Charlottenburg Park in New Cross

The Mulally website tells us that ‘…Sir Steve Bullock, Mayor of Lewisham officially opened the new Charlottenburg Park on Saturday 3rd September. This new park was constructed by Mulalley on the former Deptford Green school site in Amersham Vale and was named, following a public poll, in honour of Lewisham’s twinning arrangement with Charlottenburg in Berlin, which seems a rather curious ‘twin’…

Margaret McMillan Park in Deptford

London Gardens Online tells me: ‘…The park is named after Margaret McMillan who with her sister Rachel McMillan were pioneers of nursery education. Margaret McMillan Park opened in 1954 and was originally laid out between Watson’s Street and Glenville Grove with a series of lawns along Douglas Way. In the late 1980s part of the park was eroded by housing development and in 1998 improvements were carried out to the park, including a bridge by sculptor John Maine. In 2009 the park was redesigned and re-landscaped as part of Route 1 of the North Lewisham Links project, the works completed in 2010…’.

Fordham Park in New Cross

The Borough of Lewisham owns and manages Fordham Park in New Cross. Back in 1619 James 1 owned the land. Today Clifton Rise leads from the main New Cross road into one side of the Park. This was Wolve Acre Lane’ in 1619 when the area was farmland.

Sue Godfrey Nature Reserve

The Lewisham Council website tells us that ‘…The park was originally named Bronze Street Nature Park. It was renamed [Sue Godfrey Nature Reserve] in 1994 in memory of Sue Godfrey…’, a local resident and environmental campaigner. She was instrumental in rescuing the park and played a vital role in life on the adjacent Crossfield Estate.

‘…Two years later, the ashes of Roy Ramsey, another environmental campaigner, were gently interred here. Both were much loved and it is to be hoped that, by keeping their memory alive, the nature park’s survival for future generations of wildlife and people will be ensured…’.

Sue Godfrey Nature Reserve
Memorial Plaque in the Nature Reserve

St Paul’s Churchyard Gardens in Deptford

Deptford is a very historic part of London – close to the River Thames and on a Celtic trackway which later became a Roman Road – Watling Street. It is named after a ford over the Ravensbourne River. I came here to visit St Paul’s Churchyard Gardens.

The Surrey Canal Linear Park

While visiting the Pepys Parks I had noticed a green space behind the row of shops on Grove Street and decided to investigate. A path leads alongside and behind the Community Centre to an open grassy area – and beyond that comes the big surprise – the Surrey Canal Linear Park! The Surrey Canal Linear Park, created by Lewisham Council and opened in mid-2016, is a surprising and delightful new park in Deptford on the line of the former Grand Surrey Canal. 

Pepys Parks continued

There are several more green spaces which make up Pepys Parks, in addition to the Lower and Upper Parks previously visited. A gap between the buildings on Grove Street, almost opposite the row of shops, leads to the first green space, and then another gap between buildings leads across Bowditch to Longshore and on to the Foreshore.

Sayes Court Park in Deptford

Deptford Park and Folkestone Gardens have a strong connection with John Evelyn and so it seemed sensible to visit Sayes Court Park in Deptford next. This was the site and name of his home and garden (perhaps ‘estate’ would be a better word) in Deptford, which is part of Lewisham district.

Deptford Memorial Gardens

Deptford Memorial Gardens in Lewisham are described on London Gardens Online in 2011 as consisting of ‘…three strips of formal gardens laid out on raised ground between the main road on the south side and a row of mid-C19th paired houses. At the northern end is the WWI war memorial, a Portland stone obelisk with figures of a soldier and sailor, which was unveiled in 1921.

Today the gardens form a strip of lawn within which is a series of circular, rectangular or oval flower beds with seasonal displays. A path runs through the gardens and there are a number of seats. Yew hedges and shrubbery border the garden to the south and there are a number of ornamental trees, as well as lime and horse chestnuts. The border to Lewisham Way has a scalloped retaining wall…’. (NB: the location of the gardens on a Google map at LGO is incorrect.)