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Kendor Gardens

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by Bastion Harrison (subscribe)
Freelance writer and poet from London; if you would like to read my poetry, please check out my book, 'Poems on the Page', available from
Published January 10th 2014
Short but Sweet
kendor gardens, dorset road
Kendor Gardens, Dorset Road, Merton

With a name far grander than the Merton-based park can actually live up to, I once saw a review that named Kendor Gardens 'the winner for the most pointless and useless park in the city'. While there is a lack of - well almost everything, I still think this is a little harsh.

kendor gardens, dorset road

With no playground, toilets, or picnic area, at its simplest, Kendor can be described simply as a long path linking Dorset and Kenley Road. The reason for its existence is one of funding. Back when the Northern Line on the London Underground, the spot Kendo Gardens now occupies was going to be a station. But the money ran out. Instead, they stopped on station short and simply had the train line run through this area. Because trains travel directly underneath, it was not safe to build any housing here, and so they plonked a park in its place.

kendor gardens, dorset road

Kendor Gardens may not have any facilities, but in all honesty, it does not need them; there is no point, as the park is too small. Does that make the park useless? No. Kendor is a lovely quiet spot to walk along as an alternative to the main road. You can hear the birds twittering in the trees rather than the roaring of cars.

kendor gardens, tree
Winding branches give trees character.

For such a small park, Kendor actually has quite a variety of trees, from deciduous to evergreen and straight to windy. There are also shrubs and circular flowerbeds, that give the park a nice symmetry.

kendor gardens, tree
Lots of different types of trees.

It is a good place to walk the dog, go jogging (you can do circuits because the path goes round like a double eight), sit down on one of the numerous benches, and look out for wildlife.

kendor gardens, burrow
Who lived here?

Mostly I saw birds hiding in the bushes, but I also spotted a small animal burrow.

kendor gardens

Kendor Gardens is well maintained by the John Innes Society; it never looks overgrown, I saw no signs of litter or graffiti, and a voluntary group called the Friends of Kendor Gardens are looking into improving the park by developing it to the next level.
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Why? Quiet walk
When: 8am-dusk
Where: Dorset/Kenley Road, Merton
Cost: Free
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