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Putney Park Lane
New
London SW15£1,060,000 Freehold

Putney Park Lane

Enacting the tenets of the Garden City Movement, this spacious 1920s home is surrounded by green spaces

Built with the key principles of the Garden City Movement in mind, this characterful 1920s house, part of West Putney’s Dover House Estate, has a bucolically calm feel. Overlooking a landscaped lawn, it is set on the pedestrianised Putney Park Lane, an ancient green link that cuts through south-west London from Putney Heath and Richmond Park to Barnes Common. Inside, a meticulous renovation has extended into the loft to create a fourth bedroom and a second bathroom. A soothing decorative palette has been employed throughout to create subtly refined, gentle interiors.

Setting the Scene 

One of the first cottage estates built by the London City Council shortly after the First World War, Dover House Estate adopted the key principles of the Garden City Movement. The house is part of a smart and considered terrace, bound by privet hedges and facing onto a communal green; suburban design strategies have been employed here with aplomb. Now a conservation area, the unified façades have been well-preserved, producing a wonderfully coherent character visible when walking the tree-lined streets. Community is paramount here, built into the very fabric of the estate’s design with its shared green spaces and newly renovated playpark.  For more information, please see the History section.

The Grand Tour 

Discretely tucked behind neatly trimmed hedging, the house’s front face is playfully asymmetric. As was typical of its era, a steep slate roof hangs low over the eaves, and aspects of the cottage vernacular have been adopted to create a robust countryside character. Beyond the front door is an entrance hall, a generous and practical space with hooks for coats and understair storage for muddy boots.

The plan flows freely, with generously proportioned rooms brightly lit by large windows. As part of the recent renovation, new windows and radiators have been fitted and a cleverly designed loft conversion has added a bedroom and bathroom. Original features have been carefully retained; exposed pine floorboards flow throughout the ground floor and timber doors stand out against a refined palette of Farrow and Ball’s ‘School House White’.

The primary living space connects to an immaculate British Standards by Plain English kitchen, an inset dining area and a snug. The kitchen is brilliant for entertaining, with informal seating set around a Carrara marble-topped island. A triple bay window in the dining area makes the room bright, with a particularly striking light in the late afternoon – perfect for sitting on the bespoke banquet seating and perusing a paper. Tucked around the corner, the snug area has a wall of red joinery finished in ‘Masai’ by Paint and Paper Library that offers a space for displaying books, ornaments and a TV, a brilliant nook for catching up on a favourite box set.

There are three bedrooms upstairs, each with its own character. The two rooms to the front of the house have verdant views across the green and abundant morning light; the larger also has a bank of refined shaker-style integrated storage. In the other, an exposed inverted staircase poses an opportunity for storage, shelving or seating. To the rear is the third bedroom, with further storage finished with a playful bolt of ‘Stone Blue’ by Farrow & Ball. These rooms share a generous bathroom with an inset bath surrounded by Mandarin Stone tiles, Aston and Matthews tapware, underfloor heating and a Devol laundrymaid. A contemporary Lusso Stone sink contrasts satisfyingly with the raw timber of the original half-glazed doors.  

Making the most of the steady swoop of the roof, the loft houses a final fourth bedroom, an L-shaped retreat made even calmer by its elevated position and minimal colour palette. The extensive eaves space has been utilised as additional storage with a small cubby hole in the dormer space. A second bathroom completes this floor, fitted with refined and classic sanitaryware including a shower lined with marble tiles from Fired Earth.  

The Great Outdoors 

The approach to the front door and recently decorated façade has been laid with sandstone slabs which step up to form two small beds. A sweetly arched passageway leads to the rear access, and a timber bike shed has been installed to one side. 

To the rear, the terraced garden has been sensitively landscaped to make the most of its western aspect. Raised beds house two mature olive trees and banks of astonishingly architectural acanthus mollis. The timber-fenced boundary is draped with headily scented summer and winter jasmine, honeysuckle, and a prolific white climbing rose. A mature acer takes prize position in the corner, and alongside Mexican daisies, white gaura and salvia ‘hot lips’, ensures year-round interest in this low-maintenance garden.  

Out and About 

West Putney has long retained its leafy, village-esque feel. Access to open space is unrivalled, with around 1,140 acres of countryside between Wimbledon Common, Putney Heath, and Putney Lower Common. For both amateur and dedicated cyclists, it doesn’t get much better than the expanses of the open road that loop around Richmond Park, or, for a more leisurely experience, Stage Lodge Stables offer horseriding for all abilities. Meandering along to the north, a stretch of the River Thames is an ideal route for riverside dog walks, marathon training, rowing, or a more sedate Sunday stroll. Putney High Street with its full range of amenities, the Edwardian Wandsworth Park, and Barnes Wetlands Nature Reserve are all within easy reach.

It’s a lovely walk over the park and Wetlands towards Barnes, which we’ve written more about in our residents’ guide. The village high street has been well retained and independent shops, cafés and pubs abound. An exceedingly popular farmer’s market even sets up each Saturday opposite the duck pond. The wonderful Olympic Studios cinema offers all-day dining, while the enduringly popular Riva is the spot for classic Italian dishes, the perfect counterpoint to the new and contemporary take on pub dining at the Waterman’s Arms. For brunch or a coffee, Orange Pekoe in Barnes, or Culver & Nelson in Sheen, neighbour to Le Swine (also to be found at Broadway Market) which offers the best bacon butty in the city. A little further afield are the iconic bastions of al-fresco dining: the inimitable River Cafe and Petersham Nurseries.

The area is near unbeaten in its choice of fantastic schools. A brief stroll away, just off Putney Park Lane, is Falcon’s Primary School and Peregrines Nursery. A little further afield is St Osmunds’ in Barnes, All Saints and Our Lady of Victories. Nearby Merlin and Prospect House offer private primary education. For secondary school, Oasis Academy South Bank and Notre Dame Catholic Girls secondaries are at hand, alongside King’s College London Maths Sixth Form College.

East Putney Station (District Line) and Barnes (Overground services to London Waterloo and towards the southeast) are within walking distance. There are also a number of good bus routes, including to South Kensington from Dover House Road, and easy access to the A3 for trips further afield. 

Council Tax Band: E

Please note that all areas, measurements and distances given in these particulars are approximate and rounded. The text, photographs and floor plans are for general guidance only. Inigo has not tested any services, appliances or specific fittings — prospective purchasers are advised to inspect the property themselves. All fixtures, fittings and furniture not specifically itemised within these particulars are deemed removable by the vendor.

History

In 1888 American writer Edward Bellamy published socialist utopian novel Looking Backward: 2000-1887. The book imagined a society where everyone retired on full benefits at 45, working hours were drastically reduced for manual labourers, and goods instantly appeared at the citizens’ doors.

This book was one of the key sources for one Ebenezer Howard’s conception of the ‘garden city’ in his own book ‘To-morrow: A Peaceful Path to Reform’, published 10 years later. The Garden City was posited as a satellite dwelling organised in a concentric pattern for the “correct principle of a city’s growth – open country ever near at hand, and rapid communication between off-shoots”. In a garden city, 32,000 people would live in a 9,000 acre site with open spaces, public parks, and six boulevards radiating from the central high road. The central city would accommodate 58,000 people, and once a garden city was ‘full’, another would be developed at the next coordinate. 

The Dover House Estate was built along such lines to supply the housing shortage after the First World War on the Putney Park Conservation Area. The pretty rural landscape was preserved, with many original trees preserved from the 18th century. Self-sufficiency was important to the planners, with allotments, shops and the estate’s own school. It was important to the council that the suburban idyll be maintained, and in the summer front hedges were trimmed to a standard height for a consistent appearance.

Putney Park Lane — London SW15
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