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  • Writer's pictureN&N Richmond - Richmond Estate Agent

Roads of Richmond - Sheen Road

The Sheen Road, Almshouses, Red Cow Pub, The Old Fire Station Richmond-Upon-Thames

The Sheen Road, formerly “The Marshgate” runs from Eton Street in the centre of Richmond to a few roads passed the junction with Queens Road where it turns into the Upper Richmond Road.

The first section of Sheen Road is right in the heart of Richmond with a row of shops and amenities including Waitrose, Genco, Digme and Coffeeology housed in the Old Fire Station, built in the 1870s. In the 1930s several very large blocks of flats were built in Richmond. The site of Lichfield House on the Sheen Road was taken by Lichfield Court in 1935. This attractive development of two art-deco blocks offering studio-three bedroom flats is above and behind a row of shops including Gail’s and The Goodlife Bike. The larger block surrounds a lovely manicured garden complete with fountain and both blocks are served by a porter and many of the flats come with parking. Opposite is two modern blocks of flats, Carrington Lodge and Wilton Court. The First Church of Christ Scientist stands proudly on the intersection at Sheen Road and Paradise Road with a Reading Room next door.

The next part of the road up to Church Road has some of the oldest properties. It was from about 1690 onwards that Richmond began to develop from a village into a small but prosperous town and many mansions were built on the outskirts of Richmond along the Sheen Road. The main impetus seems to have been London money; rich merchants seeking both investments and Summer houses outside, but conveniently close to the capital. In some cases they rented existing houses - then perhaps, bought and rebuilt them. John Knapp, a member of the “Haberdashers’ Company” first rented, then granted a mortgage on and then purchased outright a house on Sheen Road. Once it was his own property in 1699, he rebuilt it as Marshgate House and proudly inserted his crest in the fine wrought iron gate. Other houses including Holly Lodge, Devonshire House, Court Lodge & Spring House plus a short row of gorgeous Georgian cottages make up this very pretty part of Sheen Road.

As you cross Church Road, you’re immediately notice the Red Cow Pub and just to the right are Houblon’s Almshouses. Richmond’s prosperity is reflected in the very large provision of almshouses in the town and there are three on the Sheen Road. In 1759 Rebecca Houblon, the spinster daughter of a former Governor of the Bank of England founded almshouses for nine single women. These are located on land she owned where the old Worple Way diverted from Sheen Road and near where the Red Cow Pub stands. They consisted of three blocks around a square enclosed garden. They have never been completely rebuilt and are therefore the oldest almshouses now standing in Richmond.

Two 19th century foundations were not individual benefactions but built by trustees of existing charities. William Hickey had by his will in 1727 founded a trust which provided pensions for six men and ten women. This was endowed with property in Richmond which became increasingly valuable and the trustees with an excess of funds built almshouses. They purchased land at the far end of the Sheen Road and in 1834 engaged the architect Lewis Vulliamy to erect 20 almshouses (10 each for men and women), with a chapel and gate lodge cottages for a porter and a nurse. Hickey’s Almshouses have been expanding ever since - 29 units have been added over the years.

The Trustees of the Church Estate also found themselves with an excess of funds and pursued the same course. Ten almshouses for men and women were erected in 1844 on a site adjoining Hickeys Almshouses and in 1968 another eight were but behind the original row.

Walking from Houblon’s to Hickey’s Almshouses takes you past a very useful row of independent shops on the left side of the road with everything you could possibly need on your doorstep from dry cleaners, chemists, cafes, barbers, newsagents, orthodontists, a massage parlour, restaurants, interiors, plant, bicycle and music shops.

The variety of properties continues with a terrace of 14 Victorian three/four bedroom houses opposite the shops followed by a shorter row of Georgian terraced cottages taking you up to the bottom of Kings Road. From here the road widens slightly and the properties get larger and grander, most with long front gardens and off-street parking. Many, but by no means all, have been converted into flats, with Victorian detached and semi-detached houses on the left and Georgian on the right.

As you near the junction with the Queens Road, there’s another two neat rows of Victorian and then Edwardian five bedroom houses, most with off-street parking and the petrol station in between. Opposite is Marshgate School. Rated 34th in the Times List of Outstanding Primary Schools in the UK and that also puts it in the 13th place within all London schools. Not a bad school catchment!

The Black Horse pub was built on the corner of Sheen Road and Queens Road in about 1720. In 2006 it closed as a public house and a few years later it was converted into a block of contemporary flats with underground parking.

Stawell House at the opposite corner of Queens Road and Sheen Road was demolished for the great Courtlands in the 1930s. Courtlands later suffered a devastating direct hit during WWII. Now it’s a very popular development of one-three bedroom flats with well maintained gardens, off-street parking and garages. Just behind Courtlands is a convenient cut-through to North Sheen Woods and from there the 2,500 acres of Richmond Park.

The Sheen Road continues until the intersection with Sheen Common Drive where it turns into the Upper Richmond Road. This part of the road is also conveniently located for North Sheen station.

Average Property Price: £476,000 (flats) £1.145M (terraced houses), £1.936M (semi-detached) Rightmove

What The Neighbours Say:

“I and my family have lived very happily these past 22 years on Sheen Road. This part of the road has changed enormously since we moved here. The Black Horse pub and nightclub became apartments, and one part of Christ’s School became Marshgate Primary School. Our children went to school at St Elizabeth’s RC Primary, at the time the best primary school in the Borough, and now there are 3 excellent primary schools just a few minutes walk away.

Bringing up children, and caring for children as my full-time job, I’ve felt fortunate to be a few minutes walk through Courtlands to Sheen Common and Richmond Park, and 12 minutes walk over the footbridge to Lions Gate, Kew Gardens. The Red Cow and the White Horse are 2 great local pubs, and are great for a meal out, with a play park next to the White Horse.

A really big benefit to every member of the family has been the easy commutability from our house. North Sheen train station is 7 minutes walk. Richmond is 12, and we are on excellent bus routes too. It takes me 15 minutes to drive to Hyde Park in the morning! Sainsbury’s supermarket is 8 minutes walk away, and the petrol station has been a useful shop too. We have all enjoyed our years here”. Marlene

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