Peckham is a south eastern district of London that is now thriving, growing and extremely popular with residents. It was named after the River Peck, which was enclosed in 1823 and now is just a small stream where it appears. Over 72,000 people live in Peckham and many never leave – it’s even been named as the best place in London to live!
Since the 1990s, Peckham has received a great deal of regeneration and investment money from the European Union and as a result has grown in popularity and added in new and even award-winning amenities and facilities for residents.
If a diverse and vibrant neighbourhood sounds like your ideal homestay location, speak to the HFS London team to discuss options, requirements and host families.
Where is Peckham located?
Peckham sits in south east London, just three and a half miles south of Charing Cross, and forms part of the London Borough of Southwark. Situated wholly in postcode area SE15, Peckham sits to the east of Camberwell, south of the Willowbrook Estate, west of New Cross and north of Nunhead.
Peckham is largely residential but there’s also a commercial centre within the town, and strong transport connections to the rest of the city.
What’s the typical accommodation type in Peckham?
Property prices are rising in Peckham because of its recent accolades and developments, and so more residents than ever are offering homestay accommodation from their spare bedrooms to generate some extra income.
Within the district, there’s lots of Georgian townhouses and the more typical Victorian terraced houses, but with some new developments of apartments and conversions added in, as well as some estates of social housing. Several properties above commercial units (and now disused commercial units) have been converted into spacious flats.
How safe is Peckham?
Historically Peckham didn’t have the best reputation for safety, but this is largely outdated now. The regeneration of the area has contributed greatly to lowered crime rates and increased safety. Few tourists make it out as far as Peckham and so there’s little to no petty crime, but if you do feel uncomfortable you can use public or private transport easily to get around.
Peckham is a busy residential area, and so you’ll find streets normally have other people walking around them even late into the evenings and at weekends.
What type of people live in Peckham?
A true melting pot of ethnicities, cultures and backgrounds, Peckham has been named as the most diverse place in London. A healthy mix of families, young professionals, students and the older generation live in the neighbourhood, which is often nicknamed ‘Little Lagos’ for its large community of Nigerian expats. In a beautiful varied community, you’ll find the traditional London working class coexisting alongside communities from Bangladesh, Pakistan, Turkey, Vietnam, China, Ghana and the Caribbean. As a result, you’ll easily find lots of great and diverse restaurants and bars to try out!
Unlike the typical ethnic make-up of most places in the UK, you’ll find over 50% of the population here are minority ethnic, and about 30% white. It’s a great culture change to experience.
What transport links does Peckham offer?
Peckham is well connected to the rest of the city with strong transport links including the railway and bus. Peckham Rye rail station sits at a key rail interchange and is served by the South London Line, East London Line, Thameslink and Sutton & Mole services.
Transport for London buses run from two bus stations; Peckham High Street and Blackpool Road, with services all across London and down into Kent.
There isn’t a London Underground station in Peckham, which often puts off tourists from visiting, but it is sufficiently connected without one and still valid for travel with an Oyster card or travel pass for Zone 2.
What is there to do in Peckham?
Now’s definitely the time to visit Peckham as it continues to grow and develop from regeneration and investment. You don’t need to take the train anywhere – stay in the area and have a good explore!
Browse the books at an award-winning library
Peckham Library is the only library in the world to have won the Stirling Prize for Architecture. An elevated building within an inverted ‘L’ shape, the quiet reading space is on the first floor away from street noise, and a community centre full of events and activities sits beneath. It attracts up to 500,000 visitors a year (unheard of for a local library!) and hosts a great range of books, magazines, periodicals and computers; all free to use.
Catch a film on a rooftop
The Bussey Building is a post-industrial restored event venue that hosts gigs and exhibitions year-round. What’s more, its rooftop bar and café hosts cinema screenings every spring and summer so you can sit out on a warm evening in a deckchair with a cocktail and watch a classic. Summer bliss: in the UK!
Listen to the latest hits (and the classics) at Rye Wax
Situated in the basement of the above-mentioned Bussey Building, Rye Wax is a giant record store that’s a favourite amongst music fans and producers alike; but with a difference. While browsing you can eat Vietnamese food, grab a drink and even get your hair cut at the regular pop-up barbers and stylists. It’s full of friendly people willing to chat and jam and it makes for a really different afternoon experience.
Peckham is a multi-cultural haven and full of friendly vibes, bright colours and community spirit. HFS London love it – and so could you!
Homestay in Peckham
If you are an international student, intern or professional looking for homestay (“host family”) accommodation in Peckham or close by, we would love to hear from you. Similarly, if you have a spare room in your Peckham home and are interested in hosting international students, please do get in touch with us.