9 Reasons Why Osidge Is The Most Interesting Place In London

By M@ Last edited 85 months ago

Last Updated 16 May 2017

9 Reasons Why Osidge Is The Most Interesting Place In London

Osidge was once a small village south-east of Barnet, but was long ago swallowed up by urban sprawl. Most now regard it as part of Southgate (it's the nearest tube), but here are 9 reasons why we should all be celebrating this little-known district.

1. The name is Anglo-Saxon in origin. It means 'the hedge of a person named Osa'. How many other parts of London are named after someone's hedge? Answer: zero.

A hedge in Osidge, yesterday

2. Timothy Spall lives on Whitehouse Way — or at least he did in the Mike Leigh film Secrets and Lies.

3. One of the main industries in the area during Tudor times was to provide the firewood for burning heretics at the stake.

4. Amy Winehouse grew up on Osidge Lane.

5. Thomas Lipton moved here in 1893. This is the Lipton guy behind the famous tea brand. His house is now a care home for elderly women.

Sir Thomas Lipton and an 1898 garden party in Osidge. Tea was, no doubt, served. Image (c) Illustrated London News Group.

6. Osidge is the only word we can think of that properly rhymes with sausage. Funnily enough, Lipton's was once famous for its sausages, before the company decided to knuckle down to selling tea. We reckon at least a quarter of the people at the Osidge garden party shown above were making sausage jokes at any given moment.

Image © Local World Limited. Image created courtesy of The British Library Board.

7. Osidge is a hotbed of fake celebrities. A bogus Kate Middleton paid a visit in 2013 and was greeted with bunting, pink lemonade and cupcakes. More recently, an Elvis impersonator entertained a long-term Osidger on her 100th birthday.

8. You can paddle in one of London's great unlost rivers. The Pymmes Brook rises on the high ground near Barnet, eventually finding its way down to the River Lea behind Tottenham Hale Retail Park. The run through Osidge is one of the more pleasant stretches.

Pymmes Brook in Oak Hill Park. Image by the author.

9. The main pub is the Osidge Arms. Anyone who attempts an anagram is orgasmed.

Osidge: it's brilliant.