South East London

Conservation of the Painted Hall: Phase one the West Wall
HLF has awarded grants worth a total of £122.4m to projects in South East London*, or £181.69 per resident.

The value of individual grants awarded has varied, ranging from £25m for the Cutty Sark Conservation Project, to £3,000 for Tudor Workshops for the Old Royal Naval College.


South East London has experienced rapid population growth in the last 20 years. It remains a diverse and densely populated urban area where levels of deprivation are above the national average – but they have fallen in recent years. Even so, unemployment is high and wages relatively low for those in work.

In common with other big cities in the study – Glasgow and Manchester – residents are more likely to say that their area has improved over the time they have lived there (54% compared with an average of 42% across the 12 places). They also believe their local heritage has improved – a slightly higher 60% said the quality of heritage sites had got better during their time living there. Only 4% felt that local heritage has deteriorated.

The heritage sites that were seen as having most benefit for local quality of life included some of the prominent heritage in historic Greenwich – the National Maritime Museum, the Royal Naval College and the Cutty Sark. Local parks – Southwark and Peckham Rye – were also favoured. 

Despite this, South East London residents are less likely than in other places to say they know a lot about their local heritage (28% compared with an average of 34%). South East London has the highest proportion of residents (8%) who say they know nothing at all about their local area’s heritage – and over a quarter say they know either nothing or only a little.

About the research

The research in London focused on three boroughs in the south east of the city – Lewisham, Greenwich and Southwark. Background data was collected to understand how this area has changed over the last two decades. 

350 residents living within 5km of Lewisham Town Hall – an area that covers all three boroughs – took part in a quantitative telephone survey to understand their attitudes towards the area and its heritage.

Heritage projects in South East London

The research project focused on the following heritage sites and projects, which are also reflected in this map.

*Grants awarded to projects in the South East London research area up to September 2013.

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