Wimbledon and the surrounding areas
A potted history
The Village of Wimbledon at the top of Wimbledon Hill, where our offices are based, is just less than 10 miles from the centre of London yet, in certain respects, it feels as though it is in the heart of the country. The old medieval High Street which included the church, the Old Rectory and several pubs, wound its way from the Common to the top of Wimbledon Hill. It still retains its old world character and the handsome buildings in this charming village house a first class selection of shops, restaurants, wine bars, pavement cafes, boutiques and businesses – ideal for those living in the nearby flats, apartments and houses.
There is clear archaeological evidence that Wimbledon has been inhabited since prehistoric times on the open and dry hill top of Wimbledon Common with many traces of early British people. The most important of these is Ceasar’s Camp, an Iron Age hill fort covering some seven acres on the south-west side of the Common. No relation to Julius Ceasar, of course as the camp was not so named until the beginning of the 19th Century.
In 1588 Sir Thomas Cecil really put Wimbledon on the map by having the road from London improved and building a manor on a steep hill north-east of the church. The house itself was a landmark with terraces and courtyards, a great hall and a chapel. Both Queen Elizabeth I and James I were entertained here on several occasions. As such, it transformed the Village from a relative backwater into one of the social centres of Elizabethan and Stuart England bringing the area into contact with the wider world. Government officials, city merchants and the like realised that Wimbledon was the ideal country retreat yet was just a short horse ride from the City.
The coming of the railway in 1838 was the next major transformation and Wimbledon expanded rapidly with the Victorian classes building or buying large houses with generous gardens. Naturally servants, gardeners and shopkeepers were required and, in the 1850’s, well planned streets of terraced and semi-detached properties were built to house them all.
The popularity of the area grew throughout the 20th into the 21st Century - its proximity to Central London providing a genuine meeting of Town and Country and making it an increasingly favoured residential area for those working in Central London who wanted to escape the hustle and bustle of the City at evenings and weekends. As the Capital became more cosmopolitan foreign nationals working in London have also become increasingly attracted to the area and, after it became home to the All England Tennis Club and the Championships, the name “Wimbledon” became internationally known.
Sauntering down the Village high street today you could easily believe you were in a country village – with people on horseback clip-clopping their way past fine old buildings and shops towards the open spaces of the Common with 1200 acres of greenery- a mixture of heathland, copses, ponds and woodland. Yet all this is within just a few miles of the hustle and bustle of Central London. In the Village itself are the smaller fashionable boutiques, shops, restaurants, pubs, wine bars and pavement cafes, whilst Wimbledon Town, just down the hill offers not only equally excellent shopping facilities but also has a number of superstores and the Centre Court shopping mall just beside Wimbledon Station. The New Wimbledon Theatre has a year round programme of live entertainment – as does the Polka Children’s Theatre – and there are two cinemas – one being a multiplex. For the music lover Wimbledon also has its own Symphony Orchestra and Choral Society.
There are numerous excellent educational establishments in the area with a wide choice of schools, both in the State and Independent sectors – including Wimbledon and Putney High Schools for girls and Kings College School for boys. All currently occupy positions at the top end of the league tables. International Schools include the Norwegian School in Arterberry Road and The Marymount International School in George Road on the Coombe Hill Estate. This makes buying an apartment or house in Wimbledon perfect for families.
Schools in the Wimbledon Area
For more detailed information go to our schools page
|Bishop Gilpin School||Rokeby Prep School||Kings College School||Raynes Park High School||The American Community School|
|Dundonald School||St. John Fisher School||Hall School Wimbledon||Ricards and Rutlish Combined 6th Form||The French Lycee|
|Donhead Prep School||St. Mary’s RC School||Putney High School||St Mark’s School||The German School|
|Garfield School||St Matthew’s CofE||Raynes Park High School||South Thames College||The Japanese School|
|Hollymount School||The Rowans Prep||Ricards Lodge High School||Ursuline Wimbledon 6th Form||The Norwegian School|
|Holy Cross Prep School||The Study Prep||Rutlish School||Wimbledon College 6th Form||The Swedish School|
|Holy Trinity School||West Wimbledon Primary||Ursuline Convent High School|
|Joseph Hood School||Willington Prep School||Wimbledon College|
|Merton Park School||Wimbledon Chase||Wimbledon High School|
|Pelham School||Wimbledon Common Prep School|
|Poplar School||Wimbledon Park School|
|Priory Cof E School||Ursuline Convent Prep|
All work and all play too!
We cannot talk about Wimbledon without mentioning tennis! It’s the main reason why the name “Wimbledon” is known the world over. The All England Lawn Tennis Club has become a national landmark and every June the world’s top players join battle for two weeks to sort out the best from the rest. It will also be a major venue for the 2012 Olympics.
For lesser mortals both Wimbledon and Coombe offer a wealth of sporting facilities including no less than five golf courses. The Wimbledon Club caters for those wishing to play cricket, tennis, squash and hockey and there are other health establishments in the area providing a variety of facilities. Riding stables and livery are available in Wimbledon Village.
Getting here…and there
There are excellent main line train services into Central London from Wimbledon Town, Raynes Park, Norbiton and Kingston and, in addition, there are District Line underground stations at Wimbledon, Wimbledon Park and Southfields with services to the West End and the City. London Transport buses provide a wide choice of routes to Central London and the A3 trunk road provides direct access to Central London and to the South of England and the M25 which connects with the Motorway network around the Capital. The area is also particularly convenient for those travellers using London’s airports at Heathrow or Gatwick. This makes the location a perfect choice for young professionals wanting to buy a house or flat.
Willow House, 35 High Street Wimbledon Common ...our main office
This elegant listed building dates from 1760 when George III was on the throne. It started as a baker’s shop, then became a drapery and, in 1837, became a doctor’s surgery – remaining as such for the next 131 years – an essential part of Village life.
Since 1987 it has been home to Robert Holmes & Co, a Wimbledon Estate Agents and as local residents and fervent supporters of the local community we like to think that we too are, perhaps,an essential part of Village life.