Imagine keeping your work and home life separate without the commute, balanced with an urban London lifestyle and regularly getting away from it all, without ever having to go anywhere. If that sounds like the stuff of dreams, stand by for a reality check.
Standing on Kirkwood Road in SE15, there is little clue to what lays behind an unassuming gate in a typical Victorian terrace, least of all a gasp-worthy pair of houses created from a former hosepipe factory.
The conversion was completed in 2006 after the old industrial building had lain empty for some years. When open, the factory was the home of W. Greenwood & Sons Co. Ltd who operated here as “oil resisting hose pipe manufacturers” between about 1950 and 1980.
Many years later, an enterprising developer and architect saw a new future of residential use. Initially gaining consent for a mews of three, they were subsequently given permission to take that number down to two having decided a pair of larger houses would be rather more exciting. At 3,349ft2 this one is the bigger brother and is available for the first time since its initial sale.
Packed to the rafters with exposed timberwork, the house emits a convincing barn-like quality that immediately captured the current owner: at the time, a move to a converted farm building in the countryside was seriously on the cards. Already living a loft life in a nearby converted school, moving here delivered the desired domestic setting while retaining an urban existence.
Inside, the sense of light grabs you at once. As well as large skylights, a double height glass atrium reaches into the roof’s apex and forms the end piece to the dining kitchen and, above it, the vast living room (where you’ll find a real log burner for winter cosiness). 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, a chill-out room – of course! – and a surprisingly secluded garden complete a unique property, described by the owner as “very much a comfortable and functional home”.
The cherry on the cake is the detached workshop at the end of the garden, now renovated into a wonderful studio space for running a business – a major improvement on using the spare bedroom!
As one of London’s most vibrant and eclectic neighbourhoods, Peckham has recently added a slew of fun cafés and bars to an already lively high street and market. The town is home to Peckhamplex, London’s most successful independent cinema, as well as the summertime Rooftop Film Club. Wander past numerous places to eat and some great local pubs to eventually end up at Peckham Rye Park & Common, where you can walk off any calories accumulated along the way.
Should you wish to leave the neighbourhood, London Overground and Southern trains stop at nearby Queens Road Peckham station, with direct services to, among others, London Bridge (7 mins) and Shoreditch High Street (17 mins).