Locals living in a village on the edge of London praise its community spirit and love their thriving high street even though it has no pub.

Despite being part of a London borough since 1965 people in Sanderstead told the Local Democracy Reporting Service don’t feel like they live in the capital, or even Croydon.

Though it has a quaint high street, playground, church and picturesque pond, Sanderstead is missing one thing, a village pub.

This is said to be down to ancient covenants in place on the land which were issued by the original owners who disapproved of drinking alcohol.

Your Local Guardian: Sanderstead village has a mix of shops and cafes but no pubs thanks to a historic covenant.Sanderstead village has a mix of shops and cafes but no pubs thanks to a historic covenant.

However, Sanderstead locals think their village is fine without a pub.

Restaurants in the village are licences to serve alcohol and residents there are a few pubs two miles down the road in neighbouring Warlingham.

Mike Leach, 84, has lived in Sanderstead for 50 years. He said for a few years there was a pub in Hamsey Green, The Good Companions, which is part of the Sanderstead ward but never in the village itself.

He said: “There are pubs all the way round the outskirts but none in Sanderstead itself.

“I think possibly a few years ago it could have been a problem for people but nowadays pubs are not the central focus of villages.

"The centre of Sanderstead is very attractive it is got a nice recreation ground, it is a very pleasant village.”

Like any good village, Sanderstead has a thriving resident’s association of which Mr Leach has been secretary of for 20 years.

He added that the good schools attract people to the area as well as the beautiful countryside on the doorstep, including King’s Wood just behind the village.

Steve Jones,49, has lived in Sanderstead all his life and has run a pet shop in the Limpsfield Road, the village’s high street, for the past 20 years.

Your Local Guardian: Steve JonesSteve Jones

He said “It has a very villagey feel to it. When we were cut off a few years ago from the snow people really came together to help each other.

“I don’t feel like we are in Croydon or London here, though it feels Croydon is gradually creeping in.

"There are lovely open spaces and people come from far and wide to see the blue bells at King’s Wood.”

Murat Kurum manages Hardy’s Fish and Chip shop which has been in the village for the past five years.

Your Local Guardian: Murat KurumMurat Kurum

The 39-year-old lives in Shirley but thinks there is a stronger sense of community in Sanderstead.

He said: “It is a very family orientated place and it has got a very strong community, people really watch out for each other and help each other out.

"People here feel that we are too far from London to be part of it, sometimes I feel that we are more Surrey than London, it feels like the countryside in some places.”

Estate agent Ann Nelson has worked in Sanderstead for 12 years said people are attracted to the area for its good schools and green spaces.

She said: “People stay in Sanderstead and so we get people moving within the area but we also get people moving out here from London, it is lot cheaper than other areas.

"They can sell a flat in London and get a good sized house here.”

Niall McLoughlin, 70, lives in nearby Purley but wants to move to Sanderstead.

He described the village as ‘civilised’ but would like to see free parking changed from 40 minutes to an hour.

And Mr McLoughlin said he thinks the village is fine without a pub. He said: “It is a civilised area, the people are nice it’s not too crowded. You’ve got the duck pond, coffee shops – it’s just a nice area.”

Ward councillor, Yvette Hopley, has lived in Sanderstead her whole life and says the historic village is a place people stay for a long time.

She said: “Sanderstead is listed in the Doomsday Book, it has got a lot of history, we’ve got the ancient All Saints Church – it is a historic village. We’ve got fantastic open spaces, it is a great place to live and lots of families move here.”

And on the topic of no pubs in the village Cllr Hopley echoes the thoughts of other locals.

She said: “It is to do with a historic covenant on the land but it doesn’t bother us that there are no pubs. We’ve got restaurants that are licences and if you want a pub you’ve only got to cross into Warlingham.”

While Sanderstead village itself is relatively compact, the Croydon Council ward of Sanderstead covers the area up to Croham Hurst Wood and down to Hamsey Green.

In the 2021 census it had a population of 15,774.