Rayleigh is a market town in the District of Rochford, located between Chelmsford and Southend-on-Sea. Immediately bordered by Hockley, Hullbridge and Rawreth, the town lies 32 miles to the east of central London. The town had a population of 32,150 as of the census 2011.
Rayleigh High Street offers a unique blend of high street retailers, family run businesses, restaurants, coffee shops and bars and pubs, fronted by the two largest venues in the town, Lynx Nightclub and The Pink Toothbrush.
The town also has a leisure centre complete with bowling green, badminton courts, squash courts, dance room, gymnasium, tennis courts, football pitches and a fully licensed bar. The area is home to two skate parks, Rawreth Skate Park near ASDA, and King George's Skate Park, both of which were refurbished in 2011.
The Warehouse Centre opened in 1994. The centre includes a laser quest arena and children’s play area. Nearby is an indoor Go-karting stadium situated on the Brook Road Industrial Estate alongside ‘Base Jump’ one of the U.K’s leading trampoline parks complete with ‘Ninja Warrior’ obstacle course.
Rayleigh has a golf club on the outskirts of the town; The Rayleigh Club, which is situated on the Hullbridge Road to the north of the town.
The area also has two cricket clubs, Rayleigh Fairview Cricket Club who play at Rayleigh Town Sports and Social Club and Rayleigh Cricket Club. The area is also home to numerous football teams. The town is also home to numerous parks and open spaces.
Rayleigh Station is the main hub of travel in and out of the town. Trains here, which begin their journey at Southend Victoria eventually terminate at London Liverpool Street, stopping at stations such as Wickford, Billericay, Brentwood, Shenfield and Stratford along the way. There is also a taxi outside the station.
Rayleigh has an excellent bus service, the town is serviced by Arriva via 4 different buses which connects the area from Shoeburyness to Benfleet. Services in the area are also conducted by First Essex and Regal Busways. First Buses also operate an hourly coach service to Stansted Airport, numbered X30, which makes a stop at Rayleigh Station.
For those travelling by car, Rayleigh is best accessed via the A127, which travels directly through the town at The Rayleigh Weir.
The average value of a property in Rayleigh as of 2016 is £330,371. Detached properties currently average at £429,413. Semi-detached properties currently average at £293,409, whilst the average price of a flat is £189,054. The majority of properties in Rayleigh are family homes consisting of detached houses, semi-detached houses and bungalows.
Rayleigh is serviced by two secondary schools. Sweyne Park and The FitzWimarc School. Rayleigh also has seven primary schools and three pre-schools. Ofsted reports and GCSE results for the local schools can be found online.