Serene down south
The crescent of Kingston, Sutton, Croydon and Bromley dominates the list of the top 10 quietest boroughs, partly because they all back on to the North Downs. Sutton claims to be one of the cleanest and greenest local authorities, and, in 2002, housing association Peabody completed its environmentally friendly, low-carbon development, BedZED, there.
The first of its kind in the UK, it was built on a disused part of a sewage plant on the edge of Hackbridge, and borders a nature reserve that is a surprising pocket of wilderness within the capital. This original development is part of an ongoing £150 million project to deliver a sustainable suburb.
Sutton’s town centre is changing too: there is a tram extension in the offing, plus a £50 million regeneration of the southern part of the high street, including the refurbishment of the old cinema. Sutton Point, a scheme with 332 flats on the high street, built by CNM Estates, has been unveiled this month. It consists of three towers with apartments, office and retail space, a hotel and health and fitness club, all in a public square. The flats range from studios to three-bedroom apartments and penthouses, and prices start from £310,000.
“Convenience is the name of the game in Sutton, with excellent schools, peaceful family locations, good shopping options and a 26-minute commute to Victoria,” says William Campbell of Foxtons. “Cheam Village and Carshalton Beeches are the most popular areas with families looking for a quieter environment, with Nonsuch Park bordering Cheam Village.”