses are good transport links and planned regeneration.

Thurrock council has funding to start an upgrade of the town centre and Grays Beach, build a theatre and support the creation of more than 3,500 new homes.

Vital Statistics

  • Average property price: £245,767
  • Price increase since 2007: 50 per cent
  • Average price for a house: £293,529
  • Train journey time: 35 minutes
  • Schooling is of a mainly high standard

For seniors, The Hathaway Academy and Grays Convent High School have “good” reports from Ofsted, while Quarry Hill primary academy is “outstanding” according to the education watchdog.

The fast commute to Fenchurch Street gives residents great access to the City of London.

You’re just 15 miles away from east London, the Essex countryside and the North Norfolk coast.

In the town centre, streets such as College Avenue and Bradleigh Avenue are lined with large, detached Victorian and Edwardian family houses with four to five bedrooms, priced at about £600,000 to £700,000.

Nearby is pretty, villagey Orsett with its pub and cricket pitch and expensive period homes — from £800,000 to £900,000 for a four-bedroom house.

Little Thurrock is cheaper, where a Thirties house with a bay frontage and three bedrooms would cost about £350,000.

Grays, is certainly one to watch in 2018.

– Courtesy of ES Homes and Property

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