Bush Hill

Bush Hill, Enfield

A name occasionally used to distinguish the vicinity of the road called Bush Hill (much of which runs along the eastern edge of Bush Hill Park golf course) from the larger settlement of Bush Hill Park in southern Enfield

Hidden London: Bush Hill Cottage by Christine Matthews

Few mod­ern maps still make the dis­tinc­tion between Bush Hill and Bush Hill Park although the two were sep­a­rate estates for sev­er­al cen­turies. The for­mer was the old­er of the pair but the lat­ter was the first to be sold for devel­op­ment and became the site of a sta­tion bear­ing its name. As a result, most res­i­dents now con­sid­er the whole area to be Bush Hill Park.

Sir Hugh Myd­del­ton acquired the Bush Hill estate while he was over­see­ing the cre­ation of the New Riv­er and rebuilt Bush Hill House around 1609. His heirs seem to have sold the estate by 1650. By 1664 Bush Hill House was the largest res­i­dence in the parish, assessed for 31 hearths.

Just east of Bush Hill Road, a sluice house was built on a gantry strad­dling the New Riv­er in 1796. Sluice gates were oper­at­ed from here to con­trol the flow of water over the Bush Hill frame. Shown in the pho­to below, the Bush Hill Sluice is now grade II list­ed.

Hidden London: Bushh Hill sluice, New River, by Julian Osley

The Tow­er, on Quak­ers Walk, is also grade II list­ed. Though it looks like a cross between a medieval defen­sive struc­ture and a water tow­er, it is in fact a 19th-cen­tu­ry res­i­den­tial fol­ly and is list­ed for its curios­i­ty val­ue.

Bush Hill House was recased in brick in the 1850s and leased to the ship­ping mag­nate Samuel Cunard.

At the end of the cen­tu­ry the south­ern part of the estate was sold for devel­op­ment, while the house (by then called Hal­li­wick) and its grounds became a girls’ board­ing school. From 1911 the school catered specif­i­cal­ly for dis­abled girls.

House­build­ing resumed in the Bush Hill area after the First World War with the lay­ing out of the New Riv­er estate. The first hous­es in Sit­ting­bourne Avenue and Faver­sham Avenue were occu­pied by 1926 and the mod­ern appear­ance of the local­i­ty was large­ly fixed by the mid-1930s.

The coun­cil put up some hous­ing in Halliwick’s grounds in the 1960s and the char­i­ty I CAN took over the col­lege in 1985 but closed it in 1993. By this time the house had been rebuilt to such an extent that almost noth­ing of the orig­i­nal man­sion remained and it was demol­ished to make way for Laing Homes’ Cunard Cres­cent.

Postal district: N21


* The picture of Bush Hill Cottage at the top of this page is slightly modified from an original photograph, copyright Christine Matthews, and the picture of the late 18th century sluice, New River, Bush Hill, is modified from an original photograph, copyright Julian Osley, both at Geograph Britain and Ireland, made available under the Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic Licence. Any subsequent reuse is freely permitted under the terms of that licence.