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Honor Oak/Blythe Hill history
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Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2015
Post: #1
23-07-2015 11:38 AM

I am trying to track down information/maps (past and present) on where we live in Honor Oak - Austin Close backing onto Blythe Hill Fields.
I am wanting maps/information/books that show the development of the area where we live with the intention of putting the maps into frames for a birthday present for my husband.
So far I have obtained the book - Sydenham and Forest Hill - John Coulter and John Seaman. This is a wonderful book of the area but has only a couple of pages on Honor Oak.
I also have got Old Ordnance Survey Maps, Forest Hill and Catford Bridge 1894, Forest Hill 1914.
What was Blythe Hill Fields? and did it have a manor/farm on it?
I would love any help/suggestions.

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Posts: 105
Joined: Nov 2013
Post: #2
23-07-2015 11:50 AM

There's a very brief page for Blythe Hill Fields on Wikipedia, apprently it used to be part of 'Brockley Farm'.
I would be very interested in info about this too, hopefully there will be some knowledgable SE23ers who can help us out! Smile

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Posts: 205
Joined: Nov 2007
Post: #3
24-07-2015 12:10 AM

I'm really interested, too!

The Friends of Blythe Hill Fields always have a good stall at the annual festival, with historical maps and photos of the area (sadly it's just been and gone and I missed it this year due to being on holiday).

The thing that always fascinates me is it having been crossed by the Roman London to Lewes road.

I believe it, or at least part of it, was brickfields used for the local housing, and it was made into a park in the 1930s.

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Posts: 820
Joined: Dec 2006
Post: #4
24-07-2015 04:04 PM
Lots of lovely maps here to research.

sydenham town forum has some threads on local roman roads,
but is not clear to me if anything interesting was ever dug up at Blythe Hill.
The romans stuck to the higher lands to keep a watch out for any potential ambush, so maybe.
wiki is convinced that the road ran down ivydale (the long straight bit obviously), past St. Hilda's Church, and up the hill, so it must be true....

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Posts: 1,414
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #5
24-07-2015 05:48 PM

There definitely is a Roman road running across Blythe Hill. I can remember when it was excavated. I have a map of its route somewhere. The Romans planned their roads in straight lines from hilltop to the next hilltop. It can be calculated where it runs if you find part. Sometimes its location can be seen where subsidence occurs.

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Posts: 2
Joined: Jul 2015
Post: #6
28-07-2015 05:09 PM

Thanks everyone
The Wikipedia description has given me the best, brief description of Blythe Hill Fields.
I managed to find out where Blythe Hill house was as that is close to my residence. And a tiny bit more information about Job Heath's Brickmaking business and how the lower level of Blythe Hill fields was were the earth was dug up.
Also the maps I purchased showed the change of Brockley Park - initially they were looking to put St Saviours church on there.
The best map I found was on the website. They also give some interesting insight into other areas such as Forest Hill, Brockley and Catford.
I haven't found any books specifically related to Honor Oak but I am going to try one more of South East London - Leigh Hatts.
The good news is that I think I have 2 maps from 1894 and 1914 which will show the change nicely.

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