This district of south-east London lies just to the south of Dulwich. It was a remote rural district with few houses until the 17th century.
Then a medicinal spring was discovered in the district and as a result Sydenham soon became a fashionable spa area. But although this meant that the area attracted large numbers of visitors, Sydenham remained largely undeveloped.
This changed in the 19th century when first the canal, and shortly after the railway, reached the district. As London expanded Sydenham soon became a built up residential district.
At first the district was divided into two distinct areas. Upper Sydenham was popular with wealthy residents and had an elegant middle class feel to it, whilst Lower Sydenham was a working class area.
By the late 19th century however, the district had lost favour with London's wealthier residents and soon the whole of the area was a working class suburb. Today the area is a typical south London residential suburb.
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