Monday, 1 November 2010

How safe is Plumstead?

A reader has asked me for advice on Plumstead, specifically safety in the area.
I'm not sure I'm qualified to answer. When I first moved to the area 3 years ago, I was frankly horrified at the frequent sightings of Police noticeboards about crime, the lack of transport and the very run down high street. However, these have lessened in the intervening years - either the police don't put them up or the area is becoming safer.
When I go out, which is very infrequently at night, I make sure to take my car or if I don't have that, to return in a taxi as I wouldn't want to walk back to our house in the dark. Part over caution, part laziness.
My elderly neighbour was attacked just by Lenton Path, in broad daylight at 10am. Her purse was nicked and she was pushed to the ground. The gutless git who did it managed to make off with about a tenner. However, this is not something that is unique to Plumstead - attacks on vulnerable people happen all over London.

There area issues with the area:
Transport - while much improved by the DLR, could be improved further. Crossrail anyone
Lack of things to do in the afternoons or evenings - no decent pubs or restaurants. Perhaps this help keep prices down
A council that acts as if Greenwich borough doesn't include Plumstead

I do believe Plumstead is improving. Also we are very lucky with the amount of green space round here and are close enough to historic places such as Blackheath and Greenwich without suffering the traffic issues they have - Plumstead is a wonderful haven if you want to avoid tourists.
However, I would welcome other insights especially from people who have lived here a few years in order to give the reader a balanced view of safety and the area in general.


PlumBun said...

I think it is pretty safe. We have been here for a number of years now and I have never felt threatened. I do walk home after work from the station in the dark across the common. I think wherever you live you need a bit of caution but I think the roads are well lit and there are always people around. Most of SE London crime does tend to be (in fact make that most London crime) gang on gang so unless you are part of one and have wondered into the wrong postcode it seems fine to me. I also walk back from the pub and have done from the station after a night out.
I think it is a good area to buy in as you can generally buy a bigger property and therefore negate the need to move on as quickly. There is certainly a good community spirit around here that we have not always had before, possibly as there are still many locals and also more families.

Den Browne said...

It really does come down to local knowledge as PlumBun says. I lived at Plum Comm for 15 yrs. Whenever I visited friends/family in W London they'd always say "Oh it must be awful, there's so many murders etc" - but as you say, these tend to be gang-related (or in Peckham). I was never directly affected but there was a lot of fighting when the Ship was operating as the local drug market. I now live in leafy Richmond - & guess what? Its still the same as it was when I was growing up here in the 60s: idyllic 5 days a week, then at the weekend the place gets invaded by every herbert for miles around & its like the Wild West for 2 days.

mangocheeks said...

I live in Glasgow and often get similar questions. Glasgow has a large number of knife crimes. This is true. I think every place has its down points as well as its good points.

Plummy Mummy said...

Thanks for the feedback. So in all a thumbs up for Plumstead.

Glasgow - When we return to Scotland it's one of the cities we'd like to live in. The other is Edinburgh which also has it's crime problems. And yes, we worried about the knife crime as its the highest in Europe. But Glasgow is brilliant for shopping and food. Plus great for culture with the Museum of Modern Art, The Burrell Collection and for walking the nearby Loch Lomond. Lucky you!

Anonymous said...

Yep. We've been here a few years as well. We were in Clapham and Wimbledon before - got burgled in both and both had their fair share of hooded chavs (although not as many chav dogs)! Obviously both offered more in terms of bars, restaurants etc, although Clapham was getting so crowded by the time we left. We moved this way following most of our friends who found they could buy a house for the size of a flat. Definitely handy if you're planning a family as we can at least grow into the house rather than overcrowd a small flat!!
I get a cab back from Woolwich late at night after I've been out although that's less to do with safety than the bloody large hills in the area. When feeling less lazy I do walk and feel safe enough.

Anonymous said...

Huge thanks to you all for your comments. Sold! And as soon as our flat is, we'll be strolling on the Common!

All the best

Anonymous said...

I have lived in the area for 20 years and like fuond it no worse than any other area in fact a lot beter than most And lots of open Green space. The walk up from Plumstead Staion up Griffin Rd should be beter lit and wuoldnt it be nice if the station was manned all the time this is the one plus of the Dlr at woolwich.
I live at the Plumstead end of Wickham Lane and its 20 minite walk to Welling or Abbeywood station the are no buses that go from Wickham lane we have to get a bus to Plumstead or Woolwich Arsenal which meens that is quicker for us to drive to work.
My partner works at the QE hospital Kings highway is on a direct ruote to the hospital yet no buses go up this main road at all rather than drive she wuold rather go by bus but has to walk over 1 mile to get one so drives.
Will the higher powers please improve the buses from this point ranting Nick

Plummy Mummy said...

Hi Nick,
Yes agree buses from the Common could be improved.

Are you within walking distance of a 291 stop (I usually catch it on Garland Road opposite the Doctor's surgery) as this takes you to the hospital.

Anonymous said...

I've lived in Plumstead since 2006, and to be honest, I love it here. Despite the usual kids hanging around shop corners, it's not as menacing as some part of London, e.g. the East (and beyond Essex borders).

I live near Winns Commons, so it looks and feels like the countryside but in an urban setting. It's also very quiet and peaceful during the evenings.