About the Village

Pratts Bottom is a village in the London Borough of Bromley, on the border with Kent. It nestles in the Green Belt, on the dip slope of the North Downs, and oozes with history. Often the butt of jokes, the village is named after the Pratt family who lived in the valley from the 14th century. Until the 1830s the village was on the toll road from London to Hastings and was the haunt of smugglers and highwaymen.

27 thoughts on “About the Village

  1. Hi Rebecca
    Pratts Bottom is a very nice place to live, even for retired people like myself.
    Please tell me more about yourself and I can give you more information for your homework.
    Best wishes

  2. Hi Rebecca
    It’s nice to know you are doing a school project on Pratts Bottom. You should find lots of information on the website, especially on the History page. There is a book about the village written by Sue Short, who may be happy to help you. In 1972 a schoolgirl called Judith Hook wrote a very good project called “Pratts Bottom: an English Village” which you can find in the local studies section of Bromley Library.
    Best wishes and good luck with your project
    Tony Lavelle, Webmaster

  3. Hi Al and Beth, with your last name Pratts Bottom would definitely be the right place for you! We have lots of history (Chelsfield history website coming soon), an active dramatic society (do you like pantos?) and many craft groups, with a new craft fair just announced. Tony

  4. You may be right that your branch of the Pratt family hails from our village but the surname seems to come from several parts of England, especially Kent, and they may not all be related.

    Before the 1930s, Pratts Bottom was part of Chelsfield parish in Kent. Births, deaths and marriages would be recorded in the Chelsfield registers.

    How far back have you been able to trace your family so far?

    Good luck in your research!

    • Well, I’ve only gotten as far back as mid 1800’s,& only with my Sicilian/English branch. I myself am a second generation Italian American on dad’s side (grandmother,while born in US, had two Sicilian immigrant parents), & on mom’s side mystery generation Irish. My family tree is comprised of Italian, Irish, Scottish,French, English,German. And I believe Pratt is also found in Germany too. Give me a few days to get some things out of the way,& I’ll dive head on into my Ancestry account, & email you directly instead of from here with more info.

  5. What a lively website with comments/questions from across the community and overseas, and interesting answers! I come from Magpie Bottom in the South West and chanced on Pratt’s Bottom for the first time today. Well done – your site is interesting.

  6. Moving to Pratt’s Bottom shortly (Turnpike Drive), if all goes to plan. Have mobility problems and don’t drive, is there anything to do in the area that’s easy to access and not expensive. Unable to work due to multiple health problems.

    • Hi Andrea, welcome to Pratts Bottom! There are many fun and worthwhile things to do in PB. Have a look at the Contacts page on the website for just some of the clubs and societies that thrive in the village. Failing that you are close to the bus stops for services to Orpington and Bromley. Tony

  7. I’m researching charmwood farm in pratts bottom of anyone knows anything past and present about the building or people I would be interested.has anyone lived there had any experience of living there.It doesn’t matter if it’s recent or past any history. many thanks.

  8. Lovely local website. My ancestor Cornelius March Payne married Charlotte Pratt in the main Church in Bromley, Kent. Her death cert in Glasgow gives her mother as Elizabeth Pratt nee Woolley, her father unknown by informant. A marriage of Elizabeth Woolley to one William Pratt in St. John’s Horsley down seems likely the right one. All this in late 1700 into first half of 1800s. I would love it to be that my ancestor William came from the family in Pratts Bottom, why? Well for 50 years have lived just down the road in Green st Green Orpington. Before that lived in the Midlands, Dorset Lagunillas Venezuela and Trinidad West Indies. But born pre ww2 in Earls Court London. Seems I travelled but so did my ancestors!

    • Geoff Copus, the expert on Chelsfield (incl PB) history, says he will be happy to advise you on this but there doesn’t seem to be a PB connection.

  9. I’m interested in visiting Pratts Bottom purely because of the place name (I am sorry!).

    I live near New Addington and I know there are buses to Croydon, Orpington and Bromley near me. I know the latter two are not far from Pratts Bottom.

    What public transport routes would you suggest (I don’t know how to drive or have a license)?

    Many thanks

    • Hi Emma, There are two bus services to Pratts Bottom. The Arriva 402 leaves Bromley North on the hour and takes about 30 minutes and the R5/10 does a loop starting and finishing at Orpington Station in alternating directions. From your place you might be best to take the 358 to Orpington and get off at Green Street Green, then walk 20 minutes or catch one of the two services I mentioned above. Best to use the TfL journey planner to be sure. Hope that helps. Tony

    • The Pratt family farmed the valley hundreds of years ago. dry valleys in the chalk downlands of southern England are often called “bottoms”. My house was the Pratt farmhouse before the village grew around it.

  10. I live in the USA. My daughter had a school project where she had to trace her family history back several generations. We found that in the 1800’s our Jackson ancestors left Pratts to come to America. Now we would like to travel back to visit. Is there any chance that we could find maps or information on places they would have frequented while they lived there?

  11. Hello,
    Can you tell me if there is a Christmas Fair this year? If so, when is it and how does one book a table?
    Many thanks.

  12. Bit of an odd request, does anyone know of a reliable mobile hairdresser who covers the Pratt’s Bottom area. My currently housebound mother is desperate to get her hair done.

    • Andrea, you’re more likely to get an answer to this on Facebook. there are several FB groups/pages dedicated to Pratts Bottom.

  13. Does anyone remember Angela and Tony Smith (probably during 50s-60’s) – Angela assisted her father, Frederick, in building a house there?

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