Clapham Common Southside

Category: Webcam

Clapham Common is a triangular area of grassland of about 200 acres (0.8 km²) in size, situated between Clapham, Battersea and Balham in south London, England. Although most of it lies in the London Borough of Wandsworth it is wholly managed and maintained by the London Borough of Lambeth.

Webcam image provided by BBC London.

The common is surrounded by many fine houses which began to be built in the 1790s and became fashionable dwellings in (what was then) this village south of London, many being home to wealthy business people. Some of these were members of the Clapham Sect of evangelical reformers, including Lord Teignmouth and John Thornton, the banker and abolitionist. As London expanded in the 19th century this became part of a built-up area, and Clapham was eventually absorbed into the capital.

Also on the common in the Clapham bandstand which is the oldest bandstand in Europe which is currently being restored after years of fundraising and a national heritage lottery grant.

Part of Clapham Common has a reputation as a gay meeting place, and was featured in a heterosexual capacity in the Squeeze song Up the Junction, and was also connected with the famous Ron Davies “moment of madness” incident in 1998. It has also been the venue for a number of annual Gay Pride festivals. The bushy regions of the common are used by homosexual men for “cottaging” activities.

The common has also been the site of one of the Colourscape Music Festival structures since 1995. In 2005 it hosted several big events, including the Sprite Urban Games, Ben and Jerry’s Sundae on the Common and the Metro festival, most of which will return this summer.

Clapham Common tube station and Clapham South tube station are on the edge of the park.


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