Founded in 1926

The Association was first formed in 1926 and began life as the Sanderstead Rate Payers Association. Its founder members had recollections of pre 1914-18 Sanderstead. One of its members was Edith Harrison who had lost her husband and a son in the Great War. During the war Edith was the house chairman of the Sanderstead Belgian Refugee Committee which provided accommodation for Belgians forced to leave their homes by the advancing German invaders.

100 years ago

The pre 1914 Sanderstead village was very different from the area we know today. It was surrounded by seven farms owned by the Atwood family; Lords of the Manor from 1600 to 1919 who lived in Sanderstead Court, which was demolished in 1957 after fire damage. The farm workers lived in tithe cottages, thus the population of about 300 remained small, living in less than 100 houses. All Saints Church was built on earlier foundations in 1230 and our history can be traced to pre Anglo Saxon times.

The Growing Village

The start of the change of Sanderstead from rural area to suburb could be identified as the 10th March 1884 when Sanderstead Station was opened by the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway for their Croydon to East Grinstead line built in 1882. There were already South Croydon and Purley Oaks Stations so the remaining plausible name for the station was Sanderstead. A mile's walk up Sanderstead Hill was required to reach the village until the bus service was introduced in 1921.

From 1905 life in the northern part of the parish changed rapidly with “quality homes for the middle classes” being built along Mayfield Road, Heathhurst Road, the home of Edith Harrison, and along Sanderstead Road to Sanderstead Hill. From here we were in farmland.

The Parade Arrives

There was further housing development between the wars moving up Sanderstead Hill. A parade of shops was built in the Village with more housing creeping along to Hamsey Green. It was not until 1958 to 60 that the Fox Farm was developed for housing, with shops at Elmfield Way and The Ridgeway School.

Further Reading

If you are interested in reading more about the history of Sanderstead, The Bourne Society, our local history society, has published several books on the subject, including:

  • Sanderstead - Village Histories no 3. Edited by Joy Gadsby
  • If Stones Could Speak - History from Sanderstead Churchyard. By Joy Gadsby
  • Sanderstead Servicemen and Civilians who died in Two World Wars. By Brian Roote
  • Villagers - Five Shillings. By Harley Sherlock
All these are available from the Bourne Society Website


If you have any matters that you wish to bring to the attention of the SRA, please get in touch with the Chairman, Heather Lindsay, via email: [email protected], or by phone, 020 8657 2661.


Subscriptions are due by the end of January each year. If you wish to become a member, please download the form available on the members page and contact the Hon. Treasurer, John Kempsell, email: [email protected], phone, 020 8657 0482.


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