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Woolwich London Guide

3 October 2020 Simon Banks Read time: 3 min
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Simon Banks

Eight minutes from Canary Wharf. Fourteen minutes from Liverpool Street. And 22 minutes from Bond Street. That's what residents of Woolwich can look forward to once the much-delayed Elizabeth Line (Crossrail) finally opens at some stage in the next couple of years.

In the meantime, if you're living in Woolwich, you can enjoy riverside settings and extensive regeneration that is making this neighbourhood a southeast London hotspot. Already full of heritage, Woolwich is effortlessly combining the old with the new.

But what's it really like living in the SE18 postcode? In our latest London guide, we're bringing you everything there is to know about Woolwich, including its history, rental prices and things to do and see.

Woolwich on a map

Woolwich is a district in southeast London and falls under the Royal Borough of Greenwich. Neighbouring areas include Greenwich, Charlton, Blackheath and Plumstead.

History of Woolwich

The history of Woolwich dates back to the Iron Age, with a large settlement from this era found at current waterfront developments when they were under construction. It's believed to be the only one of its kind found in London so far.

Fast-forward to modern-ish times, and Woolwich began to develop into a maritime, military and industrial centre in the 14th century. By the 18th century, it had retained much of its maritime heritage and became a place where many residents made their living by working on the dock.

During the late 20th century, the area saw much decline. This was because of the closure of important factories. What followed was many years of tough economic conditions until the area began seeing regeneration again with the announcement of the Elizabeth Line and a plethora of new developments.

Who lives there?

According to the last census, Woolwich has a population of just under 85,000 and a median age of 32. Just over 73 percent of residents are renters, making it a particular renter-friendly neighbourhood.

Renting in Woolwich

Apartments for rent in Woolwich

Woolwich's charm lies in the variety of its homes. Many shiny new developments have been constructed to give the area some sheen, but it's the converted heritage buildings that provide the character.

Then there are the Victorian period houses and properties from the Thirties. All of these homes combine to offer renters a mix of properties that cater to all tastes, whether you like charming period features or stylish new buildings.

One-bedroom homes fetch in the region of £1,250 per month, with two-bedroom apartments averaging £1,500 per month. If you're looking for family-sized homes of three-bedrooms-and-up, expect to pay from £1,750 per month.

Woolwich travel

Woolwich Ferry

When the Elizabeth Line opens, Woolwich will be one of the best-connected areas in southeast London, with direct services to the City, the West End and Canary Wharf in less than 25 minutes.

For now, however, you will have to make do with Woolwich Arsenal and Woolwich Dockyard railway stations, as well as a DLR line. There's also the Woolwich Ferry, one of London's oldest transport routes that operate to the River Thames to North Woolwich. Woolwich is located in travel Zone 4.

Woolwich eateries

Con Gusto

Interior at Con Gusto

A winner of Timeout's Love London Award in 2018, Con Gusto is your friendly neighbourhood restaurant that serves up tasty Italian cuisine. Set on the Royal Arsenal Riverside, Con Gusto is housed in a Grade II listed building and brings you the tastes of Italy.

Creams

Enjoy the ultimate dessert experience at Creams Cafe. Choose from a selection fo real Americana milkshakes, scrumptious Sundays and much more. Who needs something savoury when you can enjoy food this sweet?

Dial Arch

Dial Arch pub

Find your new local at the Dial Arch, a stylish pub set in a charming 18th-century building. There are plenty of ales to choose from, not to mention excellent pub grub that will go down a treat.

Things to do in Woolwich

Woolwich Town Centre

Head to the large town centre and wander the local shops and chain favourites. Grab a bite to eat in one of the cafes and soak up the local community while embracing the maritime vibes.

Beresford Square

Woolwich Market

Beresford Square is a pedestrianised town and market square that was formed in the 19th century. Today, it still houses a market where you can find plenty of quaint items for your new Woolwich home.

Riverside walks

Make the most of Woolwich's riverside location and go for a scenic stroll along the Thames. The route takes you to the Thames Barrier Reef and beyond as you admire London's riverside settings.

Moving to Woolwich

South London has often been described as a part of the capital that's cut off from the rest, but improving travel links like the Elizabeth Line are making it much more accessible. And yet, even without the Crossrail, Woolwich is an emerging neighbourhood with already-excellent connections, markets and maritime history for you to embrace and enjoy. 

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