Selsdon is an area located in South London, England in the London Borough of Croydon. Selsdon and Ballard is a ward of Croydon Council. At the 2011 Census the population of the ward was 11,719. The leafy suburb was developed during the inter-war period during the 1920s and 1930s, and is remarkable for its many Art Deco houses. It is also well known for the Selsdon Park Hotel, the venue of a 1970 meeting of the Conservative Shadow Cabinet to settle the party manifesto for the impending general election. Labour Party leader Harold Wilson coined the phrase Selsdon Man to describe the free market approach which was agreed, and the Selsdon Group was later formed within the Conservative Party to campaign for its retention.
One side of the residential area of Selsdon is bordered by Selsdon Wood, and the whole area used to be part of Selsdon Park Estate, once well known as hunting and shooting grounds in the area. In the early 1920s the estate was broken up and divided into smallholdings.
After concerns were raised about the rapid development of the village a committee was formed to ensure that an area of 200 acres (0.81 km2) would be set aside and saved for a nature reserve and bird sanctuary which was opened to the public in 1936 and given to the National Trust after Coulsdon and Purley Urban District Council and the Corporation of Croydon agreed to manage it jointly. Selsdon Wood now consists of five large meadows surrounded by extensive woodland and ancient hedges and it still retains the character of a historical woodland. In the second meadow of the Selsdon Wood area there is a bomb crater, and another in Selsdon recreation ground just inside the woods which are closed off. Much wildlife may be found in the wooded areas of Selsdon such as deer, and more recently parakeets.
Local Business and Charities
The main street has changed much over the years. In 2013 many of the shops or offices were fast food takeaways, hair salons, financial services (banks, building societies, estate agents and an insurance broker) and charity shops (Mind and St Christopher's Hospice). Deo Gloria Trust.
In January 2007 the prominent Selsdon Clock, in rustic style with a brushwood motif round its face, was installed on the Selsdon Triangle, on the plinth of a former public lavatory, in front of the library and Sainsbury's supermarket.
Selsdon Hall is based underneath Sainsbury's supermarket and the library. It is designed to be a hub for the local community. It comprises a hall that can be hired privately and a coffee shop, which is open to all members of the public.
The area is currently undergoing a gentle renovation with the well known disused garage being converted into retail and residential units.