The Chalybeate Spring was a fortuitous find by the young nobleman, Dudley Lord North – 3rd Baron North, who noticed the reddish brown waters of the Spring foaming slightly from the ground.
Lord North had spent several days at the Abergavenny Estate at nearby Eridge recuperating and was returning on horseback to London.
Feeling a bit the worse for wear from heavy drinking and merrymaking, Lord North drank the water to quench his thirst.
Feeling much rejuvenated from drinking the cool iron-rich spring water, he declared it to be health-giving to all his friends and acquaintances.
The news of the Spring and its exceptional properties circulated and noble visitors from London and elsewhere flocked to the resulting hamlet springing up alongside the natural spa.
Since it wasn’t far from Tonbridge (originally spelled Tunbridge), already a town, it later became known as Tunbridge Wells.