Discover the hearts and enjoy a staycation in Merton this summer

Giant white hearts have popped up in Merton’s parks as part of a campaign encouraging residents to enjoy the borough’s attractions and help its businesses and enterprises recover.

Merton Council has painted hearts in some of its beautiful parks for the Discover Merton campaign, which showcases green spaces and activities residents can enjoy on their doorsteps. It is just one of the council’s initiatives to encourage everyone to come together and help the borough recover from the effects of the lockdown.

Councillor Caroline Cooper-Marbiah, the Cabinet Member for Commerce, Leisure and Culture “We’re inviting everyone to enjoy a staycation in Merton this summer to help the borough’s leisure activities, shops, restuarants, pubs and cafes recover following the lockdown. We want to remind residents that we have amazing green spaces, heritage and fantastic attractions across the whole borough for them to explore. The council and businesses have been working hard to introduce safety measures to protect residents from the coronavirus and so we are encouraging everyone to support the local community and economy.”

“Our parks became a haven for residents during lockdown and so the hearts are our way of expressing this love. It’s also to remind people to show love to fellow park users by adhering to the social distancing guidelines and help control the spread of COVID-19.”

Merton has more than a hundred amazing parks and open spaces ranging from, nature reserves and ornamental gardens to the large commons, high profile parks and recreation grounds. The parks offer the chance for residents to discover nature, wonder at floral displays, take part in a range of activities from bowls to kayaking, or enjoy a picnic and heart-to-heart with loved ones.

The council is running a Hunt the Heart quiz, via social media, which gives clues highlighting the unique attractions of the five green spaces where the giant hearts are located.

Here is just a few of our Discover Merton top tips of great activities from across the borough to enjoy over the summer. Visit our website for more ways to make the most of Merton this summer. Download a free activity sheet for children here. Don’t forget to share your pictures on social media using hashtag #DiscoverMerton to inspire other families to join in the fun.

  • Explore Merton Abbey Mills and discover the working waterwheel in the wheelhouse pottery café.
  • Try paddle sports at Wimbledon Watersports Centre.
  • Say hello to the animals at Deen City Farm.
  • Cross one of London’s first rainbow crossings to celebrate the LGBTQ community.
  • Walk in the footsteps of Lord Nelson by following Nelson Trail.
  • Discover Merton’s wartime heritage and women’s suffrage.
  • Get to know the trees in the 140-year-old woods on Canon Hill Common.
  • Cycle round Mitcham Common to admire the ponds and diverse habitats.