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Woodford Green area guide

Woodford Green | IG8

Area Guide

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Woodford Green Area Info

Woodford Green Area Info

Originally called Woodford Row and boasting its very own windmill at its centre, Woodford Green has always been a hugely popular place to live thanks in no small part to its close proximity to glorious, leafy spaces while at the same time, being just a hop, skip and a jump to the capital. As the name suggests, this area is famous for it’s beautiful village green complete with duck pond, which while no longer home to a windmill (sadly demolished in the mid 18th century), can still claim to have the oldest, serviceable village cricket field in the country. Indeed, the game is clearly woven into the neighbourhood’s fabric, with a cricket wicket forming part of the village sign located near the corner of the High Road and Broadmead Road. The sign also depicts forest cattle, the All Saints’ spire and the Churchill statue that was erected on the green in 1959 in recognition of Sir Winston Churchill’s role as local MP for more than 40 years. Interestingly, Churchill’s political adversary and successor as Prime Minister, Clement Atlee, lived in Woodford Green and there’s a blue plaque on his former home in Monkhams Avenue. Other notable residents include suffragette Sylvia Pankhurst, textile designer William Morris and author James Hilton (he wrote he novel Goodbye Mr. Chips).

Transport links are excellent here with Woodford and Woodford South Underground stations offering access into Liverpool Street station via the Central line in a little over 20 minutes. By car, the North Circular is quite literally on the doorstep and the M25 and M11 are both nearby.

Properties in Woodford Green are varied, with a good stock of Victorian and Edwardian houses, as well as 20s and 30s homes and more recent builds.

The variety of property on offer attracts mostly families, but also young professional couples (often with a view to having children and establishing roots here).

Another huge draw of the area is its exceptional schools, many of which are rated outstanding by Ofsted. Among primaries these include, Churchfields, Nightingale and Oakhill, while Trinity Catholic High School is among the best performing secondaries. Woodford Green is also served by several private schools, including Bancroft’s and Forest.

Things to do in Woodford Green

The abundance of fantastic green spaces and all that they have to offer makes outdoor activities a must in this neck of the woods. Whether cycling, running or simply going for a leisurely stroll to admire the ancient trees of Epping Forest, being out and about in the fresh air is hugely popular here with both residents and visitors alike.

How better to top off an active day than with a visit to one of the area’s many cosy, traditional pubs. Among our favourites are the Travellers Friend (known locally as the ‘Spivs’ thanks to some dodgy dealing that took place there back in the day) and The Cricketers, both of which offer a warm welcome, an extensive drinks selection and hearty, homemade meals.

For a slightly more formal dining experience head to Miller & Carter, located in what was once The Castle pub, and where you’ll find some of the juiciest, most tender and flavoursome steaks in town. However, if Italian is more your thing, then it’s got to be Pizzeria Bel-Sit, a local institution of more than 40 years standing, and where queues still form on the weekend.

One final shout out goes to The Broadway Deli & Grocery run by the knowledgeable and passionate foodie, Jan Robijins, and where you can not only stock up on fine cheese, charcuterie, wines and all other sorts of deliciousness, but also enjoy an superb cup of coffee and a cheeky slice of cake.


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History of Woodford Green

Chipping Ongar refers to the historic town of Castle Ongar but the new name was assumed in the 14th Century and relates to the market that was held there. In 1162 Richard de Lucy, Chief Justice of England built Ongar Castle here. It stood until its demolition in the 16th century and all that remains now is the motte (the mound) and the moat. Sadly, as the land is in privately owned you can’t walk around it but it is visible from the nearby footpath.

The old parish of Chipping Ongar was abolished in the late 1960’s and a new parish of Ongar was created which included nearby Greensted and Shelley. It was assimilated into the Epping Forest district of Essex in 1974.

Thanks largely to the opening of the M11 motorway around the same time, Ongar saw many of its smaller private sector businesses relocate when the focus of trade moved to larger towns like Brentwood and Harlow. Since then Ongar has concentrated on residential development to carve its niche as a commuter hamlet, whilst still retaining its historic roots.

Ongar Parish
Ongar Parish

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