Brockley, not East Dulwich

The Evening Standard's Homes and Property section today quotes Brockley KFH's Simon Smith, as this week's 'Property Insider'. He says:

“In the past six months there has been a baby-boom in Brockley with plenty of couples starting families and having second babies, so the demand for houses is the highest I have seen it. People are following friends that have already moved to the area and there are prams and buggies everywhere. Brockley could potentially be the next East Dulwich.”

As the regular rows about babies in local cafes attest, there is a baby-boom going on in the area, as we've been pointing out for at least two years, but the insofar as the "new East Dulwich" line means anything at all, we think it's misguided. Brockley and East Dulwich are fundamentally different for the following reasons:

1. East Dulwich is next to Dulwich. Brockley is next to New Cross and Deptford.

2. East Dulwich has relatively rubbish public transport connections. Brockley is well blessed.

3. East Dulwich has a long, reasonably cohesive high street, with lots of room for all kinds of shops and businesses. Brockley Road is fragmented, with relatively few units until you get to Crofton Park. Even this stretch is comparatively compact.

The combination of the extensive high street and poor links means that East Dulwich is more likely to attract people who want to potter with pushchairs, Brockley more likely to attract the unencumbered.

4. Most importantly, the housing stock is very different. East Dulwich is full of small terraced houses, perfect for  (high priced) starter homes for young families. Brockley has some of those houses, mostly on the west side and in Crofton Park, but has lots more large houses which have become sub-divided. There's loads of stuff to buy in East Dulwich, relatively little in Brockley. Many young families looking for a starter home in Brockley give up and look elsewhere.

As a result, of these differences, we expect Brockley's population to remain more diverse and less child-laden and its high street less of a destination.

43 comments:

Shame said...

Did anyone else see ES magazine top reasons to love south london (or some such) on Friday? Rivoli took no.3 and Brockley market was represented.

Shame said...

Did anyone else see ES magazine top reasons to love south london (or some such) on Friday? Rivoli took no.3 and Brockley market was represented.

Tressilliana said...

This article:

http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/lifestyle/london-life/50-reasons-to-love-south-london-7621730.html

One Tree Hill is in there too, and so is the East London Line.

Headhunter said...

I don't think you're correct in your analysis of the housing stock in Brockley. I never understand why people think of Brockley as full of flats. If we go with Brockley Central's broader inclusion of St Johns, New Cross, Crofton Park etc as part of the wider area, then we are very well blessed with undivided, 2 and 3 bed housing stock. There are whole streets of undivided terraces and in fact as far as sub divided houses/flats go, there's only really Brockley conservation area. Otherwise it's row upon row of Victorian terraced housing, perfect for small, new families.

I don't have kids myself so I don't know much about the schools in the area but aren't there some very decent state schools in the area like the Stillness School and Myatt Garden School? Sounds to me like Brockley is ripe for new families.

The other points are pretty accurate, although Brockley, at least north Brockley and St Johns are as close to Greenwich as East Dulwich is to Dulwich/Dulwich Village.

Headhunter said...

"Houses within the conservation area (average price £600,000) are ‘hot property’ regardless of the style of property, be it Victorian or Edwardian, in roads such as Hazeldon Road, Holdenby Road, Braxfield Road, Kneller Road, Whitbread Road, and Comerford Road.

Within close proximity of the Conservation area, popular roads include Manor Avenue, St Margarets Road, Drake Road and Hillyfields Crescent, where properties overlook the park. There is a mixture of conversions, mid-terraced houses and detached properties available"

Whoever wrote that clearly doesn't know the area... Last time I looked Hazeldon Rd, Braxfield Rd, Kneller Rd, Whitbread Rd and Comerford Rd were not in the conservation area and Manor Ave, St Margerets Rd, Drake Rd etc are IN the consveration area rather than in CLOSE PROXIMITY!

KFH said...

Everyone knows Brockley is the new East Dulwich really. Also, Catford is the new New Cross which is the new Deptford which is the new Peckham.

Calabrese said...

God i Love Broccoli

Transpontine said...

There's also some bogus demography at work here. Is it really true that there has been a baby boom in the last 6 months? Er no, the figures for live births in the last 6 months haven't been published yet.

It is true that across SE London as a whole the birth rate has raised steadily over the last 10 years. It also seems to be true that the demand for primary school places is increasing, which may suggest that people who have babies are now more likely to stay local whereas in the past perhaps more might have had babies then moved out of the area. Whether that's a vote of confidence in their local communities and schools, or recession-related reasons (they can't afford to move) is a moot point.

Anonymous said...

Go away people! Pushing our house prices up - this is local place - I'm going to start weaving a wicker man now

Anonymous said...

That KFH manager lives in Manor Avenue - so he should have known it was in the Conservation Area!

Anonymous said...

Another factor is that Brockley has more of an artistic undercurrent, by virtue of its proximity to Goldsmiths, which means it has more in common with Deptford and New Cross. East Dulwich doesn't really have that - it seems to me like a more straight-up middle class utopia, in the same style of Upper Street and suchlike...

Headhunter said...

To be fair on the KFH guy, I think it's the journalist who has not done his homework for the article with regard to the geography of the conservation area. He's not quoting the KFH guy at that point...

Anonymous said...

re headline
no Brockley is the latest place that people who want to move to e, dulwich but cant afford to move to instead. that is what the constant tone of dissatisfaction in the comments is. cheer up, your here now, lets make the most of it

NAT said...

East Dulwich imported Anthony Gormley from Peckham which it also adjoins, for its Bellenden Road bollard designs.

Is there anything else that makes it in any way remarkable?

Tamsin said...

Interesting - thank you, Nick. (And more on the ES 50 reasons to love South London on the SECentral blog with people adding more. I don't necessarily think it is in order of merit - seems a bit too random for that.)

Average Renter said...

I just realised that I'll never be able to buy in London. Time to visit Newcastle.

Anonymous said...

Has anyone noticed how quiet the tube has been this week now all the little Mungos are on there holidays with their trendy parents?

Can we have this all the time, please?

DJ said...

I wish you'd give us a holiday from your boring 'Mungo' bollocks.

b. said...

It's called the 'school holidays' Anonymous. All kids get them, not just the ones with the 'trendy' parents that clearly make you feel so inadequate.

The Daily Mail said...

Excessive use of the word mungo, mung, trendy, honest fare and twee causes cancer.

recovering granola said...

Back in my day, we used to call them 'granolas'.

Anonymous said...

in my day 'yoguhrt weaver' was popular - but that was in reference to a more hippy outlook (placenta hors d'oeuvres anyone?)

Anonymous said...

Yurt dwellers (one weekend a year, mind)

Anonymous said...

The journalist said "could this potentially be the next East Dulwich" - didn't actually say it was!

Why can't we be happy that ES have given us more exposure & said good things about us, esp in the lead up to things such as Brockley Maxx Festival.

Don't think that those who have never heard of Brockley are going to give a monkeys that Kneller Rd etc are not in conservation and Manor Road is!

Annoying Pedant said...

They might about Manor Ave though...

Headhunter said...

Whether they care or not is irrelevant, it's just sloppy, ill informed journalism. I couldn't give a crap about football and it makes no difference to me if the papers report that the queen has just been signed up to play for Arsenal in goal, but it's not the truth and whether I care or not is not relevant...

TheManorMilitia said...

What's this about Manor Avenue not being in the conservation area?

The conservation area started IN Manor Avenue...

Call out the militia!

Jack said...

The truth? YOU CAN'T HANDLE THE TRUTH!

Lord of the Manor said...

I agree we should be happy that ES has gone to the trouble of doing some research into our area.

The journo is just trying to relate to the wider London readership that Brockley could be considered a trendy and vibrant area, in the same way East Dulwich is viewed.
I think you're overdoing the point by going into demographics, types of dwelling.. etc

In any case, the conservation area of Brockley is far more picturesque than East Dulwich, and one of the best examples of preserved Victorian townhouses and villas anywhere in London.

Anonymous said...

Wish we had more nice shops like East Dulwich ... if you changed the shops around Brockley Cross to nice ones we'd have just as many I reckon ...

Anonymous said...

I think Nick is totally right. It is definitely harder to get a family home in the Conservation Area of Brockley than in East Dulwich because of their vast size. The average house price in the Constipation Area would def be more than East Dulwich. Perhaps the area would become more affordable if Lewisham Council released some of the multi-million pound properties.

Anonymous said...

But Brockley doesn't have any decent restaurants or shops.

Anonymous said...

I agree with the analysis. We looked for a house in Brockley (wanted conservation area or ladywell i.e. near hilly fields) for 2 years and ended up in East dulwich. So few places became available during that time and the scarcity kept the prices inflated. We actually got a better deal in ED and are close to two parks (dulwich park and rye park) and the shops on Lordship lane. The only downside is the poor transport links but we drive to work anyway.

Headhunter said...

If you specifically want a house, a full house, in the conservation area, then yes, there is very limited supply, however the conservation area is a small part of "greater Brockley". If we include Ladywell, St Johns even the edges of Nunhead then this area has a better stock of undivided 2-3 bedroom houses at "cheap" prices than any other part of London. There are streets and streets of undivided houses around Ladywell, Nunhead, St Johns, even the west side of Brockley station.... Scarcity my ass!

Anonymous said...

You forgot to metion that the houses in East Dulwich are all private, in Brockley the majority of the victorian houses are Council owned and destined to social lettings or hostels... hence no property for sale.

Headhunter said...

I think majority is an exaggeration....

Moi said...

Anon 13.54, I'm surprised you really couldn't find anything - if you were prepared to go to the other side of Hilly Fields as you say, i.e. out of the conservation area and into SE13 but closer to the park than many conservation area properties and within easier reach of Lewisham station (the useful one) as well as St Johns and Ladywell - and of course Brockley stations, you could have found a house on roads like Cliffview/Shell/Brookbank/Overcliff etc for about £350k for a large 3 bed. Surely ED costs more?

Tressilliana said...

The houses in ED are not all private. No idea how much social housing there is in Brockley - owned by housing associations or the successor to Lewisham Council - I don't think the council owns property directly any more, does it? However, I doubt it's anything approaching even 50% of the total housing stock, judging by the very limited number of dwellings round here I know about.

Anonymous said...

There are plenty of lovely houses in SE4 if you're not snobby about the one you choose being Victorian.

Just sayin'.

Anonymous said...

I love all this postcode snobbery. I grew up in Brockley and East Dulwich didn't exist it was Peckham. Barry road was known as the mad mile! I cannot believe that anyone has been forced to go to E.Dulwich because they couldn't find an affordable house in Brockley. Brockley is greater than the Conservation Area, in which I was born but it wasn't conservation then! We don't have the shops but then you would need a large disposable income to shop in E.Dulwich. There have always been lots of buggies in Brockley, they just weren't welcome before 15yrs ago in any of the local establishments. I love brockley and hope that it doesnt turn into an E.Dulwich suburb

Anonymous said...

That particular stable door was left open quite a few years ago I think. Most of the people who read this blog are only here because they couldn't afford where they really want to be. They over-compensate by declaring how wonderful the place is and constantly banging on about ways it can be turned into the place they would prefer to be. Happily the embourgeoisment of slummy London suburbs is a general phenomena. Their ragged little dreams will all come true, eventually.

Anonymous said...

What Moi said! We were very happy to escape our flat in ED for a house just the other side of the park in SE13. We didn't see the point in mortgaging ourselves to the hilt to live in a shoebox miles from the station. Here we've got space, a small(er) mortgage, great transport links, peace and quiet (relative to the madness of living on North Cross Road). Oh and 2 teenies. ED is over rated.

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