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Thinking of moving to Forest Hill
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Posts: 2
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #1
05-01-2011 08:34 PM

Hi all,

I'm considering buying a flat in Forest Hill. The places I've looked at are mostly just off Perry Vale or very close to the station. I'm a single woman and I worry about security since I get back from work fairly late (7 to 7:30). I saw the thread about burglaries and it worries me. Is it very common to be burgled? Does anyone feel unsafe walking in the street in the evening? Are there regular violent attacks/rapes?

I've looked around the neighbourhood and it seemed alright during the daytime. Unsure

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Posts: 49
Joined: Mar 2004
Post: #2
05-01-2011 09:11 PM

Hello Thump

I have lived in Honor Oak for 10 years and have never had any problems I feel very safe. The trains are very busy at that time so you would probably find a lot of people walking your way home.

I think its a great area to live.

Good Luck


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Posts: 20
Joined: Oct 2007
Post: #3
05-01-2011 09:15 PM

Hi Thump
I've lived in Forest Hill for seven years and have never felt threatened in any way and I feel quite safe in the area. As far as I am aware, none of my neighbours or I have had any problems with burglaries or any other forms of violence.
Overall, I'd say Forest Hill is a good location to live Thumbsup

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Posts: 189
Joined: Jan 2010
Post: #4
05-01-2011 09:58 PM

I've lived here 7 years and know a couple of people whose houses have been burgled while they were out, but nobody who has been attacked in the street. I always feel pretty safe walking at night and there usually people around. Before moving here I was attacked in the street several times in Camberwell and E Dulwich, and also burgled, so to me it seems a relatively good area for SE London.

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Posts: 69
Joined: Aug 2009
Post: #5
06-01-2011 08:07 AM

Forest Hill has a low crime rate and most victims of burglaries are careless about their home security. The majority of burglaries in the area occur on the west side of the railway line or the Dulwich end (Not Perry Vale which is on the east side).

Virtually all violence is between men and rarely involves women. Women are more likely to victims of theft or pickpockets especially on buses.

If you come back by train and walk down Perry Vale there is nearly always a lot of people walking down the road at the same time because the majority of people get off the train at Forest Hill.

I have never heard of a rape in Forest Hill and rapists tend to target women usually with a remote spot nearby such as a churchyard

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Posts: 490
Joined: Jul 2010
Post: #6
06-01-2011 11:11 AM


Ive lived in FH since 1982 and say it is a very safe place to live, now not saying there is no crime as that would be a very silly thing to say as everywhere as some crime, cant say i ever heard of any rapes either, the train at that time of night is indeed quite full and you should be ok walking up Perry Vale, i normally get off the train at that time, yet sorry i go the other way, up London Road towards Hornimans

Hope you find your peace in FH if you chose to move here

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Posts: 1,538
Joined: Apr 2006
Post: #7
06-01-2011 12:09 PM

Our alarm went off by accident a few years ago and the police were on scene in 2 minutes which is pretty impressive.

To sum it up, FH is a nice place to live.

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Posts: 2
Joined: Jan 2011
Post: #8
06-01-2011 12:32 PM

Thanks everyone, it's good to hear about the good and not just the bad. I have my heart set on a little flat on Paxton Road but as there is a flat I could afford in East Finchley, I was wondering if I should not settle for a box in very safe Finchley rather than a comfy place in Forest Hill where I might be afraid all the time.

What's the community like? Can I hope for friendly neighbours I can rely on if need be? Is everyone as helpful and friendly as you?

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Posts: 2,002
Joined: Apr 2005
Post: #9
06-01-2011 12:52 PM

Although there appears to have been a worrying increase in break ins I would agree that SE23 is fairly safe.
I note someone said most of the break ins are the Dulwich side of the tracks which is not surprising as that is where the money is.

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Posts: 361
Joined: Dec 2007
Post: #10
06-01-2011 01:05 PM

Thump, I know East Finchley quite well and used to live in and around Golders Green for more than 10 years until I moved sarff, I don't think it is any less safe in SE23 at all, plus you will get quite a lot more value for your property money down here.

I regularly use the trains a lot later than you are planning to, often come home after 10pm or even on the last train past midnight if I'm out with friends, and I have never felt threatened or unsafe. (getting off at HOP, but don't think FH should be too different). At 7.30pm you would still get a lot of people returning from offices in the West End and City, Canary Wharf workers tend to work even later of course and now also use the ELL, and you will find many people are still on the trains until at least 10.30pm.

PS. If you miss the Heath, try the top of Horniman gardens - beautiful views that will give Parliament Hill a run for its money! :-)

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Posts: 189
Joined: Jan 2010
Post: #11
06-01-2011 01:27 PM

About neighbours: ours behave in a very neighbourly way. The week we moved in, some workmen came round to measure our windows while we were out, and two neighbours we hadn't even met shot out to challenge them. And we found cat feeders and people to swap ladders with very quickly. I think you'll like it here!

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Posts: 12
Joined: Nov 2010
Post: #12
06-01-2011 01:45 PM


We have lived in FH for 15 years and lived in Central and West London (Notting Hill) before that. Can't recommend it enough. We have heard of some burglaries over the years but they have been very few and spread out. We probably know about half the people who live in our road - there is a real sense of community that we never found in the places we lived in before. We walk down Perry Vale at night too (often at same time as you would be) and have never seen any trouble at all.

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Posts: 212
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #13
06-01-2011 02:01 PM

Just wanted to weigh in on walking back from the station at night. I live on the Perry Vale side and before I moved here I investigated bus routes and mini cab firms to ensure that I wouldn't have to walk home alone at night.

I've lived in FH for 8 years and have never had a problem walking back from the station (knock on wood) All my investigations were unneeded. I've often taken 'the last train from London Bridge' which tends to be full (even on weeknights) and walked back to my house with several people on the road.

Friends of mine live in Newington Green in North London and, although nothing has happened to me there either, I've often felt a bit uneasy walking the streets around my friend's house in North London at night. Never had that feeling in FH.

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Posts: 3,256
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #14
06-01-2011 02:10 PM

I would personally recommend Paxton Road, having lived there for a couple of years (renting). Access to the communal swimming pool was particularly nice. And you can stick to the main road walking back from the station, not that the side roads are a problem.

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Posts: 36
Joined: Aug 2010
Post: #15
06-01-2011 10:19 PM

After 4 months of trying to complete on our flat purchase we were over the moon to move into our flat close to Forest Hill station!
Before moving in we had a temporary room on Woolstone Road and walked down Perry Vale at all hours and didn't feel any less safe than when living in Clapham or Primrose Hill.
As for burglars - we know the flat we bought has been burgled before but it didn't put us off as when we lived in York city centre our house was burgled there so know it can unfortunately happen anywhere. These horrible people continue so all you can do is get good insurance and good neighbours and I think we now have both in Forest Hill! I for one would highly recommend the area to live and it just seems to be getting better! Smile

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No Longer Registered

Posts: 61
Joined: Oct 2006
Post: #16
06-01-2011 11:08 PM

I think Forest Hill is a pretty safe area and we have great neighbours.

The only person to person trouble I can remember seeing in 15 years happened on the train and involved a drunken Millwall fan.

We were burgled once in the middle of the night but whoever it was got in though a patio door that didn't have a proper lock and may have been left unlocked.

If security is a big concern it might be a good idea to avoid ground floor or basement flats as it is harder to secure the windows.

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