This oral history project was delivered by Groundwork London throughout 2014 and involved the collection of memories from local people about the river through time.

11 volunteers were trained to be oral historians and gained skills in audio capture, interview techniques and digital recording as they went in search of stories, recollections and accounts from Wandle Valley communities. “Memory boxes” were installed along the river to inspire everyone to recount their history of living near the Wandle and add their memories to the mix.

These memories have been transcribed into a special edition book which is available for purchase online or to be viewed as a PDF. You can also listen to the captured oral histories or read the transcripts from the book via the Wandle Library digital archive.

A photo canvas, screen prints and other artworks were produced by pupils at the Harris Academy in Merton and St Faith’s Primary School in Wandsworth and were showcased at the Living Wandle Festival in September 2014. The beautiful resources can all be viewed at the Wandle Industrial Museum.

The project involved collaboration from the following organisations: Commonside Community Development Trust, St Faiths Primary School (Wandsworth), Harris Academy (Merton), Sam Brooks Brewery, Princes Trust, Wandle Industrial Museum, Wandsworth Mind, Age UK, Merton Bus Garage and many more.

If you would like your own memories added to our online Wandle Library digital archive please complete a memory postcard and email it to us at or post to The Old Bookshop, Morden Hall Road, Morden, London, SM4 5JD.


This project was part of the wider Living Wandle Landscape Partnership Scheme, supported by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund.

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