About Southwood Hall Estate


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Most people would agree that our Estate, which includes: Southwood Hall, Wood lane, Muswell Hill Road and South Close, is a fine place in which to live. The flats are of good size and well-made, reflecting some of the style of the more generous time of their building, and the gardens are beautiful, even grand, particularly because of several magnificent trees. Despite being within easy reach of Central London, in most directions the views might lead you to think you were living in the country rather than one of the largest towns on earth, because of sitting between two ancient woods. The tube and buses are conveniently close, Muswell Hill is a good place to shop, and Brent Cross isn't too far away. There are several quite good restaurants in the Archway Road, Highgate and an enormous variety in Crouch End and some reliable pubs too.

We owe most of these advantages to happy accidents in the past, even the remote past. The ice decided to stop here for long enough to build hills many thousands of years ago; in the Middle Ages the Bishops of London enjoyed hunting here (the name Highgate is from Highgate - a gate in the high hedge that bounded their estate), and in the times of the plague the victims were buried in Church Bottom and not disturbed for many years for fear of the Pest returning, so there was open land for Southwood Hall, and eventually the school that replaced it, and our estate at last.

Brief History

"The Priory, Southwood Hall, and the houses in Wood Lane were the only houses between Shepherd's Hill, Muswell Hill Road, and Queen's wood in 1898. (fn. 83) In 1899 the Freehold and Leasehold Investment Co. acquired the Priory and its large grounds (fn. 84) and by 1920 had laid out Priory Gardens. By 1935 the whole site was built over. Southwood Hall, on the corner of Wood Lane and Muswell Hill Road, was replaced by 1937 by red-brick blocks of flats. (fn. 85) Nine cottages, called Churchyard Bottom or Woodside Cottages, were demolished in 1930-1 by the council and replaced by Summersby Road, which contained eighteen flats. (fn. 86) A little farther south the frontage to Archway Road and the streets immediately to the east, including the threestoreyed terraced houses of 1873-4 in Holmesdale Road, (fn. 87) were built up by 1896. The whole area west of Archway Road, north of Hornsey Lane, and south of the G.N.R. was built over by 1920." to find out more visit British History Online