Inventory Site Record

Petersham Meadows

Petersham Meadows (Richmond)

Brief Description

Petersham Meadows lie alongside the river and form a continuation of Buccleuch Gardens. They are an important part of the riverscape between Richmond and Teddington, and the view of Petersham Meadows has been famous for centuries, praised by Turner and Joshua Reynolds among many others. Cattle have grazed here in the summer for between 300 and 400 years but when the dairy company gave up ownership of the herd in the 1990s, the herd's presence was threatened, and the meadows themselves needed protection from development. In 2001 local residents came together to form the Petersham Trust under the chairmanship of long-distance runner Chris Brasher, founder of the London Marathon, and took on a 125-year lease from Richmond Council for an annual 'rent' of one bunch of wild flowers to be presented on 26 June, St Peter's Day. The meadows are now leased to the National Trust.

Practical Information
Site location:
Petersham Road, Richmond
TW10 7AG
Type of site:
Public Open Land
Open to public?
Opening times:
Special conditions:
Public transport:
Rail/London Overground/Tube (District): Richmond then bus. Bus: 65

The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/08/2011
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news.

Full Site Description

On the signing of the lease on 30 October 2001 Mr Brasher presented the first bunch of flowers to Eleanor Stanier, Mayor of Richmond. The Trust launched an appeal to raise £500,000 and planned to seek £150,000 lottery funding to restore the cowshed and other buildings on the meadows, improve access and provide long-term funding for the herd, at that time 27 Friesian crosses and Charolais, and a herdsman. Now leased to the National Trust, there is anxiety about the proposal to erect an electric fence, as a result of an incident in 2011 between a dog and a cow.

Across the towpath adjacent to the meadows is a small area of woodland, Petersham Lodge Woods, managed by LB Richmond for nature conservation.

Sources consulted:

John Archer, David Curson, 'Nature Conservation in Richmond upon Thames, Ecology Handbook 21', (London Ecology Unit) 1993; The Independent, 31/10/2001.

Further Information (Planning and Conservation)
Grid ref:
TQ180737 (518032,173646)
Size in hectares:
Site ownership:
LB Richmond, leased to the National Trust
Site management:
National Trust
Listed structures:
On National Heritage List for England (NHLE), Parks & Gardens:

Registered common or village green on Commons Registration Act 1965:

Protected under London Squares Preservation Act 1931:


Local Authority Data

The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.

On Local List:
In Conservation Area:
Conservation Area name:
Richmond Hill
Tree Preservation Order:
Nature Conservation Area:
Yes - Borough Importance II
Green Belt:
Metropolitan Open Land:
Special Policy Area:
Yes - Thames Policy Area
Other LA designation:

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