Stories about Wandsworth

Francis Grose
Mulberry Cottage, on Wandsworth Common, was the home of Francis Grose - a writer from the eighteenth century who was particularly passionate about words. His best-known work, .A Classical Dictionary...
Friendless Boys
In 1852, on Spanish Road, the Friendless Boys' Home was established - a home for 200 boys aged 10 to 16 who "have lost their character or are in danger of losing it"./ The boys learnt carpentry...
Shopping and Racing
Head to the Southside Shopping Centre (previously the Arndale Centre) at 8:15 on a Tuesday evening, and you'll find some shoppers buying in their dinner; some cinema-goers wandering up the...
Sunday Afternoons
The scene: a Sunday afternoon between the wars. For some it was a day of rest, perhaps sitting in the deckchairs, listening to the brass bands in the afternoon in King George's Park...
Sweets
Near where the Southside Shopping Centre is now, there used to be much smaller shops. In the 1920s, Gwen Copeland would earn money by doing the shopping for her neighbours, and then spend it in the...
The First Railway
Wandsworth is the home of the world's very first railway - or at least, the very first thing that had the word "railway" in its name: the Surrey Iron Railway. The Surrey Iron Railway was one of two...
The Pardon
In 1392, Richard II wanted to borrow £1000 from the citizens of London. They turned him down. In fact, they didn't just turn him down: when a man from Lombardy offered to lend the money to the king...
The Telescope
In 1852, Wandsworth Common was home to "a singular-looking structure, consisting of a plain tower with a long tube slung by its side, surrounded by a wooden-hoarding to keep off intruders"...
The Wandsworth Walloper
Wandsworth Prison was built in 1851, and in 1878 it began to serve as London's hanging prison, where condemned prisoners were held and executed. It was also frequently the site of corporal punishment...
Lascars in Wandsworth
In the early nineteenth century, thousands of Lascars settled in Britain. The word Lascars was a European term for the many non-European seamen who were recruited to work on merchant ships as they...