Streatham Common has exited for over a thousand years and is the last vestige of the ancient manor of South Streatham.
For centuries it has provided a valuable resource to the local community the poor who owned no land and could not afford to rent pasture had the right to graze cattle sheep and other livestock on the Commons and gather furze and wood for fuel.
It was here the Streatham militia practised musket drill during the Napoleonic Wars and where around 125 years later residents dug for victory on the allotments during the Second World War.
Today the Common continues to be much appreciated open space providing a green oasis in our built up environment and is a valuable resource for residents of our crowded south London area.
To protect the Common from development the Metropolitan Board of Works purchased the manorial rights of South Streatham from the lord of the manor, The Church Commissioners, in 1888 for £5 to ensure that the manor's ancient common would remain open space for the local community to enjoy for all time and this ancient right is now protected by Act of Parliament.
The Streatham Society has published a special Heritage Trail highlighting places of interest on and around the Common. Copies are available for £3 including postage from:The Streatham Society, 220 Woodmansterne Road, Streatham, SW16 5UA.