Southgate has connections with many people in the arts and showbusiness. The Turner Prize-winning artist Rachel Whiteread was a student at Southgate School. The singer Rachel Stevens from S Club 7 and award-winning jazz singer Amy Winehouse both were born in Southgate and went to Ashmole School on Cecil Road. U.S. wine guru Phillip Silverstone lived in Chase Side and went to Ashmole School. Radio presenter Simon Mayo was also born in Southgate. The singer Alberto Remedios lived in Southgate before emigrating. The actor Ron Moody lives in Southgate at the Cherry Tree. Husband and wife singing coaches David and Carrie Grant live in Southgate.
The MP for Southgate, David Burrowes, lives here in his constituency, where he was born. His predecessor, Stephen Twigg, was born and raised in nearby Oakwood. Norman Tebbit, former MP for Chingford and close ally of Margaret Thatcher, was also born in Southgate. David Jordan also lived in the Southgate rea.
Becoming separate from Edmonton in 1881, Southgate had a population in 1891 of just 10,970. By 1901 the figure had moved up to 14,993, and by 1911 the figure had ballooned to 33,612, aided by the nearby railway station in Palmers Green.
Southgate was predominantly developed in the 1930s: largish semi-detached houses were built on the hilly former estates (Walker, Osidge, Monkfrith, etc.) following increased transport development. In 1933, the North Circular Road was completed through Edmonton and Southgate, and also in 1933, the London Underground Piccadilly Line was extended from Arnos Grove (where it had reached the previous year), through Southgate tube station, on to Enfield West (now known as Oakwood). This unleashed a building boom, and by 1939 the area had become almost fully developed.
By 1951, the population had grown to 73,377 - falling by about 1,000 ten years later as many moved to new towns nearby.
In 1894 Southgate was created an urban district of Middlesex by the Local Government Act 1894. In 1933 the district gained further status as a municipal borough. The Municipal Borough of Southgate was abolished in 1965 by the London Government Act 1963 and its area was combined with that of the Municipal Borough of Enfield and the Municipal Borough of Edmonton to form the present-day London Borough of Enfield.
Because of the age of the former village, Southgate has many pubs: within the village centre there were no fewer than six licensed premises.
Chase Side contained (and still contains) a number of pubs. The Wagon and Horses in Chase Side was rebuilt in 1900 and again in 1930. The Rising Sun in Chase Side was the terminus for a local horsebus service to Colney Hatch (and there to Kings Cross) before the arrival of the railways, whereupon the service switched to the new station in Palmers Green. It was rebuilt in 1932, and substantially renovated in 2008, changing its name to The Sun.
Opposite the Southgate Club on Chase Side stood The Gate, which was closed in August 1909. The landlord, A. Butcher, took the sign with him to the Fishmonger's Arms in Winchmore Hill Road - which apparently read "This gate hangs well, and hinders none. Refresh and pay - then travel on." While the sign no longer exists, his pub does - rebuilt in the 1930s, the pub owes its name to the nearby ice wells which produced ice for central London fish markets.
In the middle of the 18th century, The Crown (also once known as The Crown Hotel) on Chase Side was a centre of 'much sport'. A caption in a framed picture of a dog discovered by author Herbert W. Newby reads:
Mr. Earl of the 'Crown Inn', Southgate, Nr London, will produce a retriever puppy not over six months old for £10 or £20 that will perform more tricks than any other dog of nine months old in England. He is a beautiful dog, and very large for his age.The building was originally a wooden two-storey building with a brick gable-end facing the highway. It was rebuilt in 1895 but has since been demolished. The Wetherspoons pub The New Crown occupies a site nearly opposite.
Other notable pubs include Ye Olde Cherry Tree which overlooks Southgate Green to the south of Southgate's main centre, and The Woodman which is on The Bourne.
Formed in 1961 by a group of enthusiasts in New Barnet under the conductorship of Terry Hawes, Southgate College Symphony Orchestra continued as an evening class within Southgate College until July 2005, having become semi-autonomous in 1997. In the summer of 2005, the Orchestra became independent of Southgate College and renamed itself Southgate Symphony Orchestra. An amateur orchestra, it takes players of Grade 6 standard and above, playing concerts around Enfield. Previous performances have included music by Beethoven, Dvořák, and Weber.
Southgate is home to many cricket teams and grounds, but the best and most well known is that of Southgate CC, who play at the Walker Ground on Waterfall Road. Their ground, named after the famous Walker brothers who set it up and played cricket for Middlesex, is overlooked by a church and many trees.
Southgate RFC are based at Saracens RFC Ground, Bramley Road.
Old Ashmolean RFC are based at Bournside Sports Club, within the grounds of Grovelands Priory. After several years of promotion Old Ashmolean RFC, now in London North West 4, is the highest ranked Rugby Club based in Southgate.
There are five synagogues with Southgate in their name,: Cockfosters and North Southgate, Palmers Green and Southgate Synagogue. These two are part of the United Synagogue, also included, but independent, is the Southgate Adeni Synagogue, serving Yemenite Jews of Adeni extraction and other Mizrahi Jews. Chabad Southgate also is included.
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