Lying to the south-west of Chislehurst, this is a highly desirable and family friendly residential neighbourhood boasting some attractive houses with extensive gardens.
A short history
The area we now know as Bickley was almost uninhabited until the 18th century. An exception was a hunting lodge which belonged to the Wells family who, from 1759 onwards, enlarged the house until it became Bickley Hall.
John Wells, a shipbuilder from Deptford, bought the 1,200-acre estate from his brother but had to sell it off in parcels when he lost money in a bank crash which kick-started the development of Bickley. The first roads had been built over with villas for the upper middle classes by the time that Southborough station (later renamed Bickley) opened in 1858. It was George Wythes who commissioned some of the best architects of the era to build find homes with gardens of between two and 5 acres; he also gave the site for Bickley Park cricket club. In the late 19th century, a series of distinctive houses were built up around the church.
During the 20th of century, many of these early houses were deemed too large or impractical for standards of the day and were subdivided or demolished.
Green spaces and going out
The Jubilee Country Park covers 62 acres of wildflower meadows and ancient woodland. There is a cycle route from here through to Petts Wood. Whitehall Recreation Ground on Southland Road has a children’s playground as does Widmore. The Bickley Park Cricket Club caters for adults and juniors.
There is a clutch of restaurants along Chatterton Road, alongside a number of shops, supermarkets and a few pubs. For a wider selection, residents head into Bromley town centre or Chislehurst.
Trains to Victoria station take 30 mins from Bickley. Those heading to the City will catch trains from nearby Chislehurst station for services to London Bridge (and Canary Wharf, connecting to the Jubilee line).
Did you know?
David Bowie lived at 106 Canon Road for a year in the early 1950s. He’s not the only musician to live in Bickley: Pixie Lott originally lived in Petts Wood before moving down the road to Bickley in her teens.