The largest of London's boroughs by population, Croydon lies at the southern point of outer London and has the town of Croydon at its heart. Originally described as a small market town in the Domesday Book, nowadays Croydon is a major transport, cultural and business centre with an ever-expanding population, much of which was on the back of the now closed Croydon Airport, originally London's only airport. When this opened oin 1915, it drew investment and business into the centre, but was later closed due to the lack of potential for expansion, and replaced in 1959 by Heathrow. Investment and the cultural momentum continue however with the Council's Croydon Vision 2020 programme which is expected to attract more business and cultural events to the Borough as it aims to establish Croydon as London's third city behind the City of Westminster and the City of London.
The Borough of Croydon is generally seen as being well-balanced, with green open spaces, successful financial institutions and business hubs and a thriving arts scene. There are over 120 parks and open spaces in Croydon, from formal gardens to shrub- and woodland and hills and rivers that are spread out across the borough making up much of its landscape. Despite having so much open countryside on its doorstep, it takes just 20 minutes to travel by train into central London and is only an easy journey from the popular seaside resort of Brighton, which helps explain why it has become such a popular place to live!