& 1950'S BELOW


In our web section 'Selsdon - Our Area' (see tab at the top of the page) we gave a short summary of Selsdon's history. A fuller history of Selsdon and its community have been told in many articles over the past 70 years (with great historic and more recent photos too) in our community magazine 'The Selsdon Gazette'. The landscape, the buildings, the people, the wildlife. Sadly we don't have an index! 
This page highlights just a few:
Ted Frith -  Glimpses of Old Selsdon, Raymond Rowsell's Rowsell Chronicles and Des Donohoe's Selsdon Through the Eyes of a War Baby  

This page is by no means a complete list! Backcopies in print are held by The British Library.

"Selsdon and Farleigh, History and Archaeology.

A Planning application to Tandridge District Council was made to build a Crematorium on Green Belt farmland in Farleigh, just outside the Selsdon border, near the entrance to Farleigh Golf Club contained, in the plethora of drawings and documents, an Historic Environment Assessment . (the application was rejected) The document is attached here for potential interest to Selsdon residents.

Crem Area History.pdf Crem Area History.pdf
Size : 19889.494 Kb
Type : pdf
Selsdon Park - The History
This fascinating booklet was produced by the owner of the Selsdon Park Hotel in 1985. (Might contain inaccuracies)

Selsdon Park - The History - part 1.pdf Selsdon Park - The History - part 1.pdf
Size : 3632.891 Kb
Type : pdf
Selsdon Park - The History - part 2.pdf Selsdon Park - The History - part 2.pdf
Size : 3895.141 Kb
Type : pdf
WW2 - Resident memories

Ingham Road Bombing 1944 Gazette - March 2019.
Before and After Brian Alllen - Gazette - mid 1990s.
Christmas in Wartime Selsdon Raymond Rowsell - Gazette December 2007.

Saving Selsdon Wood - 10 years of fundraising. 

The campaign was a precursor at its inception, to later RSPB bird sanctuaries and the London Greenbelt. See also The Friends of Selsdon Wood Website for more information.

A few Notable 
saviours of Selsdon Wood (and their famous relatives) and also the date of the Selsdon Gazette Articles (online) that give the details.

  • Alice Mabel Bonus (1873-1938): Treasurer of Selsdon Wood Preservation Society (April 2022)

  • Anna Kingsford (1846-1888) (nee Annie Bonus’ aunt of Alice Bonus): Famous Author, campaigner, Doctor, ambassador, influencer (April 2022)

  • Isabel Bonus (1857-1941) (sister of Alice Bonus): Artist and collaborator of books with famous M.E.M Donaldson photographer (April 2022)

  • Sir Lawrence Chubb (1873-1948) Secretary of the Selsdon Wood Preservation Society, The National Trust, The Commons and Footpaths Preservation Society and helped the National Playing Fields Association (May 2022)

  • Malcolm Grahame Sharpe (1868-1948) Chairman of the Selsdon Wood Preservation Society, architect, also key campaigner in preserving Croham Hurst, Purley Beeches, South Hawke, Woldingham and Kenley Common, Littleheath Wood and compiler of rights of way. (June 2022)

  • Ernest Alfred Earl (1874-1954): Solicitor and Executive Member of the Selsdon Wood Preservation Society (June 2022)

  • Arthur M F Beadell (1872-1957): Local naturalist and “leading light” in saving Selsdon Wood (June 2022)

  • Winifred Mary Hudson (1878-1973): Executive member of the Selsdon Wood Preservation Society, Mathematician (Her sisters, aunt, mother, father and brother were also outstanding at Mathematics) (July 2022)

  • Hilda Phoebe Hudson OBE (1881-1965) (Sister of Winifred Hudson): Famous mathematician and pioneer in work on prevention of infectious diseases and improving the design of WW1 aircraft wing design. (July 2022)

  • Early RSPB Story 1889– The Croydon origins of the society ensured strong support for a pioneering bird sanctuary in Selsdon (October 2022)

  • Etta Lemon MBE (1860-1953): Famous Pioneering RSPB campaigner, war hospital manager, Magistrate (October 2022)

  • Sir Julian Sorell Huxley (1887-1975) – Famous Scientist, bird watcher and supporter of the Selsdon Wood Campaign, ‘brain of Britain’. (April 2023)

  • William Coker Iliffe – newspaper magnate, resident of Farleigh, supporter of the Selsdon Wood Campaign (April 2023)

This article from Ted Frith (see Glimpses of Old Selsdon) is a copy of a document that he wrote when he was President of Croydon Natural History Society and which was originally published in the magazine of the Friends of Sydenham Hill Wood. It is about the origin of the name of Croydon and its link to the natural history of the area.

1988 - 2002 Croydon Country Show

The first Forestry Show, as it was then called, was held in The Great Field of Selsdon Wood (The Bird Sanctuary). The purpose was to show off the Council's new equipment and to explain what actions the Council were taking after the storm of 1987 that had brought down so many trees.

The show continued as an annual event, later called the Country Show, until 2002. Over the years it grew enormously with even fairground rides in the later years. However it  became product of its own success, growing too big for the site. There were safety concerns over access for emergency services, traffic and parking problems, the risk of damage to the environment from so much heavy equipment and escalating costs so it was decided that there should be no further shows after 2002. (The photos in the gallery below were all taken by Selsdon resident Ray Rowsell at the final show in August 2002 and indicate what a massive (and much loved) event it had become.)

Home Guard Dinner 1944

Note that many of the dishes served have names linked to the locality:-) A similar sense of humour was shown in the programme for an event 2 weeks later - sadly the quality of the image is not quite adequate to show the cartoons. (thanks to Ian Leggatt)

This obituary of Derek Sharman who died in December 2017 was written by his brother Michael. The document also includes the story of one of Derek's youthful adventures, his trip to France with friends in an old London Taxi. This trip was written about in the Gazette in 1954 and the full text of that report is included in the document alongside photographs and background information.
Thanks to Victoria Sharman for this photograph of her dad.

Kingswood Way and Bridleway 155

Robert Fairbrother. A text only version of the article (without references) was published in the November 2017  issue of the Gazette.

This obituary for Malcolm Sharpe was published in the Selsdon Gazette in June 1948. This fulsome tribute shows his involvement in the protection of many green spaces in the Selsdon & Sanderstead area including Croham Hurst, Littleheath and Selsdon Wood. (Thanks to Ted Frith for supplying this.)
This article from the December 1972 issue of the Gazette is an account by Tom Price of his adventures when commuting by Green Line in pre-war times. (Thanks to Ted Frith for supplying this.)