Sutton Area Guide
Sutton In General
Since the arrival of trains and the industrial revolution, Sutton, like many outlying towns around London, has grown considerably in both size and popularity.
Boasting that is it London’s sixth most important retail centre, Sutton has continuously undergone change and development over the years and yet it retains a charming mix of architecture indicating a consistent organic growth that should be a positive signal to potential residents and investors as the town offers a healthy mix of local commerce, residential buildings and excellent transport links. This encourages a vibrant economy seven days a week from office workers Monday to Friday and residents and visitors at weekends.
Such stability has seen a significant growth in the property market in particular residential lettings and landlords are benefitting from ever- increasing returns on their investment.
Residential Development in Sutton (A Short History)
Being on the London to Brighton Turnpike road from 1755, Sutton was always a prosperous village with a number of coaching inns, Churches, cottages and land-owners larger homes. Providing a 9am breakfast stop for coaches that had departed the capital at 7am. However Sutton’s key development was with the advent of the railways with many of the period residential buildings in the area being mid-Victorian with another mini residential boom in the Edwardian period. However one significant Georgian building remains, Sutton Lodge, once believed to have been a discreet love-nest for King George IV and his mistresses.
Sutton today has a number of conservation areas protecting its heritage and this has helped preserve the eclectic architecture. This variety of styles resulted from no one major developer owning land and instead a number of smaller developers built up areas to their own individual tastes.
Unlike other areas of London, Sutton escaped significant bomb damage and therefore did not need the slum clearances or rapid expansion of other suburbs, however as Sutton grew so did it’s footprint and housing styles typical of every era can be seen right up to the contemporary ‘docklands style’ Lamborne apartments .The wide range of houses and apartments means that Sutton appeals to tenant working in the area, first time buyers, families and even retirees. Its amenities, transport links, good schools and local commerce generating a sustained, self-perpetuating housing market.
Dining, Shopping & Relaxing in Sutton
As an appointed Business Improvement District (BID) Sutton town centre has benefitted from sustained marketing and support to draw in retailers, restaurants and more. With two shopping centres and a main high street Sutton has long been a retail destination that boasts familiar names in a pleasant town centre environment rather than out of town retail park, though Sutton does also have this!
With fairly distinct quarters Sutton can be split into business retail and residential districts all within easy reach of each of other and each having their own vibrancy from bustling pubs to intimate restaurants and some charming independent shops that are worth seeking out.
Culturally, Sutton offers plenty of leisure activities including the Secombe Theatre named after famous Sutton resident, Sir Harry Secombe. A six screen empire cinema is located directly opposite the St Nicholas Shopping centre and for more active pursuits the Sutton Life Centre offers a number of opportunities for children and young adults and there are a number of leisure centres and sports clubs all over Sutton and the surrounding areas.
Rest assured, the continued development of Sutton has not been to the detriment of green space and Sutton has two Local nature Reserves, the Anton Crescent Wetland Centre and the Devonshire Avenue Nature Area. Sutton Green, Sutton Common and Manor Park are all open to the public with fountains tennis courts and memorials being dotted around them.
Schools in Sutton
Sutton proudly boasts some very high performing schools and a generous mix of state and private schools. Greenshaw High School for example would once have been classed as a typical 1960’s comprehensive with all the connotations that go with that, however ofsted reports show consistently good-to-outstanding results with a steady rise in achievement in recent years. Sutton Grammar School for Boys is a hugely oversubscribed school with its selective criteria prompting a mini boom in private tutors for the area, likewise the independent Sutton High School for Girls boasts outstanding achievements, a long waiting list and exemplary facilities.
Primary Schools are also well regarded in the area and include: Brookfield Primary, All Saints Benhilton CofE, and Homefield Prep to name a few.
However academic standards aren’t Suttons only route to success, the area being the birthplace of many celebrities not least; Ian Stewart co-founder of the Rolling Stones (The Stones being ‘discovered’ in a pub in Sutton), Penelope Keith, (Actress who played Margot in the Good Life and must surely have based the character on some of her experiences of Sutton), and more recently Songwriter Katie Melua.