At the end of the 19th century, Croydon Corporation bought the land which now forms Wandle Park (Croydon) with the proviso that, “The land shall be forever dedicated and used as an ornamental pleasure ground and place of recreation for the inhabitants of the Borough of Croydon and for no other purpose whatsoever.”

An artificial boating lake was built, fed by the Wandle, and over the years, a bandstand  bowling green with a pavilion and tennis courts were added. In winter, the lake froze over and was used for ice skating.

However, there was not enough water supply to sustain the lake and in 1967, a culvert was built, into which the river was diverted, hiding it from view. The lake was filled in and grassed over.

Since 2012, Wandle Park has been completely regenerated. The work included de-culverting the River Wandle, ornamental planting, a new bandstand, a water fountain, restoring historic walls and paths, improved changing facilities to serve the football pitches, and a new skate park and ball court. A new café has recently opened, serving ethically-sourced products.

The renaissance is all thanks to Croydon Borough Council’s Parks To Be Proud Of campaign, funded with support from the Heritage Lottery and Big Lottery Funds under the Parks for People Scheme, as well as the Help a London Park project organised by the Mayor of London.

Discover the park

Cornwall Road,
OS Grid Ref:
TQ 31595 65678
Find out how to get here

Facilities & access

  • Innovative play area
  • Skate park
  • Community garden
  • Rose garden
  • Trim trail
  • Bandstand