Thames Tributaries – the River Wandle
The Bourne tributary runs through this area, roughly following the Brighton Road
Post to the south Smitham
Post to the east Kenley
Once this whole stretch of road was Smitham, or Smithden, Bottom. It was a dangerous stretch and included a gibbet for local highwaymen.
The Bourne flooded in 1930 and the road was under water between Old Lodge Lane and Stoats Nest.Town Hall. Offices of the Coulsdon and Purley Urban District Council, in red brick, 1928-30 by W B Nicholl and B. Hughes and planned around a garden courtyard. Listed grade II as also are railings outside.
Air raid shelters for the Town Hall
88 Telephone Exchange92 Regal Cinema. Part of the ABC chain opened in 1934. The architect was Harold Scott. It had a café with oak sinks, which was used later by a dance school. There was a cinema cat. It became a bingo hall in 1978 and closed in 1998. It has been demolished and the site is now shops, but some of it remains within the telephone exchange.
Fitness First was the site of the Ice Rink which. Became the Orchid Ballroom in 1960 and closed in 1973. Many famous pop music acts played there.
The Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Tramway ran west of Downlands Road, but crossed to the east side roughly half way down going through the footpath which crosses it and continues the Downlands Road, moving again to the west side and reach Smitham Downs Road west of the junction.
The Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Tramway ran just to the south of it.
Old Lodge Lane
Reedham Station. Opened 1911. Between Purley and Smitham on Southern Trains. Built as a halt on the Tattenham Corner line near the Reedham Home for Fatherless Children and opened for visitors to the orphanage. 1936 proper station built.
Sidings for the orphanage were on the up side
Anti tank concrete cubes along the railway line
Old Lodge Farm stood near where the tennis courts are in the park. It was owned by the Halls, lime works owners, and grew wheat which was processed at Beddington Mill, swedes and mangolds grown there were sent out via Stoats Nest Goods Yard. The farm land stretched from the Orphanage to Caterham Drive.
Cottages opposite the farm were owned by the Orphanage and lived in by their workers.
Named from the Reedham Orphanage which is marked as “Reedham Asylum” on the Ordnance Survey map of 1878. It had been founded in 1856 by the Revd Andrew Reed and demolished in 1980.
Reedham Asylum for Fatherless Children. Sited south and east of the railway and named after its founder, Rev. Andrew Reed, who set up the foundation in 1844, one of several such projects he was involved in. The school was originally in Richmond and moved here in 1858. It was renamed Reedham Orphanage in 1904 and Reedham School in 1950. It was closed in 1979 but the Trust continues to fund those in need. The amazing Victorian buildings were demolished, apart from the Lodge.
Smitham Downs Road
The Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Tramway crossed the road from Downlands Road, to the west of the junction.
The Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Tramway ran to the east of South Drive.
Stoats Nest Road.
Stoats Nest Station. Opened 12th July 1841 on the London and Brighton Railway at the North side of the railway line. In 1856 it closed and was replaced by a new station to the south. Remains of it could be seen on the down side before the junction with Tattenham Corner branch
The Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Tramway crossed the site of the Drive after crossing Smitham Downs Road and the Vale and then followed the line of the road. It left before the junction with Drive Mead
The Croydon, Merstham and Godstone Tramway crossed what is now Smitham Downs Road and then crossed the line of the Vale.