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Morden Town CentreHistory of Morden

Until the Tube station was built and the Northern Line extended in 1926, Morden remained a sleepy backwater of cottages and farms. The development of the station transformed the rural landscape, which overnight became within easy commuting distance of central London just seven miles away.

People flocked to the area and the St Helier estate, which was created to cater for the fast growing community. Building work on the estate – the largest local authority development in south London – started in 1928. The estate was named after the London County Councillor, Susan Mary Elizabeth Stewart-Mackenzie, The Baroness St Helier. The Haig Homes Foundation also took a liking to Morden, creating 270 properties in the area between 1928 and 1930.

Morden Hall Park survived this suburbanisation. Dating back to the 1770s, a number of historic buildings remain, including Morden Hall itself and the watermills where tobacco was once ground into snuff, until as late as 1922. The Hall was owned and occupied by the wealthy Garth family for generations until it was sold to a tobacco merchant Gilliat Hatfeild in the 1870s. His son, Gilliat Edward Hatfeild left the core of the estate – including the house – to the National Trust when he died in 1941.

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This page was last updated on Thursday 3 June 2010

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