Greenspaces: Peckham Rye Park

Peckham Rye Park is the bit of Peckham Rye Common hidden behind a row of trees to your left as you travel from Nunhead to East Dulwich. You probably already know this, but it had never occurred to us to ask what lay beyond.

For a narrow sliver of parkland, Peckham Rye Park squeezes a lot in to its 50 acres. As well as the wide open tracts of land, beloved of games-players and dog-walkers, it features a Japanese garden and an old English garden, called The Sexby Garden [above, top], which is hung with vines and covered with sprouting purple blossom. Five ponds and a lake are scattered about the ornamental parts of the park, while the river Peck runs through it.

The park underwent significant restoration work in 2004-05. Waters were cleared, paths resurfaced and the Sexby Gardens returned to their former glory while the bowls pavilion was rebuilt. Today, the park remains beautifully maintained while the bowling green [above, bottom] is open to the public, with complete novices welcome to play for only £3 per hour between 11am and 5pm at the weekends.


ade said...

Noticed that there was an outdoor gym as I headed through the park this morning - not sure it's free but there is are weights benches and other gym-y looking equipment in bright yellow at the nunhead head of the park (by the car park)

Nux said...

I think that the outdoor gym is free, yes.

Another charming part of the park is the pond, when I was there a few weeks back there were tiny moorhen chicks which were insanely cute, and baby coots too. Cootlings. Ahhh.

Anonymous Pete said...

I walked past there earlier on today - very pleasant.

I walked through on the way to East Dulwich where I was surprised to see a blue plaque commemorating the birth of Boris Karloff (William Henry Pratt) on Forest Hill Road.

Anonymous said...

Yes, the Outdoor Gym in Peckham Rye Park is completely free. There is also one in Dulwich Park and Sydenham's Home Park has just had one built. (I am told that Burgess Park has just had one installed as well, but have yet to see it in person.)

Please try one or more of them out and see what you think.

I hope you will all forgive the plug, but there is a campaign under way to build one in the ward of Telegraph Hill. Should you want to find out more, please email us at:

Danja said...

Great park - so surprising to find the southerly(?) nice bits courtesy of child after assuming it was all flat grass and football pitches from the Nunhead Lane side.

In my 3yr old's life map it has remained "new park" for about 75% of his life and he loves beetling around it every bit as much as "big park" (Greenwich) and "park up the road" (skateboard death fiend hell park).

Gabriella said...

it's a great place and the cafe is very good, esp if you have children.

Matt-Z said...

Intersting article following the course of the River Peck here:

Brockley Jon said...

A word of warning, if you're an allergy sufferer, last time I was in the Victorian garden, it looked great so I got a bit David Bellamy, smelling flowers and touching leaves and things, then had a massive allergic reaction, came out in huge hives and had to go home for a cold shower and antihistamine! Think it might have been a palm plant that did it, but I'd never had a reaction as extreme as that. Nice garden, though I'll probably give it a wide berth from now on!

Anonymous said...

This park is beautiful. The picnic area is so peaceful in the summer. There is so much variety and beauty in this space. Greenwich is, in my opinion, one of the most beautiful parks in London but Peckham rye, brockwell and manor gardens are also favourites

The outdoor gym at peckham rye is very good (and free) and i think they are building a gigantic childrens play area on the nunhead side

Green Fingers said...

I thought they would have given a warning if there was a plant that could give an allergic reaction,so it might be to a small minority.

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