Wandsworth common is a public common in Wandsworth, south London. It is close to Clapham Common and Wandsworth Common railway station. It is wholly in the London borough of Wandsworth. It is 69.43 hectares (172 acres)1 and is maintained and regulated by Wandsworth Council. Wandsworth Common railway station is located at the junction of Bellevue Road, St. James's Drive and Nightingale Lane and broadly divides the common up into two strips on the West and East side. A footbridge crosses the railway approximately halfway along the length of the open part of the common.
There is a large area to the east of the train line, which is mainly used for competitive sports (mostly football, touch rugby and rounders). There are a number of ponds and a lake, which can be used for fishing (with a permit). The lake is partially fenced off for the benefit of bird life, while other areas feature wooden pedestrian board walks, or open water's edge access. A small brick bridge crosses over the lake's waters at one point, connecting two pedestrian pathways.
Facilities include an educational centre in an area dedicated to wildlife known locally as 'The Scope' (named after the Craig telescope, which was once the largest refracting telescope in the world). There are also tennis courts, a bowling green and a cafe bar in the grounds, named 'Common Ground'. A fitness trail has been developed and the Common is popular with local runners, dog walkers and cyclists.
Houses on the Wandsworth (SW18) side are in what is known as the 'Toast Rack' and are large Victorian semis and detached homes, some with blue plaques denoting notable residents who previously lived there. One prominent former resident commemorated in this fashion is the British prime minister David Lloyd George.
Many retail outlets along Bellevue Road are of a premium but independent 'boutique' format (these include clothing shops, an art dealer and a gentlemen's gift shop), surrounded by up-market Victorian/Edwardian housing. There are a number of cafés as well as several estate agencies and chain outlets, such as Caffe Nero and a convenience store. The Bellevue Pharmacy has operated for many years. Notable restaurants include the Michelin 'Starred' Chez Bruce. There is a large public house, 'The Hope' near to Wandsworth Common railway station, which attracts many customers from the common.
Wandsworth Council states that barbecues are prohibited on the common.
Wandsworth Common Tennis & Bowls Centre allows Tennis & Bowls on a 'Pay and Play' basis including Tennis Coaching opportunities for all. The tennis centre is run by All Star Coaching Ltd for Wandsworth Council. It is situated behind the Common Ground cafe bar and is LTA affiliated, allowing those who sign up to gain free British Tennis Membership. Membership also allows use of Battersea Park, King George's Park, Tooting Common and Barn Elms Sports Centre.