Chatham is the urban hub and geographic center of Chatham-Kent, with a population of 43,550. The Thames River flows through the city, providing a beautiful backdrop for the historic downtown area.
Locals enjoy an attractive lifestyle that is not possible in many larger urban centers. With reasonable house prices, urban amenities, and proximity to natural attractions, Chatham is the perfect base for young families, professionals, and retirees. Home to the Chatham Campus of the St Clair College of Applied Arts and Technology and the main campus of the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance, Chatham also welcomes large numbers of college students and medical residents every autumn. Families have the most choice of education options in Chatham with private and public school options across the community.
Several companies have recognized the benefits of doing business in Chatham. Enbridge Gas, Pioneer Hi-Bred Limited (a DuPont Company) and internet/telecommunications company, Teksavvy, have their Canadian head offices in Chatham. From large company branches, to local small business, Chatham is home to employment opportunities across sectors.
Chatham's historic downtown is easily accessible from any location in the city. The main street is home to beautiful boutique shops, restaurants, and cafes, many located in carefully restored turn-of-the-century buildings. The Retro Suites Hotel is a must-see for visitors and is a popular choice for wedding parties. Locals head to the hotel for dinner at the Chilled Cork, grab a coffee and a quick bite next door at the William St Café, or head down the street to Sons of Kent for locally brewed beer.
Also located in the downtown core, the Chatham Capitol Theatre and the Cultural Centre host art exhibits and theatrical productions from local artists to world renowned shows. The Cultural Centre also offers workshops and classes, the Thames Art Gallery, and the Imagination Station for families to enjoy. Numerous festivals and special events take place in historic downtown Chatham, including Retrofest, a popular classic car festival, and FireFest, which showcases the skills of firefighters from across North America.
Chatham is also home to a Galaxy Cinema and Cascades Casino for fun nights out, and various diverse restaurants, cafes, and shops, always a close drive away. There are many recreational activities for families in Chatham. A modern YMCA facility was built in the city in 2011, offering affordable recreational activities for residents of all ages. During the summer months, Chatham residents have access to three outdoor public swimming pools and an impressive splash pad at Kingston Park. There are numerous recreational clubs and teams in Chatham, ranging from recreational leagues for children and adults to competitive travel teams.