Orlop Street

Scott asks:

I’m thinking of buying a little house on Orlop Street. The street looks quite quaint, but what kind of reputation does it have now? I know that the orlop deck is the lowest deck of a ship with four or more decks and wondered if that were still indicative of the area today, or whether things have gone more upmarket. The prices, although relatively cheap compared to other parts of Greenwich, would suggest the latter, which is quite ironic considering how little money the original inhabitants must have earned.

I’d also like to know more about eastern Greenwich in general, i.e. pubs, shops, people, community spirit, crime etc.

The fact that we’d be close to the river, train station and park, yet away from the touristy part has great appeal, but I’d love some reassurance that I’m doing the right thing from someone (or people in the comments) who know the area well. Coming from Finsbury Park, it feels like a massive change, and almost a different city.

The Phantom replies:

There were several streets round East Greenwich named after parts of a ship – spare a thought for the poor residents of Frigate Street who, in the 1960s had become so far removed from the concept of shipping that they thought the name was rude and campagined to have it renamed the much more genteel Feathers Place. As far as I am aware there is no Poop Street. Now there is a name I’d campaign about.

It’s true that the Orlop is the lowest deck of a ship and there was a time when this charming little one-sided back street, running parallel to Traf Road was home to some of the ‘lowest’ residents in Greenwich Society, though Charles Booth was apt to be a little kinder.

These days, like all of the Pelton Road area, it’s all got a hell of a lot more gentrified and therefore, as you’ve noticed, expensive. East Greenwich still has a long way to go before it reaches Royal Hill or Ashburnham Triangle fancyness, but I really like the rough-around the edges feel it still has and we may well start to see more shops and facilities opening when the Heart of East Greenwich development starts getting residents.

I love East Greenwich – the people are generally friendly, the pubs are good (especially the Pelton and the Vanbrugh, jury’s still out on the new-look King Billy, nearest you, the only time I ate in there the food was okay, but my pal and I were entirely alone for the entire experience and the lighting felt very harsh, but I’d be willing to try it again) as you point out you’re close to the rivier and transport.

I don’t know what the configuration is inside the houses – some of those below-street level basements have been filled in, others haven’t – no idea how it is on flooding etc, though there are basements on bloomin’ Ballast Quay, mere yards from the river; it can’t be that much of an issue.

The only thing I would want some confirmation on, preferably from someone actually living in Orlop Street or knowing someone who lives there, would be the effect of being one-sided with shops backing onto your front door, and how that would affect noise levels, commercial bin-emptying and, at night, chaps who’ve been ahem, ‘caught short’ on their way home from the pub…

So – Orlop Street experiences please, folks…

the attachments to this post:

Plop street
Plop street

30 Comments to “Orlop Street”

  1. Mary says:

    From where I stand Orlop has one big problem – which is that it is owned by a Housing Association, not the Council. You might think that is ok – but – it means that all those things on roads which the Council does that people on the whole take for granted sometimes become a problem. However – it always seems to me to be a friendly little street, and people know each other,.

  2. Miffee says:

    In my memory, Feathers Place replaced Eastney Street in the 70s. It is where one of the old Roan School buildings used to be.

  3. Capability Bowes says:

    What is this? An episode of one of those awful “property porn” TV programmes like “Location Location Location”??????

  4. Miffee says:

    Thank you Phantom, I seem to have missed out a stage in the life of this street! A much used one on the way to and fro the Plume.

  5. Ros says:

    I used to live on Orlop Street until very recently (2009-10). One of the street signs got changed to “Plop Street” by some young scamps and the name has stuck in my head. One of the main problems was that people would dump rubbish and generally fly-tip around the communal bins. I don’t know if that is sorted out now?

    Also I had a very noisy neighbour – so noisy I once had to call the police. The noise from Trafalgar Road wasn’t too bad and it is very handy for everything which makes up for noisy neighbours.

    I left Plop Street with a sour tasste in my mouth as I was getting the flat cleaned and the non-English speaking cleaners didn’t realise they couldn’t park their van in Plop Street itself so the a friendly neighbour got them clamped. (I have no idea if they tried to explain that they should move and couldn’t make themsleves understood or not but to me, it seemed they prefered to call out the security company and cause unnecessary expense and stress).

  6. Ros says:

    Sorry for all the mistakes in my comment! I am sneakily commenting at work so in a rush!!

  7. Chris says:

    Well done the young scamps. Plop Street. Love it.

    Lower Addiscombe Road in Croydon is still known to me and my friends as the Owe Disco Road due to someone’s judicious use of spray paint!

  8. Plop Street. There’s something so fabulously juevenile about it. It will now be Plop Street in my mind for ever more.

  9. I may even change the title of this post, just for the hell of it…

  10. Ros says:

    Love it! We always call it Plop Street – I have proof in the form of a picture

  11. Can I use it? Can I use it? Please?

  12. Yay! I think I was about six years old when I last found the word ‘plop’ funny…

  13. Mrs M. says:

    This bit of East Greenwich is certainly on the ‘up’. We have the new French Delicatessan, to add to the already excellent Italian Deli, plus new Galleries and Restaurants and Take Aways. The Bianco Pizzeria on the corner of Orlop is great as well as the Mogul takeaway. A fun way to spend Saturday morning is bidding for stuff you didn’t know you wanted at the Auction rooms.
    Live music at the Pelton can’t be beaten and the new upgraded Cutty Sark pub is also always busy.
    The general area seems much tidier over the past few years but like all of East Greenwich still room for improvement.
    Orlop Street has some friendly residents and is a mix of owner occupier, rental, and housing association property – like all the surrounding streets.
    All the benefits of a great location, near the Park, The Thames and the centre of Greenwich without the West Greenwich prices.

  14. TPlautus says:

    The Plop Street sign will look even nicer when they replace it with a Royal Borough of Greenwich one.

    “much tidier over the past few years but like all of East Greenwich still room for improvement.” Not too much, I hope. The charm of EG is its tattiness and its continuity with its working class past. It’s great to live somewhere where snotty kids can still run around and transform street signs in a rude manner. That’s assuming it wasn’t their mums who did it.

  15. scared of chives says:

    “This bit of East Greenwich is certainly on the ‘up’.”

    Is it, really? Count the closed shops – I think there may be even more now than, say, a year ago. There are three in a row.

    King William Hotel is empty (what does that tell you?). The Italian deli has been there years and the French one doesn’t seem quite as bust as it was a while back.

    Would love to think it’s on the up but not convinced.

  16. Old China says:

    Ha, Plop Street. Amazing!

    East Greenwich is generally a great place to live, although can’t comment on Plop street specifically.

    Re: The King William Hotel, it’s such a shame that so much time and effort went into renovating a place that no one wants to go to. I went in once (on the opening night) and left without buying anything due to their extremely poor beer selection. I’ll be sticking to the usual haunts.

  17. I just find it very bright inside – if they lowered the lights a little I’d feel a little less like I was in a re-staging of ‘Nighthawks.’

  18. 16" East says:

    What i love about Greenwich is that when we talk about it having a
    Slightly edgy side its really nothing compared to the ‘proper’ edgy (ie: downright dangerous!) other bits of London. Friends were raving about trendy edges of Clapham and Hackney “except for the perpetual threat of violence at any moment”. Glad to be here frankly.

  19. Scott says:

    Thank you all for the info. Seems to be some debate on whether it’s on the up or not. Having spent a couple of lazy afternoons in the area (mostly in the Pelton, Cutty Sark and The Vanburgh), I found the area to have a certain charm and character, much more so than the west side. I hope this doesn’t change too much in the future. Compared to Finsbury Park/ Archway it’s positively quaint in feeling. I like it a lot.
    Although I’m sorry to say that the Plop Street house plopped, but am now considering an offer on a slightly bigger place on Woodlands Park Road. So, Woodlands Park Road?

    Thanks again, and hopefully I’ll be a resident soon.

  20. Scott says:

    Mrs M, The Cutty Sark pub was closed upstairs, and will completely close for a couple a weeks for a ‘face lift’ soon. I hope they don’t radically change it.

  21. Nelson's Left Eye says:

    Woodlands Park Road is just fine too. Ridiculously handy for trains and buses, a decent mixture of residents, a great local in the Vanbrugh (which you obviously know about already), a few mins from our wonderful park and only a short walk from everything else you’ll need.

    Beautiful houses too which will become a superb investment when house prices start taking off again (if they haven’t already).

  22. Scott says:

    Thanks for replying, one eye. Being so close to the station, park etc. is why we’ve decided to spend a bit more. Waiting to see if our offer is accepted.

  23. Mrs M says:

    The Cutty Sark was closed last year for a month or two for complete refurbishment. Wonder what they are doing now?

  24. Mrs M says:

    Check square footage of Woodlands Park Rd house. We looked at several a few years ago and only the ones with the converted loft were “bigger”. Nice location though.

  25. Chris says:

    Really interesting thread everybody, especially for us as I fear we are the ones who have made Scott’s plans plop by having an offer accepted on a house in Orlop Street – sorry Scott but best of luck with Woodlands Park Road, hope that one works out for you.

    Let’s of great positive stuff about the road and the area but we are a bit concerned about Ros’s comments above about the potential noise problems. Our one reservation after viewing the house a couple of times is that it is quite confined and, with the slightly odd one sided street arrangement, that it might be a bit noisy. Ros (or anyone else who lives on or near Orlop) we’d be incredibly grateful for any more info on potential noise issues, reassuring or otherwise!

    Btw, totally agree with the comments on the King Will, just fitting a dimmer switch could make that place a whole lot more welcoming. At least there are plenty of other great choices nearby.

  26. Scott says:

    Yeah, not a lot bigger, but do feel bigger, and have a garden. Met full asking price, buy owner is now in two minds on whether to sell!

  27. Mrs M says:

    A long time resident of Orlop told me that a few years ago there was one particular family with young teenagers who were problematic. The good news is that they have either moved away or the teenagers have grown up!
    The strange set up means that the residents are shielded from noise from Trafalgar Rd (although of course police sirens penetrate everywhere including Woodlands Park Rd). Double glazing helps of course.
    Orlop will be a bit messy before the refuse collection on Monday. The good news is no nasty plastic bins in front of the houses.
    I think there was a post a couple of years ago on The Phantom about the street being some sort of red light district full of thieves and worse but that was in the early 1900′s as I recall?

  28. Mrs M says:

    Good luck on the house. Main problem is that there is very little on the market locally so in order to get a slightly bigger place or one in a “better” location prices move upwards by hundreds of thousands so people remain stuck in houses that may not suit their changing circumstances. Greenwich (both sides) is such a unique and fantastic location that no one wants to move away.
    We could all buy a Georgian rectory with an acre of garden in some parts of the UK but we are all still here. I guess we are all daft or just bewitched by our surroundings.