The Friends of Wanstead Parklands

Category: History


The Owners of Wanstead Park Part 11: 1825-1882

THE FIFTH EARL OF MORNINGTON AND HIS HEIRS This is the eleventh and last in a series of articles giving brief biographical sketches of the people who owned the Wanstead estate over 800 years. Links are given to sources of…

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Tudors – Twenty-eight Days to Wanstead

England’s Forgotten Coup d’Etat Alan Cornish M.Sc. The Tudor dynasty in England ran from 1485 to 1603 – a span of 118 years. Yet the most exciting part lasted probably only about 28 days, finishing in Wanstead! History sometimes appears…

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The Second World War in the Park

Introduction by Alan Cornish M.Sc. Long after the events of the Second World War, many of the actual details seem almost unimaginable. Fortunately we have been left a record: “The Story of Civil Defence in Wanstead & Woodford 1939 –…

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“The Great Gardens of Wanstead Park”

Wanstead Park is a nationally important historic landscape. It preserves many features from the late 17th to the early 19th centuries, when the park was one of the most spectacular and ambitiously designed gardens in the country. It was worked…

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A description of Wanstead House and its park in 1819

For more than a century, Wanstead House, Colen Campbell’s Palladian masterpiece, was one of the sights of Essex. It featured in every gazetteer covering the area, and writers were united in praising the grandeur of its architecture, its commanding position,…

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Video: Picnic on Wanstead Flats

Wanstead Flats is adjacent to Wanstead Park, and both are part of Epping Forest. The coming of the Olympic Games to east London brought into sharp relief, once more, that these wonderful open spaces can be threatened. This film highlights…

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Video: Wanstead’s Grotto

Our grotto – our shadow of a grotto – dates back to about 1760. I call it a “shadow” because whilst its historical significance is massive, it has never been restored since being gutted by fire in the 1880’s. Its…

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Wanstead and the East India Company

Without the East India Company there would be no Wanstead Park. The park, and its  great Palladian mansion, were built using the great fortune amassed by Sir Josiah Child as Governor of the “Honorable Company” in the later seventeenth century.

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The Grotto in Wanstead Park & its National Context

By Michael G. Cousins The earliest surviving ornamental grotto in this country is that at Woburn Abbey, which dates from the late 1620s. In form, these grottoes largely followed the style of those to be found in European gardens, particularly…

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Wanstead Park – a Chronicle

Rarely can the detailed history of one place be chronicled over so many centuries as that of Wanstead Park. This outline of a fascinating story was originally the work of Alan Cornish M.Sc., former Chairman of the Friends of Wanstead…

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