I grew up in Welling. Definitely used to have an air of racial tension (certain pubs were BNP pubs, the riot etc). As a pastime me and some mates used to go out at night to spray over BNP graffiti. And it was just generally very drab and horrid. May have improved now though, and thankfully the council finally kicked out the BNP.
Definitely south welling, rather than north. Bexleyheath is just down the road. Nice roads there too. North Bexleyheath (meaning north of the tracks) is OK too - The Pantiles, Brampton Road, round there and over to Pickford Lane etc.
In ye olden times, the BNP had their HQ in Upper Wickham Lane. That's the bit of Welling that's mentioned, if you're concerned.
Welling is duller than a dull thing, though. It does have 2 supermarkets (Morrisons and Tesco), some North African/Mediterranean supermarkets.
The part of Welling which is just near Westwood Lane, Welling Way, over that direction is OK too. (Actually, just looked back through thread and someone else has mentioned them).
I've lived in the area for 45 years, so know it quite well.....
Sorry to post in this thread but we are aso looking to buy in Welling. What we have found generally is that property market is more upbeat in south welling than north. We are looking at a property in Welling, just off Lynmere road. really like the property, but not sure of the area just because we don't live there.. We have heard some horror stories related to BNP party HQ etc..
welling is dull, but i disagree about it being racist. Its about half am hour to central London on the train. Bexleyheath shopping centre is nearby, bluewater about 15mins away by car. Its a quiet area really, although the high st has a few pubs that get busy on a weekend. Danson park is just off the high st and fab for kids. Easy to get to Greenwich park, and blackheath. Schools are good at primary level. We are on shooters hill which is Greenwich/welling border by oxleas woods, great for walks and sledgeing. Woodlands farm is lovely all year. Welling has bexley grammar at secondary level if you can get through the 11+. I really like it!
What ethnicity are you? That makes a big difference in Welling... HQ of the BNP used to be in Welling, it's also close to welling where Stephen Lawrence was murdered. But there are far FAR worse areas in that part of Kent. Avoid Erith and Slade green like the plague! Also Woolwich and Plumstead. Bexely and Bexleyheath have nice bits. Welling in (or was 5 years ago) a middle ground.
Personally we moved up north as soon as we had dd to avoid raising her in north Kent.