Ruskin Park

park in Denmark Hill, south London

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Ruskin Park
Bandstand, Ruskin Park, Lambeth, London-24March2012.jpg
Ruskin Park is located in Greater London
Ruskin Park
Ruskin Park is located in the United Kingdom
Ruskin Park
TypePublic park
LocationDenmark Hill, Lambeth, London SE5, England.
Area36 acres (15 ha)
Created2 February 1907; 114 years ago (1907-02-02)
StatusOpen all year

Ruskin Park is park in the London Borough of Lambeth, London, England, close to Camberwell, Loughborough Junction and Herne Hill.


At the start of the 20th century local residents successfully campaigned for a new public park on 24 acres of land on Denmark Hill, and it opened to the public on 2 February 1907. The park was laid out by the notable parks designer Lt-Col JJ Sexby. Sexby's design included an Old English Garden, an oval duck pond, a bandstand and a bowling green. The bowling green has been replaced by a garden, but the other features remain.[1] In 1910 Ruskin Park was enlarged by the addition of a further 12 acres (5 ha) to the south west.

The existing houses on the site were demolished when the park was created. One of these was Dane House, where, in 1842, Felix Mendelssohn composed Spring Song.[2] There is a sundial in the park commemorating Mendelssohn's visit.[3] The former entrance porch to one of the demolished houses remains in the park, and is Grade II listed.[4]

The park is named after John Ruskin (1819–1900), a poet, writer and a major champion of diverse green spaces as well as of the Arts and Crafts movement, who lived nearby from 1823 to 1871. He gives his name equally to a university, college, museum and square.[5]

During World War I, recruits of the 21st Battalion, London Regiment (First Surrey Rifles) based at nearby Flodden Road in Camberwell, trained in the park.[6]

Facilities and features

It has a playground, nature area, tennis court, basketball court, football and cricket pitches, and pond.[7]

There is a Friends of Ruskin Park group.[8] There is a mural of a common toad on a wall in the park by street artist ATM, which was commissioned by the charity Froglife.[9]

Ruskin Park is open from 7.00am to 15 minutes before sunset every day.


  1. ^ "London Gardens Trust:Ruskin Park". Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  2. ^ "London Gardens Trust:Ruskin Park". Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  3. ^ "Friends of Ruskin Park: Key Features". Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  4. ^ "Historic England list entry no 1064982". Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  5. ^ "Ruskin Park". Lambeth Council. Archived from the original on 2012-10-12. Retrieved 2012-10-24.
  6. ^ Anon, A War Record of the 21st London Regiment (First Surrey Rifles), 1914–1919, 1927/Uckfield: Naval & Military, 2003, ISBN 1-843426-19-6.
  7. ^ "Friends of Ruskin Park: Sports and Fitness". Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  8. ^ "Friends of Ruskin Park". Retrieved 18 December 2020.
  9. ^ "Friends of Ruskin Park: Froglife's Toad Mural and Nature Trail". Retrieved 18 December 2020.

Named after John Ruskin who lived with his wife Effie in Denmark Hill

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