History of Clapham shared

History of Clapham shared

Clapham shared in South West London is a 220 acre park. Part of Clapham shared is located in the London Borough of Wandsworth with the rest being a part of the London Borough of Lambeth.

Clapham shared was formed by the residents in 1836 when the locals decided to take over the care of the shared from the Lords of the Manor of Clapham and Battersea! The residents done this with the intention of cleaning up the overgrown area and keeping it a place of public interest! In 1871

In 1836 some local residents formed a committee to acquire leases from the Lords of the Manor of Clapham and Battersea in order to preserve and enhance the shared which was overgrown and unkempt. When the leases expired in 1871, locals decided that the park should become publicly owned. In 1877, Clapham shared was bought by the Metropolitan Board of Works. The shared, underwent a small transformation where they drained swamps, filled in the ditches and made the shared into a much greener ecosystem.

Clapham shared played a large part in both world wars where the shared was chiefly used as allotments for growing food and in World War I it was also used for training soldiers in the use of hand grenades. In World War II public air raid shelters were built on it and anti-aircraft guns sited on it. In 1948, the shared was re-opened to the public and was now in the hands of London City Council.

By 1975 there had been a large increase in facilities for the general public which included a huge range of sporting courts for sports such as tennis and netball and pitches for Gaelic football, rugby,, hockey and cricket! There are also additional facilities for golf, horse riding, fishing and form boating. The facilities for children had also grown and included playgrounds, sandpits, paddling pools along with a selection of refreshment areas such as cafes.

Clapham shared has four ponds in the park; Cock Pond, Long Pond, Eagle Pond and Mount Pond. The latter three are usually used for fishing with the Cock Pond which is a more modern addition is chiefly used as a paddling pool.

To represent the history of Clapham shared there are various historical features on the shared. One of which is the selection of fine houses surrounding the area, the remnants of World War II bunkers that were built on the Battersea Rise side and a large memorial tree planted in 2007 in memory of local-born actor Jeremy Brett.

At the centre of the shared is a band-stand, the most famous landmark in Clapham. After having been neglected for some years, it has since been restored to a much better condition. Unfortunately it is nevertheless rarely used when first thought that it might serve as a place where members of the community could gather and as of summer 2011, it is having however more work done to restore it further.

There are other historical buildings on the shared, one of which is the Holy Trinity Church. It was built in 1776 and was badly damaged during the Second World War. It was also the home of the Clapham sect who had a large voice in the abolition of the slave trade.

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