Area guide and History of Merton Park
Merton Park is one of the earliest if not the original London Garden Suburb, with its first houses built in the 1870’s.
Merton Park is set within South West London nestling between Wimbledon and Morden. It was developed by a remarkable character, John Innes, whose name lives on not only in the conservation area named after him but in the wider world through the famous John Innes Compost.
Innes and his architect H.G Quartermain laid out pleasant avenues of chestnut and plane trees and divided plots with fine holly hedges – holly being the Innes clan emblem. They built attractive houses of varied design and size, many of which are in highly desirable roads today such as Mostyn, Dorset and Sheridan Roads.
Although both Innes and Quartermain died in 1904 another talented architect J.S Brocklesby continued building into the 1920s in the arts and crafts style. Much of John Innes development was designated a conservation area in 1968. The area south of Church Lane was developed in the 1930s and once again benifitted from large gardens and terraced and semi-detached houses. Roads such as Poplar Rd, Kenley Road and Cranleigh Road are good examples of this period. Originally Circle Gardens, SW19 was planned to be a church with many roads leading to it. The church was never built and houses were built on both the inner and out circles.
Part of Merton Park’s appeal lay in its accessibility to the railways which from mid – Victorian times linked Merton Park and Wimbledon to the City and Waterloo. The present more extensive rail services such as Wimbledon District Line Underground and British Rail Station, Morden Northern Line Underground Station, the new Tramlink, South Merton British Rail Station are the travellers link to London and beyond.
One of Merton’s most famous residents worshipped in the St.Mary the Virgin 12th Century Church in Church Path and that was Lord Nelson with his lover Emma Hamilton.
Merton Park is now a highly sought after residential area and an excellent investment for buyers and landlords.