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22 March 2011

An Oscar for SE23?

Well maybe not quite. Lionel Logue, speech therapist to King George VI, lived for some years in our area on Sydenham Hill.

The film ‘The King’s Speech’ depicts the relationship between the two with Geoffrey Rush and Colin Firth playing the roles respectively.

Logue had come to England with his family in 1924, supposedly on a holiday. Instead he took jobs teaching around London and then enjoyed a successful career as a speech therapist.

In the 1930s he lived at Beechgrove, a Victorian villa on Sydenham Hill, which had 25 rooms, five bathrooms, five acres of garden and a tennis court. The house is now gone but interestingly you can still see the folly, rockery and remains of an ornamental stream. The area, part of Sydenham Hill Woods, is open to the public.

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