The heart of the village was, and still is, along the greensand ridge, today the A25 road from Reigate to Oxted. The southern toe was taken up by the sub-manors of Woolborough and Hathersham. The fulan broc, “the marshy brook”, is the northern boundary with Merstham, and was the boundary in a charter of 942. Nutfield extends seven miles from north to south and barely two miles east to west.
The manor was listed in the Domesday Book in 1086, when it already had a church. The names of some 20th century farms come from the surnames of taxpayers listed in the Lay Subsidy Return of 1332. This historical connection is interesting because the people with those surnames disappeared from the parish soon after the Black Death (1348-1350).
Click here to see the catalogue of the St Peter and St Paul, Nutfield, Parish Records and Nutfield, Civil Parish Records (1558-1969) held at the Surrey History Centre.
John Hassell and Edward Hassell painted various views of St Peter and St Paul between 1821-1828. Use this link to see some examples.
Nutfield was essentially a farming community, although fuller’s earth was dug on a small scale, becoming a major industry in the 20th century. The deposits have now been worked out. Some farmers had a secondary occupation, particularly in weaving and dyeing.
A railway was built through the parish in the 1840s, but had little effect until a station was opened at Nutfield in 1884. Sir Henry Edwards, a developer working hand-in-glove with the South Eastern Railway, bought up all the key development sites north and south of the station. A new village, South Nutfield, quickly emerged with shops, pub and church. A number of great mansions were built on the ridge by successful professionals and businessmen, all now either in multi-occupation, in business use, or demolished.
An aerodrome opened in the 1930s as an overspill from Croydon Airport. It was taken over by the RAF in World War II. It still exists as Redhill Aerodrome, mainly for private flying, and a certain amount of commerce has grown up around the airfield entrance.
Nutfield is today a polyfocal parish, with the old village astride the ridge of the greensand, the principal community clustered around the station at South Nutfield, and a third community surrounding the 19 acres of Nutfield Marsh at the foot of the dip slope of the greensand.
Today most of the inhabitants earn their living in the city of London, or in the nearby towns of Crawley, Reigate and Redhill, and Croydon, or at Gatwick Airport. Despite being a commuter village, Nutfield has many clubs and societies, and has a vibrant social life.