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South East England

South East England
South East
South East region in England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Country England
Status Region
 - Total
Ranked 3rd
19,095 km²
7,373 sq mi
 - Total
 - Density
Ranked 1st
8,635,000 (2011)
452/km2 (1,170/sq mi)
GVA per capita £22,624 (2nd)
Admin HQ Guildford
Leadership South East England Councils
Development agency SEEDA
European parliament South East England
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of

South East England is one of nine official regions of England at the first level of NUTS for statistical purposes. It consists of Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, East Sussex, Hampshire, the Isle of Wight, Kent, Oxfordshire, Surrey and West Sussex. As with the other regions of England, apart from Greater London, the South East has no elected government. The Labour Party's proposals during the general election of 1997 to create elected regional governments were abandoned.

It is the third largest region of England, with an area of 19,096 km² (7,373 sq mi), and is also the most populous with a total population of over eight and a half million (2011). The headquarters for the region's governmental bodies are in Guildford, and the region contains seven cities: Brighton and Hove, Canterbury, Chichester, Oxford, Portsmouth, Southampton and Winchester, though other major settlements include Reading and Milton Keynes. Its proximity to London and connections to several national motorways have led to South East England becoming an economic hub, with the largest economy in the country outside the capital. It is the location of Gatwick Airport, the UK's second-busiest airport, and its coastline along the English Channel provides numerous ferry crossings to mainland Europe.

The region is known for its countryside, which includes the North Downs and the Chiltern Hills as well as two national parks: the New Forest and the South Downs. The River Thames flows through the region and its basin is known as the Thames Valley. It is also the location for a number of internationally known places of interest, such as HMS Victory in Portsmouth, Cliveden in Buckinghamshire, Thorpe Park and RHS Wisley in Surrey, Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, Windsor Castle in Berkshire, Leeds Castle, the White Cliffs of Dover and Canterbury Cathedral in Kent, Brighton Pier in East Sussex, and Wakehurst Place in West Sussex. The region has many universities, the most famous being the University of Oxford.

South East England is host to various sporting events, including the annual Henley Royal Regatta, Royal Ascot and the Epsom Derby, and sporting venues include Wentworth Golf Club and Brands Hatch. Some of the events of the 2012 Summer Olympics were held in the South East, including the rowing at Eton Dorney and part of the cycling road race in the Surrey Hills.


  • Geography 1
    • Historical boundaries 1.1
    • Alternative definitions 1.2
  • Demographics 2
  • Local government 3
  • Politics of the area 4
  • Eurostat NUTS 5
  • Transport 6
    • Transport policy 6.1
  • Economy 7
    • Berkshire 7.1
    • Surrey 7.2
    • Buckinghamshire 7.3
    • Hampshire 7.4
    • Sussex 7.5
    • Kent 7.6
    • Oxfordshire 7.7
  • Education 8
    • Schools 8.1
    • Universities 8.2
  • Local media 9
  • See also 10
  • References 11
  • External links 12


The largest city in the region is Brighton & Hove. The dominant influence on the region's economy is neighbouring London. The highest point is Walbury Hill in Berkshire at 297 metres (974 ft).

Historical boundaries

Until 1999, there was a South East Standard Statistical Region, which also included the counties of Bedfordshire, Greater London, Essex and Hertfordshire. The former South East Civil Defence Region covered the same area as the current government office region.

Alternative definitions

A notice in Oxford from the Government Office for the South East.

In unofficial usage, the South East can refer to a varying area - sometimes only to London, Kent, East Sussex, West Sussex, and Surrey; but sometimes to an area corresponding to the former Standard Statistical Region (above). The South East is also occasionally used as a synonym for the home counties.


The population of the region at the 2001 census was 8,000,550, making it the most populous English region. The major conurbations of the region include Brighton/Worthing/Littlehampton (population in 2001 461,000), Portsmouth (442,000), Reading (370,000) and Southampton (304,000).[1] Settlements closer to London are part of the conurbation known as the Greater London Urban Area.

The South East has the highest percentage of people born outside of Britain other than London. Estimates in 2007 state 87.2% of people as White British, 4.8% Other White (inc. 1.0% Irish), 3.5% South Asians, 1.5% Mixed Race, 1.6% Black British, 0.7% Chinese, 0.7% Other.[2]

Woodlands Road in Virginia Water, Surrey, has the highest average house price of any street in the region.

Population of the South East of England[3]
Census Population Change
1801 962,350
1811 1,072,563 Increase 10.3
1821 1,239,883 Increase 13.5
1831 1,378,755 Increase 10.1
1841 1,561,792 Increase 11.7
1851 1,687,558 Increase 7.5
1861 1,957,208 Increase 13.8
1871 2,226,880 Increase 12.1
1881 2,496,534 Increase 10.8
1891 2,776,842 Increase 10.1
1901 3,093,606 Increase 10.2
1911 3,472,091 Increase 10.9
1921 3,718,228 Increase 6.6
1931 3,995,122 Increase 6.9
1941 4,443,002 Increase 10.1
1951 4,976,340 Increase 10.7
1961 5,738,844 Increase 13.3
1971 6,718,771 Increase 14.6
1981 7,025,593 Increase 4.4
1991 7,677,641 Increase 8.5
2001 8,000,550 Increase 4.0
2011 8,634,800 Increase 7.9

Local government

The official region consists of the following subdivisions:

Map Ceremonial county Shire county / unitary Districts
1. Berkshire aWest Berkshire U.A.
bReading U.A.
cWokingham U.A.
dBracknell Forest U.A.
eWindsor and Maidenhead U.A.
fSlough U.A.
Buckinghamshire 2. Buckinghamshire aSouth Bucks, bChiltern, cWycombe, dAylesbury Vale
3. Milton Keynes U.A.
East Sussex 4. East Sussex aHastings, bRother, cWealden, dEastbourne, eLewes
5. Brighton & Hove U.A.
Hampshire 6. Hampshire aFareham, bGosport, cWinchester, dHavant, eEast Hampshire, fHart, gRushmoor, hBasingstoke and Deane, iTest Valley, jEastleigh, kNew Forest
7. Southampton U.A.
8. Portsmouth U.A.
9. Isle of Wight
Kent 10. Kent aDartford, bGravesham, cSevenoaks, dTonbridge and Malling, eTunbridge Wells, fMaidstone, gSwale, hAshford, iShepway, jCanterbury, kDover, lThanet
11. Medway U.A.
12. Oxfordshire aOxford, bCherwell, cSouth Oxfordshire, dVale of White Horse, eWest Oxfordshire
13. Surrey aSpelthorne, bRunnymede, cSurrey Heath, dWoking, eElmbridge, fGuildford, gWaverley, hMole Valley, iEpsom and Ewell, jReigate and Banstead, kTandridge
14. West Sussex aWorthing, bArun, cChichester, dHorsham, eCrawley, fMid Sussex, gAdur

See: List of districts in south east England by population

Politics of the area

The South East of England is the most Conservative voting region of Britain in terms of both seats and votes. The area also has some strong supporting seats for other parties such as Slough and Oxford for Labour, Lewes for the Liberal Democrats and Brighton Pavilion which is held by the Green Party. Buckingham, the seat of Speaker John Bercow, is also in this region. Out of 83 available parliamentary seats, the Conservatives have 74. Although having an overwhelming share of the seats, the Conservatives only gained 49.9% of votes, the Lib Dems 26.2%, and Labour gained 16.2%. Overall there was a swing of 2% from the Lib Dems to the Conservatives, although most of the seats that changed hands were from Labour to Conservative (13 lost and 14 gained).

The South East England Regional Assembly was based on the A3100 road in Guildford near the London Road railway station. It was abolished on 31 March 2009 and replaced with South East England Councils in Kingston upon Thames.

Eurostat NUTS

In the Eurostat Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics (NUTS), South East England is a level-1 NUTS region, coded "UKJ", which is subdivided as follows:

NUTS 1 Code NUTS 2 Code NUTS 3 Code
South East England UKJ Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, and Oxfordshire UKJ1 Berkshire UKJ11
Milton Keynes UKJ12
Buckinghamshire CC UKJ13
Oxfordshire UKJ14
Surrey, East and West Sussex UKJ2 Brighton and Hove UKJ21
East Sussex CC UKJ22
Surrey UKJ23
West Sussex CC UKJ24
Hampshire and Isle of Wight UKJ3 Portsmouth UKJ31
Southampton UKJ32
Hampshire CC UKJ33
Isle of Wight UKJ34
Kent UKJ4 Medway UKJ41
Kent CC UKJ42


Redhill with the diesel Class 166 service run by First Great Western to Reading as the line has not got the Third rail electrification fully installed on the North Downs Line.
Most main routes in the region are radials from London. Shown here is the A21. It is one of the major north-south routes connecting London and commuter towns and the coast

The main road transport routes are along the M1 through Buckinghamshire; the M40 through Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire; the M4 through Berkshire and Buckinghamshire; the M2 motorway/A2 and M20 through Kent; the M23 through West Sussex; the M3 through Hampshire. All these routes connect to the M25, which runs near to and occasionally through the region's border with Greater London.

The A34 provides a north-south road link through Oxfordshire, Berkshire and Hampshire. The east-west corridor through the south of the region is provided by the A27 and the M27.

The main intercontinental airport is Gatwick Airport, with regional airports at Kent International Airport (Ramsgate), Shoreham Airport and Southampton Airport. Heathrow Airport is in Greater London but also serves (and is serviced by) the South East region.

The Great Western Main Line passes through Berkshire and southern Buckinghamshire. The South Eastern Main Line and High Speed 1 pass through Kent; the latter connects to the Channel Tunnel. The Brighton Main Line passes through Surrey and West Sussex. The North Downs Line runs from Berkshire then through Surrey to connect with Sussex and Kent. The West Coast Main Line passes through northern Buckinghamshire. The Chiltern Main Line is a major commuter line between Birmingham and London passing through central Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. The Port of Dover and the port at Folkestone have many ferry services to France and though none currently run to Belgium.

Transport policy

As part of the transport planning system the Regional Assembly is under statutory requirement to produce a Regional Transport Strategy (RTS) to provide long term planning for transport in the region. This involves region wide transport schemes such as those carried out by the Highways Agency and Network Rail.[4]

Within the region the local transport authorities carry out transport planning through the use of a Local Transport Plan (LTP) which outlines their strategies, policies and implementation programme.[5] The most recent LTP is that for the period 2006-11. In the South East region the following transport authorities have published their LTP online: Bracknell Forest U.A.,[6] Brighton & Hove U.A.,[7] Buckinghamshire,[8] East Sussex,[9] Hampshire,[10] Isle of Wight,[11] Kent,[12] Medway U.A.,[13] Milton Keynes U.A.,[14] Oxfordshire,[15] Portsmouth U.A.,[16] Reading U.A.,[17] Slough U.A.,[18] Southampton U.A.,[19] Surrey,[20] Windsor and Maidenhead U.A.,[21] Wokingham U.A.[22] and West Sussex.[23]


The South East of England is a very prosperous area with the second largest regional economy in the UK (after London), valued at £177 billion in 2006.[24] GDP per capita in 2007 was estimated at £22,624, compared with a UK average of £19,956, making South East England the second richest region per capita, behind London.[25] The South East England Development Agency is in Guildford, with another site in Chatham. The region's Manufacturing Advisory Service is on the A30 in Hook, north Hampshire[26] The UKTI service for the region[27] is on Victory Park in Whiteley, off junction 9 of the M27, opposite the Solent Hotel.[28]

There are two strategic health authorities for the region - NHS South East Coast in Horley, Surrey, north-east of Gatwick Airport, and NHS South Central (for the west of the region), on the Newbury Business Park in the east of Newbury, off the A4. Similarly there is the South East Coast Ambulance Service on the B2163 at Coxheath (for Kent), on the A217 at Banstead (for Surrey), and on the A277 in Lewes (for Sussex). The South Central Ambulance Service is headquartered on the B4100 next to Bicester Town railway station, with offices at Otterbourne, Hampshire and Wokingham. The charity-funded air ambulances are Kent Air Ambulance at Marden, Kent; Hampshire & Isle of Wight Air Ambulance at Thruxton, Hampshire; Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance at Dunsfold Aerodrome, Surrey; and the Thames Valley Air Ambulance at RAF Benson.

Many high technology companies are located near the M3 in Surrey and the M4 in Berkshire. Sun Microsystems have their UK base in Blackwater near Camberley. Microsoft and Oracle have their UK headquarters next door to each other in Reading, as do the Yell Group and Logica (near junction 11 of the M4). Symantec UK is in nearby Whitley. The Gatwick Diamond is also a hub for hi-tech industry, centred at Gatwick Airport with Epsom to the north and Burgess Hill to the south. The largest company, by turnover, in the South East is Vodafone, followed by Ineos.


Horlicks factory in Slough

Companies in Berkshire essentially follow the M4 corridor. PepsiCo have their UK base in Theale as have Nvidia UK and Wolseley, the builders' and plumbers' merchants who own Bathstore and Plumb Center. Harley-Davidson UK is in Pangbourne. Vodafone, High and Mighty and Bayer UK are based in Newbury. The Atomic Weapons Establishment is in Aldermaston on the Hampshire boundary. The Motor Insurance Repair Research Centre and Xtrac Limited are at Thatcham. The Royal School of Military Survey is in Hermitage. East of the A34, north of the M4, at Compton since 1992 is the UK HQ of Baxter Healthcare, part of a global company which is working on a vaccine for H1N1, and next door is the Institute for Animal Health, which also researches H1N1. Porsche Cars Great Britain is in Calcot near Reading.

Pentax UK and Groupe SEB UK (owner of Krups, Moulinex, Rowenta, and Tefal) are in Langley near Slough. Mars Limited has a large chocolate factory, run under the name of Effem Holdings Ltd, also in Slough on the enormous Slough Trading Estate, as is Johnson Controls UK (car seats), and ICI Paints, who own Cuprinol, Polyfilla, and Dulux. Horlicks is made by GSK there. Oki UK (desktop printers) are based next to Mars. Honda UK, Citroën UK, Fiat UK, Douwe Egberts UK (and its owner Sara Lee UK), BlackBerry UK, Black & Decker Europe, Kidde UK (fire detection), Logitech UK, McAfee UK, Polycom UK, LG Group UK, The Garden Centre Group (former Wyevale), Furniture Village, Amazon UK, Ingres UK, Telefónica O2 Europe UK and Reckitt Benckiser are also in Slough. Lonza UK makes biopharmaceuticals (monoclonal antibodies) on the A4.

Jealott's Hill pesticide research station

Centrica is in Dedworth, next to Windsor Racecourse. Bisham Abbey, on the Thames, is a site of one of the National Sports Centres. HMV Group, Nortel UK, Hitachi Europe, Hutchison 3G UK, NSK Europe, Weight Watchers UK, The Rank Group (leisure), and Costain are in Maidenhead, and GSK makes Sensodyne, Corsodyl and Macleans there. Hanson UK is based at the A4/A308 roundabout. Toys "R" Us UK and Mattel UK are next to the A404(M).

BG Group, Primark UK, Baumatic UK, Thames Water, Jacobs Engineering UK, Verizon Communications UK and Guide Dogs for the Blind are in Reading. On 2 April 2010 Heineken UK closed the Berkshire Brewery, which was the largest brewery in Europe.

Borland UK, Interserve and Mabey Group, the bridge manufacturer, are in Twyford and Cawston Vale is in Hurst. Magal Engineering make clutches and power steering systems at Woodley. Bang & Olufsen UK is in Winnersh. Foster Wheeler UK is in Shinfield in the old headquarters of Berkshire County Council, next to the M4, and Trader Media Group is in nearby Earley, and Snell (former Snell & Wilcox) is an important video technology company based on the B3270 in Lower Earley next to the M4. The Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME) are based at Arborfield Garrison, partly in Barkham.

Cable & Wireless, Dell UK, Panasonic UK, BMW UK, HP UK, Syngenta UK, Honeywell UK, IHS UK (owner of Jane's Information Group), Avis Europe (with Budget UK), Novell UK, 3M UK, and Waitrose are in Bracknell. Just to the north, Syngenta have their main worldwide (pesticide) research centre at Jealott's Hill, formerly owned by ICI. The Transport Research Laboratory and Broadmoor Hospital are in Crowthorne.


Sheilas' Wheels outside the head office of esure in Reigate

Allianz Insurance have their UK headquarters in Guildford as do Ericsson, Colgate-Palmolive UK, Constellation Brands Europe, Electronic Arts (formerly in Chertsey before 2008), Sanofi-Aventis, the CTC, Surrey Satellite Technology, Avaya UK, and Philips UK. BOC Gases UK are also in Guildford. The former company, now owned by The Linde Group, was based in Windlesham. British Car Auctions is on the A325 in Farnham. Scotts Garden Chemicals are at Catteshall. Motor company McLaren and McLaren Automotive are based at the McLaren Technology Centre in Woking as are the UK base of Yum Restaurants (owner of KFC), SABMiller, SPSS (statistical software), and Capgemini; Tupperware UK is in Knaphill, and Bisley Office Furniture, on the A322, is the UK's leading manufacturer of office furniture. Friends Provident and Kuoni Travel are in Dorking, where Johnston Sweepers is the world's leading manufacturer of street sweepers, with another plant at Murston in Sittingbourne. Canon UK, Esure, Sheilas' Wheels and Kimberley Clark Europe are in Reigate. Scotia Gas Networks is in Horley. Bristow Aviation is at Redhill and the food research centre Campden-BRI is at Nutfield. Cubic Transportation Systems make ticket barriers on the Perrywood Business Park south of Redhill, and were responsible for the Oyster card.

In the area straddling the M25, the huge Compass Group is based in Chertsey as is Samsung UK, Siemon UK, the business facilities company Regus, and Britax. Thales Group UK, Juniper Networks UK (routers), and Royal Caribbean Cruises UK are in Addlestone; at Hamm Moor on the A317 is the UK corporate headquarters of Toshiba, with another base in Camberley. Near Weybridge are the UK headquarters of Sony (situated in Byfleet) and Procter & Gamble (next door to each other near the Brooklands racing circuit), the local newspaper group Newsquest, Gallaher Group (cigarettes), Kia Motors UK, Petroleum Geo-Services UK, Yamaha Motors UK; the Central Veterinary Laboratory, which is run by the Veterinary Laboratories Agency, is in New Haw to the west.

Esso UK is based in Leatherhead

Mouchel is in West Byfleet. Air Products UK is in Walton-on-Thames. Atkins, the civil engineering company, and Toyota UK (towards Banstead) are in Epsom. Dairy Crest is in Esher. SHL Group (former Saville & Holdsworth) is just to the north-east at Thames Ditton. Samaritans is in Ewell. Ann Summers is in Whyteleafe near Caterham. Caterham Cars Sales and Marketing offices are in Caterham. Swift Cover, Berkeley Group Holdings and Cargill Europe are in Cobham. Pfizer UK is in Walton-on-the-Hill. Edmund Nuttall, City Link Ltd., Adaptec UK, Stihl UK, Fluor UK (construction and civil engineering), and Krispy Kreme UK are in Camberley and S.C. Johnson UK is in Frimley Green. Siemens UK, Novartis UK, BAE Systems Integrated System Technologies, and AMD UK are in Frimley, home to the Lakeside Leisure Complex.

ExxonMobil UK (Esso), part of the largest oil company in the world, is in Leatherhead, as is the research centre Leatherhead Food International, Unilever Bestfoods (in Crawley before 2008), Puma UK, the Wates Group, and Robert Dyas. Photo-Me International is in Great Bookham. Although BP has its international headquarters in central London, most of its UK division (chemicals and energy) is headquartered at Sunbury-on-Thames, with Kingston Technology Europe (the world's second largest producer of flash memory), just inside the Surrey boundary, and Chubb Security. Enterprise Rent-a-Car UK is near Thorpe, near to Cemex UK and Thorpe Park (situated on a series of former gravel pits). Shepperton Studios is next to Littleton, Spelthorne. Del Monte Foods UK is in Staines-upon-Thames on the side of the A30 and Dalkia UK is on the A308; British Gas is on the A308 in Pooley Green nearby to the west.


Martin Baker Mk 9 ejection seat

RAF Air Command, Hyundai UK and Tetra Pak UK at Wycombe Marsh on the A40, Dreams, the UK base of Ariston (now owned by Indesit), Wilkinson Sword, the food technology centre of Premier Foods and Rank Hovis's HQ, Merisant UK, and Staples are based in High Wycombe; Swedish Match UK (all their matches are made in Sweden) are in Totteridge. Johnson & Johnson UK have their base at Booker next to the M40 near Handy Cross. Kawasaki UK and Psion Teklogix UK are in Bourne End. Wyeth UK (pharmaceuticals) is in Burnham, next to the M4 Huntercombe Spur junction.

The UK base of Robert Bosch is in Denham. Martin-Baker is in Higher Denham, and InterContinental Hotels Group is in Denham Green (formerly in Windsor). Pioneer UK is in Stoke Poges and Cummins have a design plant in Iver, with Pinewood Studios in Iver Heath. Servier Laboratories UK is in Wexham. The Barracuda Group (owner of Varsity), Lexmark UK, Volvo Cars UK, and Trend Micro UK are in Marlow. GE Healthcare has its world HQ in Little Chalfont. Uniq plc is in Gerrards Cross. NT CADCAM in Haddenham is the UK distributor of the industry-standard SolidWorks CAD software package. Acco UK (stationery) are on the A418 in Aylesbury, opposite Aylesbury College; Askeys have made ice cream cones since 1965 next to the A4157 and Grand Union Canal.

The OU at Milton Keynes

Milton Keynes is home to many national companies such as Santander UK operations (née Abbey). The Home Retail Group (Argos and Homebase), Filtrona and BP Oil UK (retail) are in Central Milton Keynes. Rightmove is in Winterhill, Campbell Park. Nearby, on the other side of A5, Leica Geosystems is in Loughton. Further north, Luminar Leisure in Rooksley, Bradwell at the A5/A509 junction near the National Badminton Centre. To the west, the European HQ of WD-40 is in Kiln Farm, Bradwell Abbey. To the north, NEFF UK is in Wolverton and Greenleys. To the east, near the M1 and the A422 in Great Linford, Chrysler UK (Jeep and Dodge), Scania UK (part of VW), Rohan (clothing), Makita UK (power tools), Bong Ljungdahl UK who make envelopes, and Mercedes-Benz UK (including Smart Cars) are in Tongwell. VAG UK (VW and Audi) is nearby on the other side of the A422 in Blakelands. In the south of Milton Keynes, The Open University is in Walton Hall, in Walton. Domino's Pizza UK and Fisher & Paykel UK (fridges) are in Kingston, Milton Keynes Village, and Duravit UK (bathroom plumbing) are to the south. Red Bull Racing is off the A4146 in Tilbrook, Bow Brickhill. Chemetall, a chemical company, is in Denbigh West, Bletchley. Welcome Break is in Newport Pagnell, where Aston Martin had a factory until 2007.


The Army have a large garrison in Aldershot, with Sandhurst being nearby. Elica also make extractor hoods in Aldershot, and the European HQ of the Computer Sciences Corporation consulting firm is based at the A323/A325 roundabout. Farnborough has many international aerospace companies including BAE Systems and QinetiQ, as well as Nokia UK, Autodesk UK, Sofa Workshop, and Thomson Local directory.

HQ of Draper Tools

The Ordnance Survey and a factory of Ford, near Southampton Airport and junction 5 (A335) of the M27, are based in Southampton. Skandia Insurance have their UK base there. Carnival Corporation & plc, the world's largest cruise ship operator, has one of its two headquarters at Carnival House. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency is in the town centre near the A3057.

B&Q and Draper Tools are based in Chandler's Ford, also Pips Technology (owned by Federal Signal Corporation) who make ANPR cameras. Prysmian Cables & Systems, who make high-tension electric cables (for offshore windfarms), communication cables and fire-resistant cable, are off the B3037 in Eastleigh, next to a rail servicing plant and the River Itchen. Bacardi-Martini and London Camera Exchange are in Winchester and four miles (6 km) north-west, Arqiva (broadcasting infrastructure) are based in Crawley, Hampshire. IAC UK, an acoustics company, is off junction 9 of the M3 north of Winchester. Garmin Europe is in Hounsdown just west of Southampton. Esso has its main UK refinery at Fawley (the largest refinery, by production, in the UK). Roke Manor Research Limited at Roke Manor at Romsey Extra developed the Hawk-Eye system in 2001. Cannon Technologies next to the railway in the west of New Milton make computer ancillary equipment and data centres.

NATS headquarters at Swanwick

Chemring Group and the National Air Traffic Services (NATS) are in Whiteley (Swanwick) near Zurich Insurance UK. At Locks Heath is Estée Lauder UK, next to the A27. Raymarine Marine Electronics (owned by FLIR Systems) off the A27 at Titchfield is the world's leading leisure marine electronics company. CooperVision make contact lenses, and Gemalto UK make chip and pin cards at Segensworth; GE Aviation, on a site which was formerly Folland Aircraft then BAe Aerostructures, has a factory at Hamble-le-Rice which makes composites for airframes and racing cars, using products such as Bismaleimide resin. Best Buy Europe is in Hedge End. Camper and Nicholsons closed their Gosport boatyard in 2005. Kenwood Limited is in Havant. Lockheed Martin U.K. is at the Langstone Technology Park[29] off the A3023, near the A27, at Brockhampton, near to Apollo Fire Detectors, and Lewmar makes anchors, winches, (Navtec) rigging and (Whitlock) boat steering systems

At Southwick House is the home of the Defence College of Policing and Guarding and the Regimental Headquarters of the Royal Military Police, which was where D-Day was planned, being known as SHAEF. VT Group is based in Hedge End, with VT Education & Skills and VT Flagship based in North Harbour, Portsmouth. Much of the Royal Navy is based at HMNB Portsmouth with BAE Systems Surface Ships. IBM is headquartered in Cosham, North Portsmouth, with large laboratories in Hursley House.

Virgin Media and Serco Group are based in Hook. The Police Staff College, Bramshill, the Police's main training centre, is nearby to the north. MJ Gleeson, the construction firm, is in Blackwater and Hawley near Fleet, next to the M3.

The AA's headquarters at Fanum House in Basingstoke

The Motorola UK and De La Rue are on the Viables industrial estate next to the M3 and Cranbourne; De La Rue have a main banknote printing works at Overton Mill in Overton, to the west towards the A34, and a holographics factory on the Daneshill industrial estate in the west of the town.

Ineos, the third largest chemicals company in the world, is in Lyndhurst. Twinings (who also own Ovaltine) and Stannah Lifts are in Andover. The Army Air Corps trains at Middle Wallop, off the A343. Britten-Norman (B-N Group) make turboprop aeroplanes on the Isle of Wight. The Danish Vestas (former NEG Micon before 2004) closed the UK's only wind turbine factory on the Isle of Wight in 2010.


Virgin Atlantic

The RSPCA is on the A24 in Southwater, south of Horsham. Campina UK is in Horsham. Cats Protection is at the National Cat Centre on the A275 in Danehill in the Ashdown Forest. Roche Diagnostics' UK headquarters and CAE Inc. UK are in the Victoria Business Park in the west of Burgess Hill. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars make vehicles at Westhampnett off the A27. Vie at Home is at Tangmere. Southern Water is on the A2032 in Durrington, Worthing. Virgin Atlantic is off the A23 on the Manor Royal Ind Estate in the north of Crawley, as is Edwards (former BOC Edwards), an international engineering company that makes vacuum pumps, with another plant on the A259 in Kingston by Sea, Shoreham. Also on Manor Royal are the headquarters of Spirent, G4S, Doosan Babcock Energy, Air Miles (now called Avios since November 2011), Pilz UK and TUI Travel PLC with TUI Airline Management (the fifth largest European air carrier). Colas Ltd (road engineering) is in Worth, east of Crawley. The Caravan Club is in East Grinstead. The Body Shop is at the A259/B2187 roundabout in Toddington, Littlehampton. Palmer and Harvey is in Hove. American Express UK is in Brighton. Jones Bootmaker head office is based in Eastbourne. Smith & Ouzman, a security printing company off the A22/A2290 roundabout prints exam papers, ballot papers and examination certificates; it printed the UK's driving licences until 2001. To the north, Metro Drinks are in Arlington. Servomex, a gas analysis company, is based Crowborough. Ricardo plc, the engineering consultancy, is on the A27 next to Shoreham Airport and River Adur. Merrydown cider was formerly made in Horam until 2004, when it was bought by SHS Group of Belfast.


BAE Systems Electronics, Intelligence & Support is next to Rochester Airport and the M2, where they make helmet mounted displays and head-up displays. The Royal Engineers and the Royal School of Military Engineering are based in Chatham. London Thamesport is on the Isle of Grain.

Bovis Homes is near Gravesend, and in Northfleet on the B2175, Kimberly-Clark makes enough Andrex each week to stretch to the Moon. Caterham Cars manufacturers of British sports cars including the Caterham 7 have their manufacturing facilities in Dartford.Fairy is made by Procter & Gamble in Dartford, and Mazda UK is based there. Bluewater in Greenhithe is the third-largest shopping centre in the UK. South East Water is in Snodland. Geographers' A-Z Map Company is based in Borough Green on the A227, near the M26. Aylesford Newsprint (owned by Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget and Mondi Group), between the M20 and River Medway, makes newsprint and is Europe's largest recycler of paper. Rolex since 2010 has had its European headquarters (it moved from Bexley) at Kings Hill near West Malling on the A228; Kimberly-Clark have their UK HQ there, near FLIR Systems UK (thermal imaging). DS Smith Paper, Britain's largest paper manufacturer is at Kemsley, north of Sittingbourne, off the A249/B2005 junction. Shepherd Neame Brewery is in Faversham. Brake Bros Ltd is in Ashford. Cummins Power Generation is in Acol, near Manston Airport on the A299, and Pfizer, the largest pharmaceutical company in the world and manufacturer of Anadin, has its European R&D site in Sandwich, next to the River Stour and A256. Hornby Railways is in Margate. AXA PPP is in Tunbridge Wells, and Lamberts Healthcare based at High Brooms are a leading manufacturer of vitamin supplements.

The Mini is made in Cowley


Oxford University Press, Blackwell UK, Electrocomponents and Amey plc are in Oxford as is the BMW plant that builds the Mini. Motoring company Prodrive and Kraft Foods Banbury (Kenco coffee) are based in Banbury along with Ascari. Travelodge UK and W. Lucy & Co., who make switchgear are in Thame, and Kubota UK, the tractor manufacturer on the B4445, is the UK market leader of ride-on (diesel) lawn mowers. Renault F1 is in Enstone. Eurocopter UK is at London Oxford Airport. Agilent Technologies (former Magnex Scientific) make superconducting magnets for NMR applications on the A44 next to the railway at Yarnton. BMW assemble the MINI at Cowley, also the base of Unipart.

The Leadbitter Group (construction) and the UK base of Miele and Sophos are on the Abingdon Science Park. The Joint European Torus is developing fusion power at Culham on a former airfield. Also on the Culham Science Centre at Clifton Hampden is the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority, and the re-usable Skylon (spacecraft) is being developed by Reaction Engines Limited. The Rutherford Appleton Laboratory and Diamond Light Source (built by the Wellcome Trust) are on the Harwell Science and Innovation Campus in Chilton and East Hendred. The science cluster is known as Science Vale UK.[30]

RM plc, Kaspersky Lab UK and Smeg UK are at Milton Park. Rowse Honey is in Wallingford. All parachute training for the RAF and Army takes place at RAF Brize Norton. Siemens Magnet Technology (former Oxford Magnet Technology), the main provider of superconducting magnets for MRI scanners, is in Eynsham; in Witney is Wychwood Brewery (owned by Marstons) which makes Hobgoblin. MacDermid Autotype at Wantage makes precision coated films. Oxford Instruments is in Marcham on the A338. Towards Wiltshire, the Defence Academy of the United Kingdom is in Shrivenham and the Joint Services Command and Staff College is in Watchfield.



Buckinghamshire, Medway and Kent, and Slough have an almost completely selective education system - not just a few grammar schools as other English areas may have - with secondary modern schools as the alternative. Kent has 33 grammar schools, Buckinghamshire 13, Medway 6 and Slough 4. The other areas are comprehensive. In the top thirty schools at A level, it is almost exclusively selective schools; one or two are sixth form colleges. However, the results for each county as a whole are not always directly related to the number of grammar schools, as Kent and Medway perform under average at A-level.

At GCSE, the area in the South East (and England) with the highest results is consistently Buckinghamshire. Berkshire is split into unitary authorities, and Wokingham, Windsor and Slough have the next best GCSE results. All of Berkshire's unitary authorities have results above the England average, with West Berkshire considerably above average. Schools in Surrey and Hampshire also have consistently good GCSE results, and they are above average in Oxfordshire, West Sussex, Kent, Medway, and East Sussex. There are a small number of districts where results are significantly below average including the unitary authorities of Portsmouth (one of the lowest LEAs in the country), the Isle of Wight, Southampton, Brighton, and the districts of Oxford in Oxfordshire, Adur in West Sussex and Hastings in East Sussex.

At A-level, the region gets lower results than it does at GCSE overall. Reading gets the second best A level results in England (after Sutton in London). Also good results are in Buckinghamshire, Hampshire., West Berkshire, and Wokingham. Also above average are Milton Keynes, Brighton, and Oxfordshire.

School children in Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, West Berkshire, Wokingham, Bracknell Forest, Windsor and Maidenhead, and Surrey are most likely to go to university, followed by Hampshire and West Sussex.

There are forty-nine FE colleges in the region. The two main FE colleges are Northbrook College in Sussex and Basingstoke College of Technology in Hampshire. Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshore share an LSC (which fund FE colleges), and Sussex has a combined LSC. The region's LSC office was in Reading, looking after five areas.


The best known university in the region is the University of Oxford, famous for its ornate colleges and its rowing teams on the Thames. It was ranked the fourth best university in the world by the Times Higher Educational Supplement in 2013.[31]

Other well-known universities include:

By total HEFCE funding, the biggest university is the Open University, followed by Oxford University.[32] The Open and Oxford each receive around three times as much funding as any other university in the region, and Oxford receives the largest research grant in England (as of 2009). The University of Southampton gets the third largest amount of funding, with the next largest research grant, one of the largest in England. Other universities with a large research grant are Reading, Sussex and Surrey. Oxford gets twice as much total income (around £700 million) as the next largest, Southampton. Surrey and Reading get the next largest total income.

Oxford and Southampton have the most numbers of students, followed by Brighton. For total students in the region, around 45% are from the region and 35% from other regions. For full-time first degree students in the region, over 35% are from the region, 15% are from London, and 10% each are from the East of England and the South-West; in total, around 70% are from the south of England. Very few are from the North-East or Scotland. Around 35% of the region's native students stay in the region, with 15% going to London and over 10% going to the South-West. In general, for other regions of the UK, the South-East's students are more prepared to study in other regions than those regions' students are prepared to study in the South-East. Once graduated, over 50% stay in the South-East, with 25% going to London, around 5% going to the East of England, and around 10% going to the South-West; around 90% stay in the south of England.

Local media

BBC Research was based until 2010 in Kingswood Warren near Reigate in Surrey on the A217, which was responsible for developing stereo and HD TV broadcasts and teletext

As elsewhere in England, the media landscape in South East England is dominated by national television, radio, newspapers and magazines, most of which are based in London.

  • South Today (BBC South) based on Havelock Road, Southampton.
  • South East Today (BBC South East) based in Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
  • ITV News Meridian (ITV Meridian) which has sub-regions for the South and South East based in Whiteley, near Fareham.
    • N.B. Television coverage for Buckinghamshire is complex and is split three ways depending on location. The western part of the county is in the BBC South and ITV Meridian (South Coast sub-region) Milton Keynes UA is covered by BBC East based in Norwich, with the Look East programme; similarly the ITV region for most of Milton Keynes is ITV Anglia with the ITV News Anglia programme, also from Norwich. The ITV region for the south of the county is ITV London with signals from Crystal Palace - these are supplemented with a number of relay stations such as High Wycombe.

TV signals come from Oxford at Beckley and Stowood in the north of the region, and Rowridge in the south of the region, the two most powerful transmitters in the region, which carry South Today, along with Hannington in north Hampshire, and Midhurst at Easebourne, near Bexleyhill in West Sussex. South East Today, in the east of the region, comes from the lower-powered Heathfield at Heathfield and Waldron, East Sussex off the A267, Dover in Kent, and the even lower-powered Blue Bell Hill at Aylesford on the North Downs. Digital switchover takes place in early 2012.


See also


  1. ^ List of conurbations in the United Kingdom
  2. ^ Neighbourhood Statistics. "". Retrieved 2010-11-28. 
  3. ^ the South East GovOf through time | Population Statistics | Total Population. Retrieved on 2013-07-17.
  4. ^ "Regional Transport Strategy: the National Picture".  
  5. ^ "The LTP Process".  
  6. ^ "Bracknell Forest 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  7. ^ "Brighton and Hove 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  8. ^ "Buckinghamshire 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  9. ^ "East Sussex 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  10. ^ "Hampshire 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  11. ^ "Isle of Wight 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  12. ^ "Kent 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  13. ^ "Medway 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  14. ^ "Milton Keynes 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  15. ^ "Oxfordshire 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  16. ^ "Portsmouth 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  17. ^ "Reading 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  18. ^ "Slough 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  19. ^ "Southampton 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  20. ^ "Surrey 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  21. ^ "Windsor and Maidenhead 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  22. ^ "Wokingham 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  23. ^ "West Sussex 2006-11 Local Transport Plan".  
  24. ^ "Department for Business, Enterprise & Regulatory Reform: Impact of RDA spending, March 2009" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-28. 
  25. ^ "Microsoft Word - Regional GVA FINAL.doc" (PDF). Retrieved 2010-11-28. 
  26. ^ Manufacturing Advisory Service
  27. ^ UKTI South East
  28. ^ Solent Hotel
  29. ^ Langstone Technology Park
  30. ^ Science Vale UK
  31. ^ "World's top 100 universities 2013". 
  32. ^ Recurrent grants for 2009-10 then see Table 1 HEFCE

External links

  • Traveline South East Journey Planner
  • Government Office for the South East
  • Opportunities to tender from SE Local Councils
  • South East England Councils
  • South East England Development Agency
  • Government's list of councils in the South East
  • Tourism Information - Visit South East England
  • Information and History of Southern England
  • South East England Intelligence Network - facts, figures and research on the South East
  • South East England Business Community Directory

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