Thames Tributaries – the Norbury Brook/River Graveney - Norbury

Thames Tributaries – the River Wandle fed by the Norbury Brook and the River Graveney
The Norbury Brook continues to flow north and west and at Hermitage Bridge continues as the river Graveney.

Post to the west Streatham Vale
Post to the east Norbury

Abingdon Road
Electricity transformer station
Norbury Manor Primary School

Colebrook Road,
Named because the builder of Norbury Hall was Mr.Coles and there is a brook locally

Colmer Road
Swaminarayan Satsang Temple in old school
Craignish Avenue
The main entrance to Norbury Hall was a drive on the line of the road from London Road
Norbury Hall. Built for William Coles in 1802 and later owned by James Hobbs, Mayor of Croydon and imprisoned for his part in the Liberator Building Society scandal. He was also a cricket fan, and had a pitch in the grounds wh8ich is now Norbury Park Cricket Ground. The house is grey brick with a wooden trellis veranda. Said to have been built by John Nash, but this is unlikely, Listed Grade II. Now a retirement home. It originally stood in 30 acres of ornamental gardens including a lake fed by the River Graveney.
Cannons Health Club

Darcy Road
A family name of the Carews – who at one time owned the site.
Bottom end of the Norbury Estate. One of the estate architects, Peter Frederick Binnie, had previously worked on flats called D'Arcy House in Hackney.

London Road
Norbury Library
Fire station
1264 Shurgard Storage Co.
1268 Astral House
. Nine storey slab office blocks By Ronald Ward & Partners, 1962-5. Includes offices for Age Concern
1270 Windsor House, 1963 by Fuller, Hall & Foul sham, 1963-4
1272 Radnor House ribbed concrete panels, by Fuller, Hall & Foulsham, 1962-4
1300 Norbury bar, previously Norbury Hotel
Rex Cinema was next door to the Norbury Hotel
1327 Moon under the Water. Wetherspoons. Opened in 1993
1341-1371 King Edward VII Parade. Built in 1902 with the central section used as a public hall – later a skating rink and a Cinema de Luxe.
1354 Health Centre built 1976/80 By. H. Ingham, chief architect of the South West Thames Regional Health Authority. In brown brick.
1355-1357 Dreamland Beds. This was the Norbury Cinema which included a British Restaurant in the Second World War.
1374 Croydon Gas Co offices 1914 with lecture hall on the first floor
1384 -1400 shops built on the gardens of Westview and Shadowbush both of which big houses survive behind.
1393 designed by Frederick Jones 1903 as the National Westminster Bank
1397 Norbury Islamic centre
1411-1423 Stanford Parade designed by C.Stanley Peach 1907
1432 built in 1902 for Sainsbury’s but now part of the bank
1433 Lloyds Bank designed 1925 by H.Field
1434 Barclays built as the London and South Western Bank 1902
1437 –1441 South Suburban Co-op 1927 by Bethell Swanell and Durnford
1447-1465 gables of the original houses survive above shop fronts built over their gardens
1516 Police
Hermitage Bridge – over the stream at the point at which its name changes from River Graveney to Norbury Brook. The river crossing on a main route into London. This is also the boundary between Norbury and Streatham. Norbury Station. Built 1878 Between Thornton Heath and Streatham Common on Southern Rail. Originally built with long ramps to let race horses off the trains.

Newlands Road
Name of farm owner
Norbury Estate shops- four small shops of 1911-12. No pubs were allowed.

The name is really ‘Northbury’ that is 'northern manor house' or ‘fortification’.

Norbury Estate
This is the site of a racecourse from 1868. Horses used to be brought from Streatham Common Station. Stopped because of the rough behaviour.
London County Council cottage estate – the first built outside its boundaries under an Act 1900. The 30-acre site was acquired in 1901, and plans were drawn up in 190529 houses to the acre, no pubs. The L.C.C. architects were George Weald, P. F. Binnie, R. Stark, and J. S. Brooks. Modelled on Hampstead Garden suburb but cheaper.

Norbury Park
On the site of the North Surrey Golf course bought by Croydon Council in 1935 and laid out as a park
Norbury Brook crosses the park – also called the river Graveney to the west of here.
Semley Road
Norbury Baptist Church. Thomas Greenwood Memorial

Stanford Road
Freeman Court, local authority sheltered housing. On the site of Stanford Road schools built 1914. Used as a hospital in the Great War and became Norbury Manor Secondary School.

St Helen’s Road
4-8 arts and crafts houses, and some of the oldest houses in the area

Tylecroft Road
Farm name from the area

Woodmansterne Road
Sports Ground on the area between Stanford Road and Woodmansterne Road, was originally part of Norbury Golf course, and then the NatWest sports ground
Power League Soccer Centre
Norbury Bowls Club founded 1900.


Unknown said…
Have only just seen this blog, and am fascinated by it. I lived in Norbury for the first 20 years of my life, until I went to University, married and moved away. Some of the places referred to I remember well - my father was Assistant Manager of the old REX cinema, on the site of which Rsdnor House now stands. Because it is so long since I lived there, I cannot remember many of the other places mentioned (King Edward Parade?) but we lived in STANFORD ROAD, right opposite Norbury Manor Secondary School, and I attended the Primary Scoll on Abingdon Road, which I think still exists.
JimMulvey said…
After WWII I returned from evacuation to Norbury Avenue. At the end of Norbury was what we called the 'Golf Links' which then was overgrown and had allotments during the war in the 'dig for Britain' campaign. It was a wonderful wilderness for us kids with loads of strawberries and raspberries that had gone wild. Running through the Golf Links was the Norbury Brook which had been dammed to make a sizeable pond that was used for swimming and all sort of adventures. Many a happy day was spent by families picnicking by the brook and pond. The last time I was in the area was to discover that the brook and pond no longer existed and were in pipes under a plain boring playing field.

As Norbury Brook went under Norbury High street it changed its name to the river Graveney as it meandered on to join the River Wandle. Just beside this bridge was the Sussex public house. The land opposite the now Norbury Hotel pub was the Norbury Estate. From 1861 to 1903 this land was a racecourse. Racehorses were brought down from the newly built Streatham railway station on race days. Horse owners, trainers, jockeys and punters used the Sussex regularly. The owner of the Sussex bought his own racehorse and entered it in a race, winning a very large sum of money most of which he donated to set up a charity for a nearby home for retired theatre people. The landlord named his winning horse after the vermin that frequented his pub cellars on the bank of the Graveney and called the horse 'Water Rat' And that folks, is how the charity Water Rats for theatre people was started.

The River Graveney/Norbury Brook was the border between London County Council and Croydon County Council. In the 1950's Croydon was not part of London then. We would be having a pint in the Norbury hotel and at 10 pm the closing bell would ring. Wev would all get up and wander down to the Sussex at the end of the High Street. The Sussex was the first pub in London and the closing time was 11 pm. Great site. Jim

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