Stop 31: Yester Road

Looking down to the railway bridge...
But the trains have changed!

Walden Road branches off from Willow Grove and extends eastwards towards Elmstead Lane. Both sides of the road have now been developed, but these were once the grounds of large estates including Walden Manor (later Waratah), Cranmore Place and Elmstead Grange. Lodges and older houses can be seen on the way. If you wish to take the detour to Elmstead Grange, you can do so via Walden Road.

Continuing along Willow Grove, Beechcroft on your left takes its name from the former home of the Vanner family who were so prominent in the development of the local Methodist Church. The house is still in existence; it became a convent and is now owned by The Unification Church. Spuriously called Livingstone House, it is a substantial ornate Victorian house with additions by Ernest Newton c.1898 (pictured right - the loggia faces south with magnificent views of much of Chislehurst).

At the top of Yester Road, note the attractive old walls of the former estate of Oakwood on your right, originally the home of George Medley Webb, a renowned chess player of his day. Note also the gate house at the entrance to Yester Park, which was the site of Walden Grange, home to Viscount Walden, who succeeded as the ninth Marquis Tweeddale in 1876, he was born in Yester near Edinburgh, but continued to live in Chislehurst until his death in 1878. This house should not be confused with Walden Manor, later named Waratah, in Walden Road.

Down the hill to your left was the former Victorian House, Greatwood, for some years a college but now an award winning estate of houses designed by architect Norman Sperring in 1960.
Turn left into Lubbock Road just before the railway bridge.
Alternatively, you can take a detour to Elmstead Grange, either via Walden Road, or under the bridge, turn and right again at the roundabout into Elmstead Lane, and right again after 400 yards into Grange Drive. Babington House School is on your left after 100 yards.