Young families and professionals from South London are flocking to a ‘village’ on the edge of London.

Excellent schools and cheaper house prices are attracting new people to Carshalton in Sutton.

With its ponds and quaint high street stuffed full of independent shops and a handful of pubs, Carshalton feels like a traditional countryside village.

Your Local Guardian: Carshalton pondsCarshalton ponds

According to locals, the area is popular with people commuting to work in London with four trains an hour that will get you to Victoria in just 30 minutes.

Carshalton is within three miles of five of London’s best schools making it a popular place for people with young children.

In 2021, 34.8 per cent of households in Carshalton Central had children, up from 31.1 per cent in 2011.

The area bucks the national trend which has seen the number of households with children falling.

According to figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) between 2015 and 2020  Sutton experienced the second largest net inflow of children, aged up to 15, of all London boroughs

Simon Walsh is the director Silverman Blacks an estate agent in the village said the area has become more popular as a place to move to in the last decade.

Your Local Guardian: Simon WalshSimon Walsh

He said the “excellent” local schools and low crime attracts people to Carshalton.

Mr Walsh said: “People who lived in Balham and Clapham in their 20s who are in that next stage of life, with marriage and children look to Carshalton.

"Our house prices here are a bit more than half than in those areas.

“It is a genuinely nice place to live, I still remember the first time I drove through here by accident, I thought ‘where am I? This is really nice’.

There are a lot of green spaces and the transport into London is ridiculously easy, the train takes 28 minutes.”

The estate agent said the pandemic saw an influx of people moving to Carshalton as they looked for properties with gardens and more green spaces locally.

He said demand grew by 10 per cent in 2020 and another 10 per cent the following year.

According to Rightmove, the majority of sales in Clapham in the last year were for flats with an average price of £587,647.

This is almost double the average price for flats in Carshalton over the same period, which was just £297,174.

Local councillor for the area, Isabel Araujo, was one of the families to move to Carshalton during the pandemic.

She came from Wimbledon and said the area is “special”, particularly with her 12-year-old daughter and dog which she walks around the local parks.

She said: “What I think makes Carshalton special is you have that countryside feel and people still say hello when you’re walking down the high street.

"You have green spaces and affordable houses for London, you can get more for your money here.

“I don’t think we lack things for young people, for little ones apart from parks we have activities with the Homeywood Museum in the school holidays and quiet days for children with special needs.

"For teenagers we have sports courts in Carshalton park, it is full of young people, teenagers love the basketball court.

“Carshalton is really safe so parents don’t need to worry about their children, teenagers can go out by themselves.”

Cllr Araujo added that for young professionals moving to the area there are nine “amazing” pubs to choose from.

Miguel Rowlanes, 58, works at one of these, the Coach and Horses, and moved to the area seven years ago.

He said: “In here in particular we get a lot of regulars – it really feels like a community here.

“Although there is a main road going through it it is a still a village and it really has that feel.

"I know people here are worried about ULEZ, I don’t even think it will reduce traffic, when new parking restrictions came in last year it stopped some people coming in.”

Rick Wood moved to Carshalton from North West London a few years ago to be close to family.

The 40-year-old said: “It is a bit different to where I am from but I have found everyone quite warm. I think they could maybe hold a few community events that would bring everyone together.”

MP for Carshalton and Wallington, Elliot Colburn, has lived in Carshalton his whole life and says the demographic in the area has been changing with more young people moving to the area.

He would like to see more for young people and teenagers to do in the village, as well as better public transport connections.

The Conservative MP said: “I would say Carshalton has that village-like Surrey feel in many parts, particularly around the ponds and church while still being close to London. It is definitely a quieter suburb than other parts of London.

“It has been changing demographically over the past few years, for good reasons, it is an attractive place.

"As people are being prices out of inner London, Carshalton is a good place to come to.

“We’ve always been known for the schools in the area but often younger people decide to start their lives and families elsewhere.

"Now there is a trend to people looking to Carshalton especially in a post-Covid world where people are remote working more.

“I think recognising that there is a changing demographic there is a need to rethink services and what our local offer is.

"A lot of people feel like there is not a lot for young people to do, that’s one of the things that I get a lot, especially speaking to young families or school kids.”

Carshalton is also home to the Riverside Centre, funded through grants, which runs a youth clubskateboarding clubs and holiday camps.