Kingston upon Thames is the principal settlement of the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames in southwest London. It was the ancient market town where Saxon kings were crowned and is now situated 10 miles (16.1 km) south west of Charing Cross. It is one of the major metropolitan centres identified in the London Plan. Though it now lies outside the borders of the County of Surrey, Kingston remains the location of the administrative headquarters of Surrey County Council.
Kingston Bridge is a road bridge at Kingston upon Thames in London, England, carrying the A308 across the River Thames. It joins the town centre of Kingston in the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames, to Hampton Court Park, Bushy Park, and the village of Hampton Wick in the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames. As of 2005[update], it carries approximately 50,000 vehicles per day with up to 2,000 vehicles per hour in each direction during peak times.
Kingston Bridge is on the reach above Teddington Lock and close to and downstream of the mouth of the Hogsmill River, a minor tributary of the Thames. It is on the route of the Thames Path and is the end point for the Thames Down Link long distance footpath from Box Hill station.
Kingston Bridge was the only crossing of the river between London Bridge and Staines Bridge until Putney Bridge was opened in 1729, with a reference in 1318 describing it as in a dangerous condition. This contributed greatly to Kingston's success as a medieval market town. According to John Leland, writing in under the Tudors there was a bridge in Saxon times. He wrote "And yn the old tyme the commune saying ys that the bridge where the commun passage was over the Tamise was lower on the ryver then it is now. And when men began the new town in the Saxons tymes they toke from the very clive of Comeparke (cliff of Coombe Park) side to build on the Tamise side; and sette a new bridge hard by the same." Leland refers to a contemporary bridge and to an older wooden bridge that had existed at Kingston since the 13th century. This was downstream of the present bridge where Old Bridge Street at Hampton Wick used to be matched by an Old Bridge Street on the Kingston side - the former Saxon bridge being further downstream.