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Town & Country: With £795,000 to spend, would you choose Camberwell or Chilham?

Thriving: Camberwell

Town

■ ARTY, edgy and friendly, Camberwell’s less expensive than Brixton and Clapham, and its period architecture is widely acclaimed. Victorian terraces abound and Camberwell Grove is one of the capital’s finest Georgian streets. ‘Younger professionals love Camberwell because of the proximity to the City without the high prices, and there are plenty of students due to the major hospitals and arts college,’ says Brett MacDougall of Hunters. ‘We’re starting to see a rise in the number of families coming in as schools improve and Georgian and Victorian homes are brought to the market at better prices than many of their south London counterparts. One-bed flats can be snapped up for about £260,000 and you’re generally looking at around £750,000 as a starting point for a three-bed period house.’

Camberwell

3-bed house, £775,000


Tasteful terrace: A Victorian mid-terraced house with a through reception room featuring two exposed brick fireplaces, a good-sized kitchen/diner, cellar and a loft space that’s ripe for conversion. Hunters

Commute time: 12 mins from Denmark Hill to Victoria or Blackfriars

Commute cost: Annual Travelcard £1,364

Price per sq ft: £629

Country

Picturesque: Houses in Chilham village

■ THIS unspoiled village is secluded but far from remote, as it’s only 20 minutes from both Canterbury and Ashford, and the M2 and M20 are within easy reach. It’s flanked by a privately-owned Jacobean castle and a medieval church, and narrow lanes packed with timbered houses lead up to a central square that had a starring role in the BBC’s adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma. ‘Not a lot of people know about Chilham, as it’s not somewhere they drive through,’ says Rhyss Sawyer of Miles & Barr. ‘It has shops, pubs, a tea room and station. There’s a primary school in Chartham, the next village, and there are grammar schools in Canterbury. Properties range from two-bed period cottages, starting at around £280,000 to £300,000, to big detached houses.’

Chilham

5-bed house, £795,000


On the hop: The perfect marriage of old and new, this sizeable converted oast house includes the original hop press, kiln doors, exposed timbers and brickwork, plus underfloor heating and CAT6 cabling. Strutt & Parker

Commute time: About an hour to St Pancras International

Commute cost: Annual season ticket £6,108

Price per sq ft: £180

…or why not get 2 for the price of 1?

Camberwell

One-bed flat, £425,000, Wooster & Stock

This peaceful flat is on the second floor of a detached Victorian house, set back from a tree-lined street full of impressive period homes. The open-plan reception room enjoys views over south London’s rooftops and is linked to the kitchen area by a wide breakfast bar, and there’s a double bedroom and a neat white bathroom. Communal areas are pristine, and the property comes with a share of the freehold and a huge, 160ft shared garden.

Chilham

Three-bed house, £339,950, Miles & Barr

Built in 1895, this end-of-terrace cottage has been extended and modernised by the current owner. The downstairs layout is mainly open plan and includes a conservatory and shower room, while upstairs, all the bedrooms are doubles. The master is big enough to be split into two separate rooms and the loft has been fitted with Velux windows, ready for conversion. Running costs are low, as solar PV panels provide free electricity and could generate an income of about £1,600 per year.

Total spend £764,950