was to become the norm on Surrey’s roads and hills. These days, you can book Pearson Cycles to build your dream machine, get your current bike fixed or just stock up on the latest trendy threads so you look the part on club rides. All the gear and all the ideas. On the hunt for the perfect Christmas present? Not a problem. At the heart of modern Sutton, you’ll find retail developments, St Nicholas and Times Square. You’ll find most of the High Street brands you’d expect to find in a town this size here – so it’s spot on for a onestop Christmas shop. Look out for independents like Warrenders Jewellers, Barnes & Fadden home furnishings and Sutton Music Centre too. Prefer to escape the rush to the tills? Well there’s always the state-of-the-art 10screen Empire cinema, which can also be found at St Nicholas. This artists’ community is based in old stables once part of the estate of the Earl of Derby (of the world-famous horse race in Epsom). Now occupied by a group of visual artists, whose practice includes painting, sculpture, stained glass, printmaking and puppetry, they hold open weekends every summer and take part in the Carshalton Artists Open Studios. The Sutton Countryside Walk and Oaks Park Nature Trail are also found in the park, while section 6 of the London Loop walking trail passes through.
Web: stnicssutton.co.uk and timessquareshopping.co.uk The Old Stables, Croydon Lane SM7 3BA. Web: oaksfineart. co.uk NEXT MONTH: Woking