History of Merstham

There have been settlements in and around Merstham before the Roman invasion and is mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086. There has been a great deal of quarrying in the area; Reigate Stone, Hearthstone and lime were the main products.

St Katherine's Church was built on the site of a Saxon church. A Norman church was built here in about 1100, but all that remains of it is the font, a piscina and a few stones. The present building dates from about 1220; the tower, nave and chancel date from the 13th century; the porch is 14th or 15th century and there were substantial change mde in the 19th century.

Near the end of Quality Street is a display of the track of the Croydon, Merstham & Godstone Iron Railway. This was an extension of the Surrey Iron Railway which was the World's first public railway and ran from Wandsworth to Croydon. The line was opened in 1805 and closed around 1840 when the London to Brighton railway was under construction.

The London & Brighton Railway opened in 1841 although the first short-lived station was at Battlebridge Lane to the south of the town for the benefit of the Gatton estate. This section of the railway was taken over by the South Eastern Railway who repositioned the station to its present site.

Alfred Nobel demonstrated dynamite in a Merstham quarry in 1868.

© Reigate and Redhill Society 1952 - 2024