Sidcup shown within Greater London
|OS grid reference|
|Ceremonial county||Greater London|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|Postcode district||DA14, DA15|
|UK Parliament||Old Bexley & Sidcup|
|London Assembly||Bexley and Bromley|
Sidcup is a suburban district of south-east London, England, in the London Borough of Bexley. Located 11.3 miles (18.2 km) south east of Charing Cross, it borders the London Boroughs of Bromley and Greenwich.
The name is thought to be derived from Cetecopp meaning "seat shaped or flat topped hill"; it had its earliest recorded use in 1254.
Sidcup originated as a tiny hamlet on the road from London to Maidstone. According to Edward Hasted, "Thomas de Sedcopp was owner of this estate in the 35th year of king Henry VI. [i.e. in the 1450s] as appears by his deed." Hasted described Sidcup in the latter part of the 18th century as "a small street of houses, among which is an inn of much resort", referring to the former Black Horse pub on the high street.
Sidcup parish formed the Sidcup Urban District of Kent from 1908. It was initially known as Foots Cray; however, in 1921 the urban district, and in 1925 the parish, were renamed Sidcup. The parish and district were abolished in 1934 and combined with Chislehurst to form the Chislehurst and Sidcup civil parish and urban district. In 1965 the parish and urban district were abolished. Sidcup went on to form part of the London Borough of Bexley in Greater London and Chislehurst formed part of the London Borough of Bromley.
A number of manor houses, converted to other uses, remain. They include Frognal House, the birthplace and residence of Thomas Townshend, 1st Viscount Sydney, after whom Sydney, Australia was named (now converted for use as residential and nursing accommodation), Lamorbey House (now used by Rose Bruford College), Sidcup Place (now a Brewers Fayre bar and restaurant) and "The Hollies" (now converted for residential use).
Sidcup has a mixture of large Victorian and Edwardian properties alongside typical 1930s suburbia. It retains many parks and open spaces hinting at the great estates and large homes which once stood in the area.
The town contains Queen Mary's Hospital, a large Leisure Centre, four colleges and three secondary schools. Sidcup High Street is the local High Street, while there are some shops and local businesses on the adjacent Station Road. Sidcup High Street was recently the subject of a £1.8 million regeneration scheme In Store For Sidcup paid for by London Borough of Bexley.
Most of the district is within the London Borough of Bexley, however several parts in the North are under the governance of the Royal Borough of Greenwich, including Southspring, Greenhithe Close, Halfway Street (offsite Avery Hill), Radfield Way, Croyde Close and Overmead.
In 2011 The total population was recorded as 10,844. Many residents are aged 65+ or 85+, in line with the whole of London Borough of Bexley. At the census of 2011, the non-white population of Sidcup was recorded at 10.1%; the largest minority group were Asian or Asian British (5.4% of the total population), with White Other totalling 4.8% of the total population. The number of single parent families was higher in the district in comparison to the rest of the London Borough of Bexley. 63.8% reported Christianity as their religious beliefs which was above the borough average. However, these figures do not include the Blackfen and Lamorbey wards within the district.
- For education in Sidcup see the main London Borough of Bexley article
Primary schools in Sidcup include: Birkbeck, Burnt Oak Junior School, Chatsworth, Days Lane, Holy Trinity, Longlands, Orchard School, Our Lady of the Rosary, Royal Park, Sherwood Park, and St Peter Chanel.
Bird College, Christ the King: St Mary's (RC) Sixth Form College, and Rose Bruford College all have sites in Sidcup.
Sport and leisure
Sidcup has a Non-League football club Seven Acre & Sidcup F.C. who play at Sidcup & District Conservative Club. On Sydney Road, there is a Sidcup Sports Club, housing the local rugby and cricket clubs.
Live music venues include the Charcoal Burner and The Iron Horse public houses, although the larger premises at the Beaverwood Club, Chislehurst, draw away a significant audience from this area.
The Sidcup and District Motor Cycle Club was formed at the Station Hotel, Sidcup in 1928. The Club owns the international motor cycle sport venue 'Canada Heights' in Button Street, Swanley, Kent and runs Motocross, Enduro, Hare and Hounds, Trials, Long Distance Trials throughout each year.
Culture, identity and community
It is reputed that it was on the platform of Sidcup railway station that Mick Jagger and Keith Richards had a conversation about music, an event that eventually led to the forming of The Rolling Stones in 1962. Other such connections include the local Rose Bruford College of drama and Bird College, both of which have many well known and famous alumni and there are regular large-scale concerts given by Sidcup Symphony Orchestra, which also serves the wider South East London area.
The murder of teenager Rob Knox at the Metro Bar on Station Road in 2008 was a national news headline. Knox was an up and coming actor who had, just before his death, filmed a small part in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. He was killed protecting his brother from a group of youths. His murderer, Karl Bishop, also from Sidcup, was later found guilty of murder and sentenced. His family have used his death as a forefront for their campaign to end knife crime among young people. As part of the Rob Knox Foundation, there has been a Rob Knox Film Festival held in the district and the neighbouring ward of Bexleyheath and, in 2015, a bench was erected in his name at St John's Church in Sidcup. His death has left a mark on the town.
Sidcup, along with most other suburbs in south east London, is not served by the London underground. Sidcup station opened in October 1866 shortly after the opening of the Dartford Loop Line. The station was built 1 mile (1.6 km) north of Sidcup town centre in the parish of Lamorbey. Sidcup station serves the area with services to London Charing Cross, London Cannon Street as part of a loop service operating via both Lewisham and Woolwich Arsenal, and a service to Gravesend. Fast trains take as little as 20 minutes to get to London Charing Cross.
Sidcup High Street is on the A211, following in length the old London - Maidstone - Hythe road. The A211 starts just after Eltham High Street, in the middle running along the A20 Sidcup By-pass before ending at Foots Cray, where the B2173 continues along the former A20 road. The A211 connects the two main roads in this district; Station Road and Main Road.
Provision for cyclists is generally poor within the district.
Sidcup is served by 10 Transport for London bus routes. Only one route, the 321, runs for 24 hours. No other night routes pass through the area. All routes pass through Sidcup High Street.
Buses that terminate in Sidcup:
- 160 – Sidcup station and Catford Bridge station
- 229 – Sidcup Queen Mary's Hospital and Thamesmead
- 286 – Sidcup Queen Mary's Hospital from Greenwich, Cutty Sark
- 492 – Sidcup station from Bluewater
- R11 – Sidcup Queen Mary's Hospital from Green Street Green High Street / World's End Lane
Buses that pass through Sidcup en route to destination:
- 51 – Orpington station and Woolwich
- 233 – Eltham station and Swanley
- 269 - Bromley North and Bexleyheath Shopping Centre
- 321 - Foots Cray Tesco and New Cross Gate
- B14 - Bexleyheath Shopping Centre and Orpington station Perry Hall Road
- Michele Austin — actress, schooled in Sidcup.
- Steve Backley — Olympic sportsman, born in Sidcup.
- Doreen Bird — dance teacher, lived in Sidcup and established college.
- Quentin Blake — illustrator, artist, born in Sidcup.
- Kate Bush - singer-songwriter, musician and record producer, born in Sidcup.
- Garry Bushell — journalist, lives in Sidcup.
- George Albert Cairns — winner of the last Victoria Cross of World War II, worked in Sidcup.
- Ben Chorley — footballer, born in Sidcup.
- Charlie Clements — actor, born in Sidcup.
- Steve Clement-Large — artist, grew up in Sidcup - now resident in Plymouth. Creator of "Argyle Man".
- Jason Crowe — footballer, born in Sidcup.
- Ian Davenport — artist, born in Sidcup.
- Ashley Glazebrook — dancer, part of Twist and Pulse.
- Steve Hillier — musician, schooled in Sidcup.
- Will Hutton — economist, schooled in Sidcup.
- Alfred Garth Jones — illustrator died in Sidcup in 1955.
- John Paul Jones — bass guitarist of Led Zeppelin, born in Sidcup.
- Rob Knox — actor, murdered in Sidcup.
- Ivan Magill — innovative anaesthetist, worked in Sidcup.
- Clive Mendonca — footballer for Charlton Athletic, lived in Sidcup
- Lee Murray — former kickboxer and mixed martial arts champion, wanted for Securitas depot robbery, lived in Sidcup.
- Emma Noble — glamour model, born in Sidcup.
- Mike Rann — Premier of South Australia, politician, born in Sidcup, lived in Blackfen prior to emigrating to New Zealand with his parents.
- John Regis — Olympic athlete, lived in Sidcup.
- Keith Richards — guitarist Rolling Stones, attended college in Sidcup
- Wayne Routledge — footballer, born in Sidcup.
- Ethel Smyth — composer and Suffragette, born in Sidcup.
- Roderick Spode — fictional politician and fashion designer, was the 7th earl of Sidcup in the Jeeves stories by P. G. Wodehouse.
- Jim Staples — International Rugby Union captain, educated in Sidcup.
- Dick Taylor — founder member of The Pretty Things and early bass guitarist in the Rolling Stones, schooled in Sidcup.
- John Topham — photographed daily life around Sidcup from 1931 - 1973.
- Thomas Townshend, 1st Viscount Sydney — died in Sidcup.
- Mark Ricketts — footballer, born & raised in Sidcup.
- Charles Warrell - alias Big Chief I-Spy (Author of the children's "I-Spy" books) - Lived in Sidcup circa 1950.
- Gordon Watson — former Sheffield Wednesday footballer, born in Sidcup.
- Elizabeth Wiskemann — journalist, born in Sidcup.
- Doug Wright — cricketer, born in Sidcup.
- Anthony David Mills (2001). Oxford Dictionary of London Place Names. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-280106-6.
- Hasted, Edward (1797). The History and Topographical Survey of the County of Kent: Volume 2. pp. 135–141.
- Mercer 1994, Introduction.
The phrase of much resort means much frequented or visited.
The Black Horse is now used for adult education.
- Vision of Britain "Foots Cray UD". A Vision of Britain through Time.
- Vision of Britain "Sidcup CP/AP". A Vision of Britain through Time.
- "New-look Sidcup High Street after £1.8 million regeneration". Newsshopper. 15 September 2014. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
- "Anniversary of Mick Jagger and Keith Richards Dartford meeting". BBC News Kent. 17 October 2011. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
- "Sidcup Symphony Orchestra". Retrieved 24 August 2015.
- Lusher, Adam; Sawer, Patrick (24 May 2008). "Harry Potter actor Robert Knox stabbed to death protecting his younger brother". telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
- "Man guilty of Potter actor murder". BBC News. 4 March 2009. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
- Christie, Sam (12 June 2013). "Mum of Sidcup knife victim Rob Knox 'not surprised' by high weapon crime in Dartford". newsshopper.co.uk. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
- Griffiths, Josie (15 August 2015). "Church bench tribute to murdered Harry Potter actor, Sidcup's Rob Knox". newsshopper.co.uk. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
- TFL Bus Route Map from Sidcup
- "Steve Clement-large".
- Glendinning, Lee (24 May 2008). "Harry Potter film actor stabbed to death". theguardian.com. Retrieved 24 August 2015.
- "Knocker-up armed with a pea shooter". EDP24 (Eastern Daily Press online). 5 August 2009.