Inventory Site Record

Surrey Square Park

Surrey Square Park (Southwark)

Brief Description

Surrey Square was part of a scheme by architect by Michael Searles, built in 1793/4 for the Rolls Estate for which he was surveyor. Son of a Greenwich surveyor, Searles designed a number of ambitious schemes, largely uncompleted. Part of his terrace remains, overlooking the public park built as part of the large Aylesbury Estate by Southwark Council between 1967-77. Surrey Square Park is on slightly undulating ground. In the west is the Peter Martin Memorial Garden, a small area of landscaping with path and shrub beds.

Practical Information
Site location:
Surrey Square/Alvey Street/Surrey Grove
Type of site:
Public Park
Open to public?
Opening times:
Special conditions:
playground, wildlife area
Public transport:
Rail/Tube (Northern): Elephant and Castle then bus. Bus: 21, 53, 63, 172.

The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/04/2012
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news.;

Full Site Description

Michael Searles lived in New Kent Road in a house he built c.1800. Part of his grand terrace of 18 houses at Surrey Square remains; Samuel Palmer, the landscape painter/etcher and friend of William Blake, was born here in 1805. The terrace is fronted by a raised stepped stone pavement and overlooks Surrey Square Park. Adjacent to the park to the east is the former church of All Saints, since the 1960s the Church of the Lord, built in 1959 by Cachemaille Day to replace the earlier church of 1864-5 that was damaged in WWII. The pathway between church and park has a number of decorative panels fixed to the wall.

The Friends of Surrey Square Park was set up to look after the park and has undertaken a number of projects to improve its environment. By 2011, new works included a wildflower meadow, a raised planter in the Peter Martin Memorial Garden, natural play features, and improvements to the hedges and fencing along the Alvey Street boundaries. Funding was raised from the 2010/2011 Cleaner Greener Safer scheme run by Southwark Council.

Sources consulted:

Bridget Cherry & Nikolaus Pevsner, The Buildings of England: London 2: South (Penguin) 1999; Southwark Listed Buildings data

Further Information (Planning and Conservation)
Grid ref:
Size in hectares:
Site ownership:
LB Southwark
Site management:
Parks; Friends of Surrey Square Park
Listed structures:
LBII: 26-54 Surrey Square; stone pavement fronting terrace
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:
Tree Preservation Order:
Not known
Nature Conservation Area:
Green Belt:
Metropolitan Open Land:
Special Policy Area:
Other LA designation:

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