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Furnival Gardens Hammersmith & Fulham

Summary

The site was once the mouth of Hammersmith Creek, which had a thriving fishing industry until the early C19th. By 1830 the area had high quality residential property but later became a dense mixture of factories, housing and other uses. In the 1920s Hammersmith Council began to improve the area and the Creek was infilled in 1936. In 1948 it was decided to create a public open space on bomb-damaged land between the river and Great West Road, to be completed for the Festival of Britain. Laid out in 1951, the new riverside park was named after Dr Frederick James Furnivall, scholar and founder in 1896 of what is now the Furnivall Sculling Club. A secluded garden surrounded by a low wall was created on the former site of Hammersmith Friends Meeting House C18th burial ground, which was destroyed by a flying bomb. The north boundary was provided as part of road works in 1956 and the park was extended on the east in 1957.

Basic Details

Previous / Other name:
Furnivall Gardens

Site location:
Mall Road,/Rutland Grove, Hammersmith

Postcode:
W6 ( Google Map)

Type of site:
Public Park

Date(s):
1951; 1957

Designer(s):
Local authority

Listed structures:
None

Borough:
Hammersmith & Fulham

Site ownership:
LB Hammersmith & Fulham

Site management:
Environment Department, Parks Service (ground maintenance by Quadron Services)

Open to public?
Yes

Opening times:
unrestricted

Special conditions:

Facilities:

Events:

Public transport:
Tube: Hammersmith (Piccadilly, District, Hammersmith & City). Bus: 33, 72, 209, 283, 419

The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/06/2010
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news. www.lbhf.gov.uk

Further Information

Grid ref:
TQ227783

Size in hectares:
1.78

Green Flag:
No

On EH National Register :
No

EH grade:
None

Site on EH Heritage at Risk list:
No

Registered common or village green on Commons Registration Act 1965:
No

Protected under London Squares Preservation Act 1931:
No

Local Authority Data

The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.

On Local List:
No

In Conservation Area:
Yes

Conservation Area name:
The Mall

Tree Preservation Order:
No

Nature Conservation Area:
Yes - Local

Green Belt:
No

Metropolitan Open Land:
No

Special Policy Area:
Yes - Area of Archaeological Importance

Other LA designation:
Small Local Park; Open Space of Borough-wide Importance. Within The Mall Area of Special Advertisement Control

Furnival Gardens

Click photo to enlarge.

Fuller information

Furnival Gardens is on a site that was once the mouth of Hammersmith Creek, which had a thriving fishing industry until the early C19th, and was navigable almost to King Street. This area had high quality housing in 1830, but by 1850 infilling had started and it became a dense mixture of factories, housing and other uses. In the 1920s Hammersmith Council began development of the area as part of its Hammersmith Southern Improvement Scheme and the Creek was infilled in 1936. Existing and new housing suffered damage in WWII and in 1948 the decision was taken to create a public open space on bomb-damaged land between the river and Great West Road, to be completed for the Festival of Britain. The public park was laid out in 1951 and was named after Dr Frederick James Furnivall (1825-1910), scholar and founder in 1896 of what is now the Furnivall Sculling Club, originally called Hammersmith Sculling Club for Girls and Men.

There is a tall C19th lime tree, and a plane tree possibly dating from the C18th on the lawns, but otherwise the planting dates from the 1950s and includes cherries, Norway maple, mountain ash, hornbeams, as well as shrubberies. A secluded garden surrounded by a low wall was created on the former site of Hammersmith Friends Meeting House burial ground dating from the C18th, which was destroyed by a flying bomb. A pier was constructed by the PLA in the south-west corner and Furnivall Gardens and Hammersmith Pier were opened on 5 May 1951. The north boundary was provided as part of the Great West Road works in 1956 and the park was extended on the east in 1957. In the east corner of the park, attached to an early C19th house is a lamp from Berlin presented in 1963 by Willy Brandt, German Chancellor, with a good horse chestnut beside the house.

Sources consulted:

LB Hammersmith & Fulham Archives Dept, 'A note on the open spaces of Fulham and Hammersmith', 1974 p9; John Archer, Daniel Keech 'Nature Conservation in Hammersmith & Fulham', Ecology Handbook 25, London Ecology Unit, 1993

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