Hot Spot: Wood Vale, South London - A vale of Victorian value

The south London street answering to the name Wood Vale is a border; in fact a double border. It formally divides the boroughs of Lewisham and Southwark, and it casually separates Dulwich from Forest Hill. It is also the kind of area where one property can be tens of thousands of pounds cheaper than a similar property just one or two streets away.

Wood Vale runs the half-mile from its northern edge at Forest Hill Road to a T-junction with the South Circular, where Lordship Lane becomes London Road. Despite the busy main road, the southern end, closer to Dulwich, is the pricier, with its large houses, some with immense gardens, and its proximity to the Horniman Museum. At the Forest Hill Road end are a park, Brenchley Gardens, Camberwell New Cemetery and council estates.

The Horniman is the kind of museum which you always intend to visit but somehow never get around to doing so. Granted, it is not a British Museum where new treats unfold regardless of the number of visits one makes. But, with its diverse and interesting collections and gardens and rich schedule of events, the Horniman is a good and generous neighbour.

Stephen Smith, of Bushells estate agents, says that some buyers are happy with otherwise small gardens because of the Horniman. "They buy houses that back on to the Horniman nature reserve, and they use the Horniman grounds as their garden and the place to walk the dog. The Horniman brought up the values on the whole road."

"Wood Vale contains many pairs of Victorian houses, some of which remain as houses, but many of which have been converted into flats. In addition, there are flats in bog-standard low-rise 1980s blocks which sell for as little as pounds 55,000 for one bedroom and pounds 65,000 for two bedrooms," Mr Smith says.

Marc Wiehe, of Winkworth, remarks: "Fifteen years ago, if you mentioned Dulwich, people said `where's that?' The atmosphere has changed totally since then. There are plenty of nice restaurants and cafes in the area now, and people come to Lordship Lane for the antique shops."

According to Mr Wiehe: "Wood Vale attracts families from Dulwich when the children leave primary school. There are no good state schools, so they either have to pay for schooling or move. Some move to Wood Vale and get a house twice the size."

Prices near the estates and cemetery are low but, says Mr Wiehe, "on Melford Road and the better roads nearer Lordship Lane, you can expect to pay between pounds 300,000 and pounds 400,000 for houses that have six and even seven bedrooms".

The stretch of roads at the opposite end of the cemetery, closer to Honor Oak, forms another desirable area.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Senior Web Designer / Front End Developer

    £28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast expanding web managem...

    Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

    £22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

    Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

    £22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

    Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

    £40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

    Day In a Page

    No postcode? No vote

    Floating voters

    How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

    By Reason of Insanity

    Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
    Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

    Power dressing is back

    But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
    Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

    Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

    Caves were re-opened to the public
    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

    Vince Cable interview

    'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
    Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

    Promises, promises

    But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
    The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

    The death of a Gaza fisherman

    He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
    Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

    Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
    Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

    The only direction Zayn could go

    We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
    Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

    Spells like teen spirit

    A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
    Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

    British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
    Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

    Licence to offend in the land of the free

    Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
    From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

    From farm to fork in Cornwall

    One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
    Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

    Robert Parker interview

    The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

    We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor