From renting in Kent to a quick commute on the Elizabeth Line from Southmere

"Having commuted to Canary Wharf from Kent, the fact I’m now able to reach work in 11 minutes is truly amazing. A few years ago, I would never have believed I’d be living with such a quick travel to central London!"


Shared Ownership makes purchasing a property more affordable

Conrad was renting in Kent for six years, but tired of his commute into central London for work, he began looking to purchase a home closer to the capital. 

He comments, “I work as a personal trainer in Canary Wharf, so travelling into London everyday was becoming quite tiring, I knew in the long term it wasn’t going to be sustainable. Towards the end of last year I began looking to move, but assumed I’d be priced out of London.” 

Having already owned properties in the past, Conrad spoke to his financial adviser about his options for purchasing a new home, who suggested Shared Ownership. Shared Ownership is a part buy/part rent scheme that makes it possible for buyers to purchase a property that otherwise would not have been affordable. It is a government-backed scheme launched in 2006 for people who are unable to afford to buy a home at full market value. 


When I heard about the Shared Ownership scheme it sounded like a great opportunity

“I had accumulated some savings during lockdown, and when I heard about the Shared Ownership scheme it sounded like a great opportunity for myself to get a foot back on the property ladder, particularly given my age. I was originally sceptical about being a leaseholder - I had real tunnel vision about wanting to own a freehold property, however, after doing some research I realised what I could get through Shared Ownership and it was a no brainer.”

Conrad found out about Southmere, the beginning of Peabody New Homes’ award-winning regeneration and ambitious masterplan for Thamesmead; a 30-year project which aims to attract 100,000 residents to this South East London neighbourhood. Southmere will eventually comprise over 500 homes while supporting both residents and the local community through a public square with a community library, shops and resident facilities.

Impressed by the development and high-quality specification of the apartments, he wasted no time in visiting Southmere to find out what was available – and ended up buying straight away.


The outdoor space and quick commute were also huge selling points

Homes are unapologetic in their high quality design and finish, with open-plan living/kitchen/dining areas that have been thoughtfully designed with clear zoned areas, while large windows allow vast amounts of light. Conrad purchased a 30% share of a one-bedroom apartment at Crane Court, the latest collection of homes at Southmere, with the location a huge draw for the personal trainer. He recognised the investment opportunity available at Thamesmead, while the outdoor space and quick commute were also huge selling points. 

He mentions, “I know a lot about the history of the area from previously living in London, and have seen Thamesmead develop with Southmere really transforming the area. It has become a fantastic place over the last few years and with the arrival of the Elizabeth Line it’s a complete gamechanger.” 

The exciting launch of the Elizabeth Line earlier this year has provided essential fast city centre-connections, with homes just a short walk to Abbey Wood station. Residents can travel on the Elizabeth Line and reach Canary Wharf in just 11 minutes, Liverpool Street in 17 minutes and Tottenham Court Road in 23 minutes†. This adds to the existing transport connections which link Abbey Wood to the rest of London. 


Homeowners at Southmere have the equivalent green space of four of London’s Royal Parks

Having lived in Kent, Conrad valued the outdoor space and greenery in the area, but didn’t expect to be able to have this near his future city home. “I love being in nature, and coming from Kent it was all about the outdoors for me. The fact I’m in proximity to amazing green space, lakes and canals, all while being in London, really ticked all the boxes.” 

At a staggering 240 hectares, homeowners at Southmere, can enjoy the equivalent green space of four of London’s Royal Parks combined – giving them access to London’s biggest back garden. Homes are also set alongside Southmere Lake, which is currently undergoing a £2.5m renovation to include a new fishing platform and Boat Club, offering paddleboarding and kayaking, sporting activities Chris is looking forward to trying in the summer months.  


Conrad plans to staircase until he owns the home outright

“All I can say is that I’ve had a really good experience. The Peabody New Homes team have been brilliant, answering all my questions and helping me along the way. I couldn’t be happier with my home. The finish of the apartment is fantastic and I really love that it’s brand new, with no previous owners. I’m already seeing the benefits of a new build – it feels so low maintenance compared to the other properties I’ve lived in.” 

Looking to the future, Conrad plans to staircase until he owns the home outright, where he hopes he’ll be able to leave a legacy for his son. 

Residents will also have access to impressive facilities, set to open in early 2023, offering exclusivity and value for money. A home at Crane Court includes access to an exclusive podium garden, and homeowners will benefit from purpose-built amenities including a concierge service, residents’ lounge, meeting rooms and workspaces. All amenities further support the well-being of residents by providing a space to escape, focus and socialise – welcoming a great new community in the capital.