Crossrail puts Abbey Wood on the regeneration fast track with two new housing zones
Regeneration plans are underway in Abbey Wood, in preparation for Crossrail's arrival in 2018 - bringing 12 fast trains an hour to central London. It's no wonder buyers are snapping up the good-value period houses near the station...
Investing in green: Abbey Wood has recently been awarded £3.5 million from the Heritage Lottery Find for improvements. Images: Daniel Lynch.
When Crossrail opens in December 2018, Abbey Wood will have up to 12 fast trains an hour, taking commuters into central London in just 25 minutes and to Heathrow in 51 minutes.
The prospect has sent the district into a spin with a raft of regeneration plans. Mayor Boris Johnson has promised an £80 million financial package for two new housing zones. The two governing councils, Greenwich and Bexley, are working with housing association Peabody to launch 3,000 new homes to be built over the next 10 years, many of which will be “affordable”.
Abbey Wood takes its name from Lesnes Abbey Woods that once belonged to the monks of Lesnes Abbey, founded in 1178, and lies 13 miles south-east of central London with Woolwich to the west, Thamesmead and the Thames to the north, Erith to the east and Welling to the south.
It has rows of Victorian terrace houses, Thirties semis and more modern two- and three-bedroom houses. It is also home to Thamesmead South, the love-it-or-loathe-it brutalist estate of tower blocks and maisonettes built around a large lake that became the dystopian home of nihilistic Alex and his droogs in Stanley Kubrick’s controversial film from 1971, A Clockwork Orange.
Parts of the estate close to the lake have now been demolished and Peabody housing association is consulting residents on the future of the other blocks. Nothing has been ruled in or out at this stage, although Peabody hopes to create a new shopping street along bleak Harrow Manor Way and a new lateral park through the estate connecting Lesnes Abbey Woods with Crossness on the Thames.
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What there is to buy in Abbey Wood Abbey Wood has a mix of homes, from the popular Victorian terrace houses in the grid of streets south of the train station — on the site of a former Co-operative farm and known locally as the Co-op Estate — to semi-detached Thirties houses further south of the town centre, which estate agents now call Upper Abbey Wood.
There are also modern former council terrace houses in the area north of the train station and west of Harrow Manor Way, to modern flats in gated developments near the station. four-bedroom semi-detached home is located between Abbey Wood and Bexleyheath
South Thamesmead has spacious right-to-buy flats and maisonettes in imposing concrete blocks that attract cash buyers, as they are difficult to mortgage.
Lee Ingram, of local estate agents Hunters, says two-bedroom Victorian houses on the Co-op Estate sell for about £300,000 and three- bedroom houses for about £350,000. A two-bedroom former council house is about £270,000 and one with three bedrooms will cost up to £300,000. This three-bedroom house in the Co-op Estate in Crumpsall Street is for sale for £375,000.
South Thamesmead is known for its Brutalist architecture. A four-bedroom maisonette in Lensbury Way is for sale for £199,999. However, it may not be possible to get a mortgage as the future of the estate is uncertain.
Average prices: buying houses and flats in Abbey Wood Two-bedroom flat: £248,000 Two-bedroom house: £250,000 Three-bedroom house: £326,000 Source: www.zoopla.co.uk