Living in London

South East London

Covering the boroughs of Bexley, Bromley, Greenwich, Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark, the sub-region of South East London has a population of 1.67 million. There are six major healthcare providers and 232 GP Practices across this area. 

South East London has a diverse and mobile population with some of London’s most significant cultural landmarks. The focus on wholesale generation for the last decade has stimulated the local economy and enhanced London’s cultural, entertainment and leisure offering.


A UNESCO World Heritage Site sitting on the River Thames. Home to the O2 Arena, the Cutty Sark, National Maritime Museum and Greenwich Park, one of London’s largest and incredible green spaces. There is plenty of things to see and do with local entertainment across the area with two cinemas, lovely waterside pubs, a comedy club and Greenwich theatre.


A neighbour to Greenwich and 22 kilometres south-east from the centre of London, this quiet borough sits on the border with Kent and, with more than 100 parks, is one of the greenest boroughs in the capital. Enjoy live entertainment at the Edward Alderton Theatre and Geoffrey Whitworth Theatre or relax at Lesley Abbey Woods, Danson Park and Hall Place Gardens, some of Bexley’s prettiest green spaces.


Just 11 kilometres from Central London, Lewisham is one the best-connected areas of South East London with trains and numerous bus routes. Blackheath is the most affluent area in the borough.  Enjoy a village feel with Traditional Pubs and boutiques or relax in the beautiful expansive local park. There is plenty of live entertainment and nightlife to enjoy. The Catford Broadway, one of London’s oldest theatres, hosts an eclectic mix of drama, music and comedy. Other places to visit are The Laban Theatre in Deptford, the New Cross Inn and The Venue in New Cross.


One of the most vibrant boroughs in London, with a culturally diverse population and an excellent assortment of theatres, galleries and the historic Lambeth Palace.  Waterloo, Brixton, Clapham and Oval are all nearby, experience visiting cultural landmarks such as the Southbank Centre, Hayward Gallery, the London Aquarium, London Eye, historic Lambeth Palace or enjoy live music at the Brixton 02.


Home to the Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre and Tate Modern Art Gallery, Southwark is an iconic borough with a rich cultural history. There are many appealing neighbourhoods within Southwark to cater for different tastes. There are the up and coming areas of Bermondsey, Camberwell, Peckham, Elephant and Castle and the leafier, affluent areas such as Herne Hill and Dulwich.


A leafy outer London borough with excellent schools and good-sized houses, only 15 minutes from Central London. The Kent Down lies within Bromley, making it the only London borough to include an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The area is serviced well with The Glades Shopping Centre, an abundance of bars and restaurants plus a weekly farmer’s market.


South East London is less densely built up than north London. Property prices are some of the more affordable in the capital and it is fast becoming one the most popular places to live and work.

Whether you want a penthouse flat on the river, a traditional Victorian terrace or a large Edwardian Villa, South East London cater for all price ranges and tastes.


Full-time education is available for 5-18 year olds and part-time nursery places for 3-4 year olds. There are also independent schools including the famous Dulwich College. More than 15 colleges, universities and professional education institutions are based in South East London, including London South Bank University, Goldsmiths, University of Greenwich the Camberwell College of Arts.


London has an integrated transport system which means that a daily, weekly or monthly pass will allow you to use the underground system, trains, commuter boats and buses.

London Buses

London’s bus network covers the city, including South East London, with a 24-hour service.


London City Airport is within easy reach of South East London, via the Docklands Light Railway and Jubilee Line. Major international airports London Gatwick and London Heathrow are also within easy reach. 


East London

Covering the boroughs of City of London, Hackney, Havering, Newham, Redbridge, Barking and Dagenham, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest, East London is a multi-cultural area with a population of around 2 million. There are five NHS Hospital Trusts and 303 GP practices. 



There are seven town centres in Havering, offering quality shopping, restaurants and events during the year. Havering has two museums, Havering Museum and Upminster Tithe Barn houses. Havering Museum celebrates the achievements of local people past and present while Upminster Tithe Barn houses a collection of 14,500 domestic and agricultural artefacts.


Eight kilometres east of the city of London, the borough of Newham is home to Westfield and Stratford Shopping Centres as well as the Theatre Royal Stratford East which features contemporary and classical productions. The former 2012 Olympic athlete’ village is now East Village, a thriving community with homes to rent, new shops and cafes.


Epping forest is one of Redbridge’s main assets. The forest has kilometres of nature trails, a lake for water sports, a country park and nature conservations areas.  Other main attractions are Goodmayes Park with its lake, basketball and tennis courts, Fairlop Water with two lakes and a golf course and Hainault Forest Country Park.

Tower Hamlets

Tower Hamlets is known as the heart of the East End and has a rich and colourful history, with Tower Bridge dominating the borough’s panoramic riverside. It is home to Canary Wharf Tower marking out the internationally renowned Docklands. The borough boasts some of the most famous, vibrant street markets in London, including Brick Lane, Petticoat Lane, Whitechapel, Columbia Road and Roman Road Square.

Waltham Forest

Waltham Forest is one of the most ethnically diverse populations in London. You’ll find bustling busy inner-city living in the south while the north half has a quieter side with stately homes, extensive parks and gardens.


A lot of investment has gone into local schools, colleges and universities in East London in recent years. Standards are now well above the national average.

More than 20 colleges, universities and professional education institutions are based in East London including Queen Mary University, University of East London, London Metropolitan University, City University, Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the London College of Business and Computing.

The area has state-run schools with free education for 5-18 years (including part-time nursery places for 3 & 4 year-olds). It also has independent (fee paying) schools for 5-18 year olds.



London’s bus network covers the city, including East London, with a 24-hour service.


London Stansted and London City airports are located on the east and north east side of London. London Gatwick and London Heathrow are also within easy reach.


In London, public transport is often a faster way to get to your destination. The Congestion Charge applies to most vehicles which drive into central London during the week.


There are overground and underground trains throughout East London.


There’s a great choice of places to live here, from brand new apartments in the City, Canary Wharf and Stratford to more traditional family homes further east.


East London offers some ‘key-worker’ accommodation to people working in health and social care and this may be available for GPs coming to work in the area. This provides quality, affordable, private rented accommodation.

Want to find out more about living in London? Read our latest blogs from doctors who have made the move. 

Working for the NHS - Insights from an international doctor

Working in the UK - How I made the Move

* Information taken from NHS England's East London and South East London IGPR (International GP Recruitment) Prospectuses. Follow the links to read the full guide for each location.

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