Medway the place
In Medway you are walking in the footsteps of a rich military and maritime heritage. From Chatham and its Historic Dockyard to the second oldest Cathedral in England at Rochester.
And why not catch up with our castles, find our forts and chill along our coastline?
At the heart of the Thames Gateway
Medway is only 30 miles from central London. It's a vibrant, thriving destination offering a rich cultural heritage as well as a thriving economy.
Medway takes its name from the magnificent river that flows through it. It's made up of five towns including Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham, Rainham and Strood.
Medway’s economy is worth £4.8 billion, with a growth rate ahead of the rest of the UK. The projected growth in Medway’s economy is helped by Medway’s geographical position, benefiting from comprehensive transport links within the UK and Europe.
Rich heritage, great future
Medway enjoys a rich heritage, diverse population, varied landscapes and a promising future with opportunities for growth and development. It is the combination of these elements that makes Medway a unique and special place to live, work and visit.
Medway has a focus on high value technology and knowledge intensive businesses making it a leading centre for innovation in the south-east. Our new business growth rate exceeds both the national and south-east averages, creating great employment opportunities for local people.
With 4 university campuses, 12,000 students and successful digital businesses, we are developing our creative and cultural gene.
We're one of the south-east’s most dynamic places to live, work, learn and visit
This comes from its unique combination of location, rich history, a vibrant cultural scene, great amenities and continued progress.
Medway enjoys a stunning natural setting
Winding its way between the hills of the downs and through Medway, the River Medway fans into a wide estuary and marshes that link to the River Thames. These varied views accompany people as they journey around the area.
The marshes and estuaries are of global importance and support around 300,000 wintering wetland birds, which feed on Medway’s mudflats and saltings.
Medway has the equivalent of 13.3 Hyde Parks, from children’s play areas to reserves you can lose yourself in. We have seven national Green Flag Award sites - it’s no wonder Medway’s green spaces are enjoyed by more than 1.5 million visitors yearly.
State-of-the-art sports facilities
With so much on offer from Medway’s leisure scene, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Medway is proud of its growing reputation as a sporting centre of international repute. Medway Park is Medway's £11 million centre of sporting excellence.
The annual programme of national and international events in sports have included handball, badminton, basketball, judo, fencing, table tennis, and wheelchair rugby.
If you prefer to watch the professionals, Medway is home to Kent’s only professional football club, Gillingham FC, as well as the Invicta Dynamos ice hockey team.
Medway has an extensive range of sporting facilities, with six council sports centres and many private gyms. There is also Chatham Ski and Snowboard Centre, outdoor activities at Arethusa Venture Centre and karting at nearby Buckmore Park international outdoor track, not forgetting Holcombe Hockey Club.
And of course, there is also the river. Home to a range of watersports clubs, it plays host to sailing regattas and an annual River Festival.
National retailers and enchanting independents
Shoppers will find leading national retailers in Chatham, enchanting independents and a monthly farmers’ market in Rochester. We have a variety of indoor shopping at Hempstead Valley Shopping Centre and Dockside Outlet Centre at Chatham Maritime.
It’s quick and easy to get to Bluewater, the most innovative and exciting shopping and leisure destination in Europe. The new Westfield Stratford City shopping centre just 30 minutes away by train.
Take a culinary trip around the world with Medway’s vast array of restaurants and bars. Dine alfresco on Rochester’s historic high street or waterside at Chatham Maritime. Or seek out a cosy traditional pub with locally-brewed ales and home cooked favourites.
Renowned for arts, festivals and events
Medway’s spring festivals and events will not go ahead this year due to the ongoing coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
We usually have a rich diverse calendar of events, including:
- Rochester Castle concerts
- Dickens Festival
- Sweeps Festival
- English Festival
- River Festival
- Armed Forces Day
- Will Adams Festival
Rochester Art Gallery features a changing programme of exciting contemporary visual art. We hold 4 exhibitions every year which showcase the work of local, regional and international artists.
The River Medway
The river is the beating heart of Medway.
Today the River Medway is the focal point for regeneration in Medway with stunning residential, leisure and business developments. We’re making the most of the river for leisure and tourism while caring for our important wetlands.
Our river has been the catalyst for Medway’s regeneration.
We are a place of history but very much a place of tomorrow.
Join our journey by becoming a Medway Champion.