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Linked to Fulham by Putney Bridge, genteel Putney is a classy west London suburb in the spirit of Kensington in everything but geographical location. It’s a very attractive place, filled with grand properties, fancy restaurants and standing on the south bank of one of the prettiest stretches of the Thames, it has a lazy, hazy atmosphere not unlike Cambridge.
Indeed, the suburb is filled with Pimms-sipping academics from Oxford and Cambridge every spring for one of the British sporting calendar’s best-loved days – the Boat Race, featuring a crew from each university slogging it out for annual bragging rights between Putney and Mortlake, watched by millions worldwide. There’s more than twenty rowing clubs based in Putney alone, and during the summer months, this section of the river is alive with the sound of oars splashing and coxes bellowing motivational words.
Putney Heath is unsurprisingly green and pleasant, home to some famous duelling history – British Prime Minister William Heath exchanged shots here in 1798 – and the Green Man (Wildcroft Road, 020 8878 8096), an olde-worlde real ale pub, one of the capital’s most traditional boozers. Another local landmark is the new music venue The Half Moon (93 Lower Richmond Road, 020 8780 9383, www.halfmoon.co.uk), which started as a folk and blues club in the early 60s patronised by Van Morrison and the Yardbirds; provided an important platform for the likes of U2 and Elvis Costello as they rose to rock infamy; and is now a beautifully airy hive of new music, both unplugged and electric. It’s also a favourite of local boys The Rolling Stones, who’ve regularly popped in for preview gigs, side projects and just the odd beer over the years.
Head to Putney Bridge Road and the High Road for characterful local shopping, including the big Exchange Centre (High Road, www.theexchangesw15.com) for upmarket high street names.
There’s tube stations at East Putney (District Line) and over the river at Putney Bridge (District Line), and Putney has an overground rail station.
|East Putney Station||2||District||0.56 miles|
|Putney Bridge Station||2||District||0.81 miles|
|Parsons Green Station||2||District||1.85 miles|
|Southfields Station||3||District||2.01 miles|
|Fulham Broadway Station||2||District||2.47 miles|
|Putney Station||0.17 miles|
|Barnes Station||1.85 miles|
|Wandsworth Town Station||1.97 miles|
|Barnes Bridge Station||2.73 miles|
|Clapham Junction Station||2.94 miles|