The greenhouses were originally a propagation site designed to grow plants and produce for the main house, now Brockwell Hall. In 1892 the London County Council (LCC) purchased the site and designated Brockwell Hall’s grounds a public park the greenhouses took on the role of serving the Walled Gardens and, in latter years, the park.

However, in 1998 the greenhouses were ‘released from service’ and took on a new charitable life designed as a local resource to improve the lives of the local community.

Timeline of Brockwell Park and BPCG

  • Until 1807 – The whole of Tulse Hill and Brockwell Park formed a single estate.
    • Between 1352 and 1537 the whole estate was owned by St Thomas’ Hospital
    • In the 1650s was in the hands of the Tulse family. (Sir Henry Tulse was Lord Mayor of London in 1684).
  • 1807 – The estate was split in two and one part was developed as Tulse Hill. The other side was bought by John Blades, a wealthy glass merchant. In 1811-13 he built a new house at the top of the hill – Brockwell Hall now the cafe.  Can you imagine living in that house looking out the park?
  • From 1815 – Some of the houses in Brixton Water Lane were built for estate staff, some of whom would have worked growing food for the estate in walled garden next door & on the site that is now BPCG. BPCG was used as a propagation site, grow plants and produce from seed.
  • 1860 – The grandson of John Blades inherited the estate & built more in the area including towards cost of St Judes church. He died in 1888. Eventually the whole estate was up for sale.
  • 1888 – He died in 1888 and eventually the whole estate was up for sale. MP Thomas Bristowe campaigned to make it a public park.
  • 1892 – Brockwell Park was opened as public park by London County Council & more parts of the estate were added to park. The estate kitchen garden changed to the Old English Walled Garden. BPCG was owned by the London County Council and was used by the council to support the walled garden.
  • 1981 – Two new bespoke Clearspan greenhouses built covering ~300m2
  • 1986 – Growing in the greenhouses is abandoned
  • 1988 – 1998 – The site was derelict and guerrilla gardening started to take place
  • 1998 – The site was released from service by the council and became a charity, used as a local resource for local community. At the time called ‘Green Adventure’
  • 2010 – Brockwell Park Community Greenhouses became a registered charity with the Charities Commission.
  • 2012 – Heritage Lottery funding for park includes greenhouses and a lease was obtained from Lambeth Council.
  • 2022 – The barn was built as new indoor education and events space.

Map of Brockwell Park and the BPCG site in the 1890’s

Map of Brockwell Park and the BPCG site in the 1980’s

Plan of the Greenhouses from the 1980’s – check out the names given to the Greenhouses!

Fermentation workshop in the Upper Greenhouse. The Greenhouse gets used for everything!

The Greenhouse getting its spring clean.

The addition of the barn in 2022.