Sydenham Area Guide
Sydenham is very well connected and a short hop (15 minutes) into Central London. Three stations, Sydenham, Sydenham Hill and Lower Sydenham take you to London Bridge, Victoria, Waterloo, Charing Cross and Cannon Street. You can also access Canada Water, Shadwell, Whitechapel, Shoreditch and Islington from Sydenham Overground station. Bus routes link the area to other destinations in Central and South London.
Sydenham grew from a collection of cottages to a popular neighbourhood in the early 19th century with the arrival of the railway. Now a large, bustling town, its history means there’s a huge variety of housing stock, from Victorian terraces and Edwardian villas to post war houses and flats.
Local amenities serve you well; good cafés, popular with mums during the day and families at the weekends, some extremely good restaurants, including Britain’s best takeaway (Millennium Tandoori, 2013) and a very fine pub in The Dolphin. Visit Trattoria Raffaele for tasty Italian fare, 161 Food + Drink for organic wines, and award-winning bookshop and cultural hub Kirkdale Bookshop for all your literary needs! Sydenham Art Festival has been running since 2009 and now encompasses music, theatre, dance, art and film, at venues indoors and out. With a number of independent shops selling everything from baked goods to furniture, and a selection of banks and supermarkets, Sydenham’s high street proves extremely convenient.
Eliot Bank and Haseltine are two of many good primary schools (Eliot Bank achieving Ofsted’s ‘Outstanding’ classification) . Sydenham School for girls and Forest Hill School for boys are local secondary favourites. Sydenham High School is the independent girls’ option and the nearby mixed Harris City Academy Crystal Palace is highly regarded. In neighbouring Forest Hill the LIFE school (Learn in a Friendly Environment) provides education, support and guidance to pupils at risk of being excluded from mainstream education.
It has to be the parks - three in the vicinity, two of which are Green Flag Awarded, and many more in surrounding areas. Mayow Park offers the lovely Brown & Green Café as well as a playground, tennis courts, table tennis and plenty of space for sports and relaxing. The woodland at Sydenham Hill Wood and Cox’s Walk is a good spot for birdwatchers (you may see woodpeckers) and the Wood House is a gastropub with a country-feel and fantastic beer garden. The always-popular Wells Park has an active spring in the grounds, with a splash park much-loved by children throughout the Summer months. Both the nature reserve of Dacres Wood and Crystal Palace Park and its famous dinosaurs are just a short distance away.
Facts about Sydenham (once known as Shippenham):
- Sydenham Hill was once the site of the Great North Wood, where former Kings of England would indulge in hunting deer and boar.
- Eleanor Marx, daughter of Karl Marx, purchased her house at Sydenham’s 7 Jews Walk in 1895.
- St Bartholomew’s Church is the focal point in Camille Pissarro’s painting ‘The Avenue, Sydenham’, which is now housed in the National Gallery.
- Population: In the last census the population of Sydenham was 17,377 with a median age of 35.
- Most of the sales in Sydenham over the past year were flats which on average sold for £378,555. Terraced properties had an average sold price of £664,807 and semi-detached properties averaged at £785,161. *Source: Rightmove