Tenterden became prosperous because of the large amount of sheep in the area. After Edward the 111 Banned the export of unwashed wool in 1331, he encouraged Flemish weavers to bring their weaving and dying skills to England. After many of them settled in the area, Tenterden soon became an important centre for the manufacture of broadcloth.

The wide tree-lined verges that border the High Street are lined with medieval buildings that hide their age behind weather boarded or tiled Georgian facades. Tenterden serves many of the surrounding towns and villages with a wide variety of restaurants, individual fashion shops and stores including many of the multiple outlets:- Waitrose,Tesco and a weekly food market too.

There is a local bus route between Rye and Ashford connecting with the rail services to London and Brighton. There are many schools in the area including, Homewood school and sixth form centre.