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London Borough of Culture

Bonkers Blog May 2017

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London Borough of Culture

14 May (Part 1) - Sitting on a gold mine

It’s been a very busy weekend for Network Rail at Abbey Wood. Tomorrow’s commuters will see a new footbridge at the end of the platform and a rather imposing roof - or at least the basics of one - over the stairs from the main concourse down to the North Kent line platform. The first section flew like a massive Noah’s Ark high over Harrow Manorway yesterday morning. The stairs will not be in use until October obviously.

Further down the line miles more fat cable has been drawn in and an extra power line gantry or two has been installed. In two days, lucky Abbey Wood residents will have seen the value of their houses go up by one thousand pounds at least.

CrossrailAccording to Hamptons Estate Agents, click image for source document, Abbey Wood has seen the biggest price increase this year along the whole of the Elizabeth Line.

I’m not surprised. I’m not one for looking at house prices each week, but my recollection is that prices here - certainly where I live - stagnated relative to other parts of London for the whole of the 1990s. £74,000 in 1987 and around £125,000 in the early 2000s.

Everyone was amazed when one identical to mine sold for £265,000 in 2006 but the prices dropped back quite a lot soon afterwards and have recovered only in the last two or three years.

One not very different to mine was up for sale at £450,00 at the beginning of this year and the owner told me it went for even more.

Wonderful for whoever I might name in my will but not a lot of fun for young families - or any other sort of buyer come to that.

This borough has been deprived of good transport links for far too long and much of that is down to Bexley Council which turned down the chance of new transport links for far too long.

Now the Council wants to knock down half of Abbey Wood’s new station to extend Crossrail  to Slade Green and beyond. Every time I mention that to Network Rail staff their eyes glaze over and they wisely avoid giving any sort of answer.

 

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