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Wimbledon: a village within a City

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FACTFILE


  • Train – Wimbledon & Wimbledon Park (District Line)

  • Landmark – All England Lawn Tennis And Croquet Club (Site of Wimbledon Tennis Championships

  • Random Fact – The 2012 singles winners of the Wimbledon Championships (Roger Federer & Serena Williams) earned £1,150,000 each.  


By Hugo Fulco

The home of tennis is not just the home of tennis. The All-England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club does attract large crowds for the world’s most traditional Grand Slam tournament every summer, but there is so much more to one of London’s most picturesque districts.

The mostly residential area is divided into what locals call ‘the village’ and ‘the town’. The village holds the majority of the homes and the town has the commerce and entertainment, making it the perfect suburban lifestyle.

In the town, developed around the creation of the railway station, there are many attractions.

The New Wimbledon Theatre is one of these. Redeveloped several times, most recently at the end of the last millennium, the theatre has been the stage for various big-name musicals and is also famous for being the set of many recent television series, such as The IT Crowd, Little Britain and Extras.

There are also a nice selection of pubs to choose from in the town and the All-England Club Museum is just a short walk away from the station.

This affluent part of Greater London, which belongs to the borough of Merton, remains most famous for its tennis however. Held since 1877, Wimbledon is the oldest and most famous tennis tournament in the world.

Also contributing to the community’s sports scene is the story of the local football club, now renamed AFC Wimbledon. When the owners of the original club moved the team north to Milton Keynes in 2002 in a then-unprecedented move in British sports, the club’s fans refused to support the old team.

In a bid to keep the club local and in a strong demonstration of tight-knit communitarian sentiment, they instead created a movement and founded a new team the very same year. After just 10 years, the club has climbed from a semi-pro status and now find themselves in the fourth tier of English football.

Events Manager Will Tubbs, 24, has lived in the area since he was 3, and says he feels privileged to have grown up in a ‘village within a city’.

“Wimbledon offers something different from the hustle and bustle that comes with living in other parts of the city. From its beautiful architecture and vast array of independent shops, ‘village’ life has offered me an idyllic

setting to grow up in and at times made me feel like I was in the countryside rather than in Zone 3 of London.”

“At night, it offers residents and visitors a large variety of traditional pubs with real unique character and a community feel. Personally, it stands out more than any other suburban district in London and I feel lucky and blessed to have lived in such a beautiful place.”

Check out the Wimbledon community site and blog.