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Tinie Tempah’s insider tips on the best places to shop, eat and explore around Blackheath and Greenwich

Rapper and property investor Tinie Tempah tells Amira Hashish what his childhood stomping ground has in common with Bel-Air

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<p>Tinie Tempah in Blackheath’s private Cator Estate where he used to imagine living one day </p>

Tinie Tempah in Blackheath’s private Cator Estate where he used to imagine living one day

/ Daniel Hambury/Stella Pictures Ltd
By
08 June 2022
W

ithin the Greenwich borough, Blackheath is the area that’s closest and most accessible to the rest of south London and the City. The borough is big and all of it was pretty much my stomping ground growing up.

Blackheath is the more aspirational side of the borough with large detached houses, a common parallel with Greenwich Park and a nice village. Then there’s a private estate that’s tucked away.

I used to drive down there with my friends and just look at all the houses and imagine myself living in one of them. Now I have a recording studio in the area.

A few years back my team and I met a distributor who was working out of a commercial yellow brick building and there was a free unit next door on the top floor. We took it, and the rest is history.

Best eating and drinking

The Cutty Sark pub on Ballast Quay by the river is great. There is an Ivy Cafe on Montpelier Vale too.

When I fancy food that feels a bit more homely, the Enish Nigerian restaurant is on the High Street in Lewisham and that’s not too far away. Morley’s fried chicken shop on Woolwich Road was a major part of my eating experience growing up. In fact, a lot of chicken and chip shops in the area were.

There’s the Odeon Cinema in Greenwich Peninsula and the Nando’s there is also a spot.

Where I work out

The Heath is a pretty amazing place to go for a run. It’s also adjacent to Greenwich Park, which is home to the Royal Observatory and has some incredible panoramic views of London.

I used to play a lot of football on Winn’s Common and Plumstead Common is always great for a run.

Blackheath common runs parallel to Greenwich Park, home to the Royal Observatory

/ Matt Writtle

For a culture fix

Blackheath Halls is a 600-capacity venue that hosts a bunch of music events. I’ve even promoted and hosted a night there where I booked MCs from east and north London at a time where it was still relatively underground for people from my area to enjoy.

About a 10-minute drive away is Woolwich and that is where I get my Nigerian food, outside of the home of course. It’s also where the church I attended growing up is, which has a strong African community presence.

There is Beresford Square Market in Woolwich too, which has an array of things to buy, from food, cultural products and clothes.

Blackheath Halls: a 600-capacity venue that hosts music events

/ Daniel Hambury/Stella Pictures Ltd

To commune with nature

Greenwich Park is always nice, especially when the sun is out. River Quaggy runs through Blackheath Park as well, where Weigall Road Sports Ground is.

Shrewsbury Park is near my childhood home in Plumstead and it has about 40 acres of forest. A bit further along there is Abbey Wood, which was a regular thing after school in the summer.

Grocery shopping

The Blackheath Pantry on Montpelier Vale is where I go to get my fresh produce. For a big grocery shop I’d say head to Charlton as it has all the major supermarkets and big car parks to make life a little easier. It also has an Ikea if you need to do a bit of furniture shopping.

The Blackheath Pantry on Montpelier Vale is Tinie’s go-to for fresh produce

/ Daniel Hambury/Stella Pictures Ltd

Getting around

I drive everywhere now but I used to get the bus 291 or the 53 everywhere.

Dream street

The Cator Estate is a private little enclave in the middle of Blackheath with imposing detached and semi-detached houses that are all different architecturally. It is idyllic. It used to feel like what I would have imagined a street in Bel-Air to look and feel like so for all these reasons I have always been obsessed.

Cator Estate: a private little enclave in the middle of Blackheath with imposing detached and semi-detached houses

/ Daniel Hambury/Stella Pictures Ltd

Something you only see in Blackheath

The traffic going through the Heath at peak times is unlike any other. It’s surreal to see this picturesque place with an almost village aesthetic during a gridlock on a Wednesday afternoon.

What’s the catch?

The distance between Blackheath and the centre of London can be tedious at times and when there’s traffic in Blackheath it can be a problem.

In three words

Hidden treasure home.

Tinie Tempah is investing in Strike, now available nationwide. To find out more about the free-to-use estate agency, visit strike.co.uk.

Schools

There are several primary schools in Blackheath rated outstanding or good, including John Ball, All Saints and Blackheath Primary School. For secondary options, Thomas Tallis School and St Matthew Academy are rated good by Ofsted. Blackheath High School GDST is an independent option.

What it costs to live in Blackheath

Buying

Average flat price: £480,590

Average house price: £1,053,050

Renting

Average flat price : £1,580 pcm

Average house price : £1,920 pcm

Source: Hamptons

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