We live in one of London’s greenest boroughs, where more than 100 parks and gardens mean open space is never far away. Now summer is here our green spaces are bursting with wildlife and floral splendour, so whether you fancy a stroll in the park, a game of footy or a picnic with friends, it’s time to get out there.
Kick summer off with a splash
If the temperature rises, little ones love to cool off in the borough’s eight paddling pools. Our pools are popular so we’ve kept them open, in spite of pressure on funding. They include the flagship water play area in Wimbledon Park, which is open now. We’ll fill our other pools from the start of the school holidays till Sunday 31 August. All will be open daily from 10am-5pm.
Flex your muscles
Get in shape for free while enjoying a breath of fresh air at our council-funded outdoor gyms. The latest addition in Mostyn Gardens opened in April with a cross trainer, bike and shoulder press bench. It joins existing gyms including those at King George’s Playing Fields, Figge’s Marsh and Morden Park.
Summer is a good time to try out a new sport and Mitcham’s BMX track on Acacia Road is a great family day out. Supervised sessions cost just £2.50 for two hours and part of the track is reserved for balance bikes so younger children can have a go. Taster sessions and courses are also available.
Let the Brazil World Cup inspire you to get a team together to play football. A new multi-use games area opens in July next to Canons Leisure Centre, Mitcham in response to demand for more all-weather pitches. Book your session through the leisure centre.
If you’d like to try something a little different, beach volleyball is available in Wimbledon Park where there are two courts open daily. Try out this emerging sport on the very same sand that was used on Olympic courts during London 2012. Book online or join one of the sessions run by Wimbledon Volleyball Club.
Why not give bowls a try? There are seven bowling greens in the borough and several clubs. Sessions cost from £4 per hour and you can usually just turn up and play. It’s a great way to make new friends and spend time in our parks. All ages are very welcome.
There’s no avoiding the borough’s strong connection with one sport in particular – tennis. There are more than 50 public courts plus many courses and sessions taking place over the summer. Visit merton.gov.uk/tennis to find out about the courses on offer.
Visit Wimbledon Park during the August Bank Holiday Weekend (23–25 August) to feast on fine food and drink from local producers at the first ever Wimbledon Park Food Festival. Families and foodies are welcome.
All the fun of the fair
Mitcham’s annual Status Fair is part of the borough’s heritage – there’s been an August fair in the area since Elizabethan times. Head for Three Kings Piece from 7–17 August for all the thrills and spills of this traditional funfair – check local advertising for prices and deals.
Keeping parks green and clean
Thanks to the work our parks team and the local community do to keep our green spaces clean, several of our parks have won Green Flag awards, making them some of the best in the country.
As we welcome the hot weather, more people are out enjoying Merton’s parks and our new solar bins will be hard at work, using innovative technology to deal with any rubbish in a modern, efficient way.
These special bins use solar power to operate internal compactors which squash down the rubbish inside, massively increasing the capacity of each bin and sending a signal to the parks team to let them know when they are full. We also have dog mess and recycling bins installed in several of our parks. If you notice a build-up of litter on a sunny weekend, phone 020 8545 9750 to let our team know.
To find out how you can do your bit to keep our parks beautiful, visit the council website to see our Park Code.
Find out more
Parks including outdoor gyms and bowls:
School holiday courses:
Wimbledon Food Festival:
Multi-use games area: