I've been a mum in Orpington for the past 16 years! We live here for the easy-ish commute and the fact it's the right side of London for visiting family. I've made friends here through the NCT and their coffee mornings. Think they still do their drop in group too. Lots of local toddler groups in church halls. Libraries have good activities - baby bounce song time and toddler stay and play sessions. And there are all the pay-termly activities like Tumble Tots, Caterpillar music and Microsport. Orpington has leisure centre with adult and separate toddler pool. Ace pirate themed soft play area as well. And creche so you can go to gym. High street OK for everyday shops - Boots, Smiths, Woolies etc. Town centre Sainsburys, and Tesco being built. Nugent shopping centre just on edge of town has Mothercare, Debenhams Desire, Next, M and s and more. Busy at weekends but great during the week for a wander and coffee. There are good local playgrounds. High Elms Country park has lawned areas for running around, walks in the woods and a nature centre and cafe. Feels like the country only 10 minutes drive from Orp. Polhill garden centre also deserves a mention - plenty of indoor stuff on a rainy day (pets, fish, books, toys) and a cafe with small outdoor play area. Haven't used nurseries or childminder - lucky enough to have family local.