This one-bedroom apartment is set in Peckham’s beautiful Grade II-listed Pilgrims Cloisters. Built in 1837, the individual apartments are arranged around a central courtyard planted with a lush communal garden. Adorned with turrets, hoodmould and cornices, the building borrows from Tudor and Gothic architectural traditions. Situated just off Peckham Road, the apartment is close to the delicatessens, bars and restaurants in Peckham and Camberwell and still maintains a tranquil atmosphere tucked inside the cloisters.
Setting the Scene
Originally conceived as almshouses for the elderly, Pilgrims Cloisters was built in 1837 and today stands as a fine example of 19th architecture. The mock Tudor façade, built in London stock brick, is studded with mullioned windows and adorned with white stucco mouldings and ornaments. Octagonal embattled turrets flank the central three-bay section, and from here, a large green-painted wooden door opens to the cobbled entranceway to the central courtyard, planted with an array of tropical plants. For more information, please see the History section.
The Grand Tour
A short walk across the communal gardens and under a pointed arch, a staircase rises to the first floor of the building, where there is the entrance to this apartment. This opens to the living space, a bright room with soft whitewashed walls and broad boards of original oak flooring. A sitting area is currently arranged at one end of the room, next to a casement window fitted with panelled shutters. Light pours through the window, framing views over the lush courtyard garden below. At the other end of the room is a perfectly formed kitchen with white cabinetry. Open shelves and cupboards provide more space for storage, and there is a handy dishwasher too. There is also ample space for a dining table and chairs, and an exposed brick fireplace adds character and provides clever storage space.
A door from the living room leads to the bedroom. There is space for a double bed to sit underneath the mullioned casement window; the white-painted shutters and original iron latch are a wonderful 19th-century detail. From here, a beautifully weathered oak door with decorative cut-out details leads to the bathroom. The shower is positioned underneath a high roof light, adding a surprising sense of volume and filling the room with light.
The Great Outdoors
In the central courtyard of Pilgrims Cloisters is a communal garden, providing a place for residents to meet and lending it a lively, convivial spirit. It has been planted with a range of exotic plants, including palm trees and rhododendron. Dispersed around the garden are a myriad of benches, making it a wonderful spot for a morning coffee or simply relaxing with a book.
Out and About
Pilgrims Cloisters is situated just off Peckham Road between Camberwell and Peckham. As such, there is a range of dining and entertainment options in the vicinity. Just down the road is the bohemian The Peckham Pelican and TOAD Bakery. In Peckham, Coal Rooms and Kudu are local favourites.
In Camberwell is the ever-popular Theo’s Pizzeria and the newly opened Grove Lane Deli, which is highly rated for its provisions. On Camberwell Church Street, further options include Veraison Wines for natural wines and light snacks in an elegant setting, while The Camberwell Arms is of particular note for its excellent cuisine. There is also a weekly farmer’s market on Camberwell Green. Bellenden Road, Peckham’s pretty village with its excellent selection of restaurants, cafes, and good pubs, is just 15 minutes away.
The green spaces of Ruskin Park, Brockwell Park, and Peckham Rye are all within easy walking distance, while local leisure facilities include the nearby Butterfly Tennis Club and Camberwell Green swimming pool. Local cultural distractions are plentiful and include the South London Gallery and Dulwich Picture Gallery.
There are several excellent state and public schools in the area, including James Allen’s Girls’ School, Alleyn’s School, The Villa Pre-Prep and Nursery, Dog Kennel Hill Primary School and Lyndhurst Primary School.
Denmark Hill station is a short walk away, running direct rail services to Victoria, Blackfriars and St Pancras International, and Overground services to Clapham Junction or Dalston Junction via Canada Water (Jubilee Line).
Tenure: Share of Freehold
Lease Length: approx. 970 years remaining
Service Charge: approx. £4686 per annum
Ground Rent: n/a
Council Tax Band: A
In 1807 the Aged Pilgrims’ Friendly Society was established with the purpose of providing ‘permanent relief to the aged and infirm Christian poor of the age of sixty and above and whose income does not exceed five shillings per week’. It was soon recognised that the society provided pension of five guineas a week was not sufficient in many cases, and there was need for accommodation in the form of almshouses for members. In 1834 the society commenced construction on such a residence, known as Pilgrims Cloisters on a site donated by William Peacock.
Pilgrims Cloisters offered older people a place to live and socialise in the communal areas with living spaces dispersed over two storeys with a chapel over the entrance, and initiative that coincided with a flurry of construction of communal living spaces across London, ranging from social housing to homes for independent female workers.
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