Housing coming to Abbey Wood telephone exchange site

Abbey Wood’s brutalist telephone exchange will be pulled down for housing once Crossrail vacate part of the site in 2019 according to Greenwich Council planning documents.

The council state the exchange (often called Thamesmead exchange despite being in Abbey Wood) is apparently surplus to requirements – though I still see BT vans in the car park so I’m not sure how accurate that is.

Anyway, here’s a screenshot:

The site is beside and behind the recently refurbished Abbey Arms pub. It wouldn’t be a great surprise if a developer were to attempt combining both sites into a single development. The pub is not listed.

Courtesy Abbey Arms. Rear pub garden with exchange behind

I don’t want to worry people though as I doubt anything is imminent.

The council state:

“This is an area identified in the Core Strategy as potentially suitable for
tall buildings, however, the impact on low-rise traditional residential
development in the vicinity of the site must be considered. Mid-rise
development of 4-8 residential storeys would generally be appropriate.” 

Other sites of interest include Lyndean Industrial Estate becoming mixed-use. The current site makes more sense as housing given proximity to Abbey Wood station.

The site has long struggled to attract businesses to all units. Some businesses could move into units in new mixed-use blocks with others potentially moving to new units being built in Thamesmead.

The document has other mentions of Abbey Wood but contains errors. It states Cross Quarter is complete. Only Stage 1 with Sainsburys in complete. Stage 2 – with hundreds of homes – has not progressed since 2015.




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J Smith

I've lived in south east London most of my life growing up in Greenwich borough and working in the area for many years. The site has contributors on occasion and we cover many different topics. Living and working in the area offers an insight into what is happening locally.

3 thoughts on “Housing coming to Abbey Wood telephone exchange site

  • I wonder whether there will be any similar changes at the telephone exchange site on Maze Hill? Combined with the Arches this could be a major development site

    • The document rules out similar at Maze Hill exchange

  • This is a silly question but where are the area telephone exchanges now located? IF this exchnage is closed. I know the Kidbrooke telephone exchange on Shooters Hill Road which deals with telephone codes 8856 and 8319 is still in use.

    To be honest I thought all other telephone exchanges were the same and still being used including the Abbey Wood/Thamemead exchange covering 8310 and 8311 telephone codes. Happy to be corrected.

    I do feel this site when it become available would be better used soley for housing with buildings of about 4 to 8 floors rather than taller high rise towers.


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