Brentwood's name is derived from ‘Burnt Wood' (Brent being middle English for burnt), referring to a large clearing created following a fire, probably from Charcoal burning (the main occupation back then) in the dense forests that once covered this part of Essex.
Over time, it became a stopping point for pilgrims travelling to Canterbury and the remains of a 12th Century chapel in Brentwood High Street bear testimony to this.
When Henry III granted a royal charter to hold markets, the market town of Brentwood boomed, growing and evolving into the 'well-to-do' town you see today, surrounded by beautiful countryside and historic villages.
Brentwood is situated to the south -west of Essex, just east of London and falling within the Metropolitan Green Belt.
This closeness to London means that the town has excellent road and rail networks, with the town only separated from Greater London by a narrow gap of open land, through which passes the M25 Motorway.
Brentwood Railway Station is on the London Liverpool Street line, which whisks you to central London in 33 minutes, on the fastest trains.
The adjacent A12 runs between Central London and East Anglia, and the A127 links Central London to Southend.
Brentwood is enhanced by many green spaces, less than 20% of the Borough is built-up. There are a number of important green spaces reaching into the built-up area, two of which extend right to the centre of the town - Hartswood/Shenfield Common and the extensive playing fields of Brentwood School, the former Anglia Polytechnic University, with 'Thriftwood' also an extensive area of woodland set within the town.
The busy High Street has an abundance of shops, restaurants and bars, with more located down the charming cobblestoned lanes off the high street too. There are some 200 stores including the usual big-name retailers and unique independent boutiques, some within The Baytree Shopping Centre which includes a cafe and fitness centre on the second floor. Brentwood Market is held every Friday and Saturday too.
The town centre has an active Nightlife Scene with the many bars, pubs and clubs making Friday and Saturday Nights a lively affair. Perhaps check out the Sugarhut, which really the links the old with the new, being one of the oldest buildings in the town, a 15th century coaching Inn, now a huge acclaimed Nightclub.
If education is a high priority, there are many excellent schools, the Secondary schools including Brentwood County High School, Brentwood School, Brentwood Ursuline Convent High School (RC, girls), St Martin's School and Becket Keys Church of England School.
Primary education is provided by a mixture of state schools, Church of England and Catholic schools and independent prep schools.
As well as being known for the TOWIE TV series, the town has also been home to many a famous person including Frank Bruno, Snooker player Steve Davis, F1 winner Johnny Herbert, Actor Ross Kemp, Singer Pixie Lott, Singer Louise Redknapp and even The Stig!