Forest Hill and Sydenham film wins local couple £1,000 in estate agent competition

Mon 10 Aug 2015

A light-hearted video tour of Forest Hill and Sydenham has landed a local couple the £1,000 top prize in a national film competition.

Christian Hayes and Katy Milner scooped the four-figure sum after entering property specialist Leaders’ ‘Love living in’ competition. Their film was an instant online hit, attracting thousands of views, likes and shares on social media, and was picked as the winner ahead of entries from across the country.

Entrants were challenged to sum up exactly why they love living where they do in a short film of no more than three minutes.

The winning video takes a look at some of Forest Hill and Sydenham’s most popular landmarks, green spaces and shops, with Christian performing a hilarious voiceover in the style of a public information film from the 1970s.

Christian explains: “We were inspired by our own silliness. During the editing stage, we discovered the spirit of a lost public information film and it helped the voiceover to come together. Contrary to filmmaking convention, the style and script came after filming.”

Luckily for the couple, they have a longstanding affinity with Forest Hill and Sydenham so showing why they love SE26 and SE23 was not difficult.

“The area is so friendly and relaxed. Over the last few years, there’s been a big regeneration of Forest Hill and Sydenham with the appearance of interesting stores, cafes and pop-up shops, which really add flavour to the area,” Katy says.

“There are monthly markets and the annual Sydenham Arts festival is getting bigger and better by the year. And did we mention the trees? It feels like there is always something going on here and we love it!”

David Montero, branch manager at Leaders in Forest Hill, adds: “Forest Hill and Sydenham are incredibly popular places to live, offering a great choice of properties in trendy surroundings with great access to London.

“We were thrilled to see Christian and Katy had decided to show off the very best of the area in such an original and humorous way. They fully deserve their prize.”

In addition to their own prize, Leaders has given the couple a further £1,000 to donate to the local community group of their choice. The budding filmmakers selected nearby Sydenham Pre-School as a worthy recipient of the funds.

Katy explains: “As a small community nursery, Sydenham Pre-school is in need of extra funding. We have seen the tremendous work of Jenny Davis and the other ladies there as our five-year-old daughter attended for two years and our three-year old son is there now, so we are delighted to be able to give something back.” Jenny Davis, manager of Sydenham Pre-school, says she cannot put into words how appreciative the institution is of being chosen for the community group prize.“The difference it will make to us is beyond our expectations. We were planning to purchase some new equipment for the home corner and new resources in the different learning areas in the pre-school, and this award is going to play a major part in achieving this,” she notes.

To view Christian and Katy’s winning film, visit

For advice you can trust on all aspects of selling, letting, buying or renting a property, contact Leaders in Forest Hill.