Architect: Austin Vernon & Partners

Giles Coppice
London SE19


Under offer

This wonderfully bright five-bedroom townhouse with double garage, private garden and balcony was designed by Malcolm Pringle of Austin Vernon & Partners in the mid-1960s, and offers excellent accommodation in a fantastic location. The house sits within the well-maintained private grounds of Giles Coppice, and backs onto private woodlands.

Accommodation is over three floors and in its original configuration, with four bedrooms, a living room, a kitchen/dining room, study and two bathrooms.  Entrance is to a wide hall, where there’s a study (or fifth bedroom), WC and large bedroom with en-suite bathroom. The main living areas are positioned on the first floor, with an 18ft-wide reception room at the front and a kitchen/dining room at the back. An expanse of doors and windows that run almost the width of the building, create peaceful views of the private woodland, and give access to the decked terrace and stairs to the private garden. The top floor has three further bedrooms, including the master bedroom and second bathroom.

The house retains several of its original details, including the banisters and balustrades as well as interior windows that flood the staircase with light. The house is heated by a warm air system as was intended by the architect. In addition, there are contemporary touches in the form of Vola bathroom taps and a Gaggenau gas hob in the kitchen.

The houses on Giles Coppice are some of the most admired on the Dulwich Estate, an area well known for its exceptional Modern architecture.

Crystal Palace, which is a 10-minute walk away, is a vibrant area with award-winning restaurants and bars as well as having a thriving arts and music scene. Features of the local area include Dulwich and Sydenham Golf Course, Crystal Palace International Sports Centre (with swimming pool) and numerous excellent parks and local woodlands. Dulwich Village is a 15-minute walk from the house and the street is well placed for OFSTED ‘outstanding’ primary and secondary state schools as well as some of the best private schools in London.

Giles Coppice is situated between two mainline stations (each approximately a 5-minute walk away) that offer fast and convenient travel to the centre of London. Sydenham Hill runs services to London Victoria (15 minutes), Blackfriars (20 minutes) and City Thameslink/Farringdon (22 minutes), and Gipsy Hill Station has direct rail links to London Bridge (23 minutes) and Clapham Junction (15 minutes). Crystal Palace station is also within walking distance (approximately 20 minutes). Connecting trains (via Sydenham) will take you to Canada Water in 20 minutes and Shoreditch High Street in 30 minutes. There are also excellent bus links to Central London.

Service Charge (maintenance of communal grounds): approx £240 per annum (paid quarterly)
Annual charges to Freeholders for the Dulwich Estate Scheme of Management: approx £94 per annum

Please note that all areas, measurements and distances given in these particulars are approximate and rounded. The text, photographs and floor plans are for general guidance only. The Modern House has not tested any services, appliances or specific fittings — prospective purchasers are advised to inspect the property themselves. All fixtures, fittings and furniture not specifically itemised within these particulars are deemed removable by the vendor.


Giles Coppice is situated in part of a large area of land in South East London that has been maintained for over 400 years by the Dulwich Estate. In the 1950s the estate ran into difficulty. The area had been badly damaged during the Second World War, and lease lengths were running so short that banks were no longer happy to lend on the houses and selling was becoming more and more difficult. People were leaving the area and renting their houses out.

In 1954, Austin Vernon & Partners were called on to design a scheme that would rejuvenate the Dulwich Estate. Vernon himself had formerly been a pupil at Dulwich College from 1898 -1901 and so knew this area well, whilst his uncle Frederick Austin Vernon (1882-1972) had already been the surveyor and architect to the Dulwich Estate.

By 1957 Vernon’s first scheme of building was completed. The blocks on Farquhar Road were the first to be built and they proved to be such a success that a second scheme began, encompassing the nearby Lymer Road and beyond. Over the next 20 years more than 2,000 new homes were designed by Austin Vernon & Partners, including those of Giles Coppice, resulting in a remarkable area of 1950s and 60s-era architecture.

The houses and flats were designed to a high standard, with use of large expanses of glass, open rooms and central heating. Also quite remarkable was the landscaping that was planned for the estate. The roads were separated from pedestrian areas and large areas were given over to communal gardens and spinneys. The result was an estate which was and remains beautifully designed, verdant and peaceful.

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Austin Vernon & Partners

Austin Vernon & Partners was established in 1948 when Russell Vernon (1916-2009) became a partner in the architecture practice of his uncle, Frederick Austin Vernon (1882-1972), who was the surveyor and architect to the Dulwich Estate. For several family generations, the practice had already been a successful commercial enterprise. Its architectural output, however, was rather traditional. Russell, who had studied at the Regent Street Polytechnic and worked for his great uncle, George Vernon (1870-1942), transformed it into a modern studio that over time has been appreciated for producing some of the highest-quality 1950s and 1960s housing in the country, as well as for the restoration of Dulwich Picture Gallery after bomb damage. Austin Vernon & Partners designed many different types of building in many different locations around the country, including the headquarters of Otis Elevators; a church and training centre for the Church Army; and an office for Lufthansa. Their greatest passion, however, was the Dulwich Estate, where they designed over 2,000 homes. Great care was taken to respond to the natural contours of site, surrounding tree heights and placement of existing trees.

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