Hidden London

Sewardstonebury

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Epping Forest, Essex

A wealthy (in parts, fabulously wealthy) village nestling in a quiet corner of Epping Forest. Although administratively outside Greater London, it’s included in Hidden London because it falls within the postal district of E4. Sewardstonebury, the neighbouring garden-centre kingdom of Sewardstone and the ‘scout city’ at Gilwell Park are the only places anywhere in the home counties to have a London postcode. In the 19th century this was an inaccessible hamlet. Barbara Ray, in her history of Chingford, records that a pupil-teacher who lived at Sewardstonebury arrived at Chingford infants’ school so wet and muddy that there was no alternative but to send her home again. Now there are luxury houses strung along the length of Bury Road, the main thoroughfare, and in the private estate to the west. Hornbeam Lane is, by local standards, positively modest. Every second property in Sewardstonebury seems to have builders at work – remodelling or extending the house or landscaping the grounds. Whole new palaces regularly replace insufficiently grand mansions. Sewardstonebury has no shops, church or pub but there are golf courses to the north and south. The West Essex course, created by James Braid in 1900, was designed to make full use of Epping Forest’s natural attributes. With undulating fairways and small, sloping, quick greens, it is reckoned a challenging par 71.

Bury Road
Just another house in Sewardstonebury

Postal district: E4

West  Essex golf club

Brewer's London Phrase & Fable

 
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