Alexandra Park, London
Alexandra Park is an 80–hectare, Green Flag Award, and Green Heritage winning, diverse-landscape park, in the Borough of Haringey in north London adjacent to Hornsey, Muswell Hill and Wood Green. Laid out on the site of Tottenham Wood and the later Tottenham Wood Farm, the park and palace were named in 1863, the year of the marriage of Alexandra of Denmark to the Prince of Wales who became King Edward VII.
Alexandra Park is split between hilly and flat ground. The tree-lined hill has wide views from slopes and many areas of the relatively large hilltop. Of note is the view from Alexandra Palace which dominates the park, particularly its Panorama Room. On most days the Crystal Palace Transmitter and/or the North Downs in Surrey are visible. From 1936 to 1981, the BBC transmitted TV programmes from a tall mast built onto one of the towers of the palace. In 1980, most of the palace was gutted by a huge fire. The building has since been restored and is now a conference and exhibition centre.
An Act of Parliament in 1900 changed the status of the park from private ownership to a public trust. The first company was set uo in the 1850s to build an education, recreation and events venue to rival south London's Crystal Palace which took the main structure of the Great Exhibition, 1851 from Hyde Park, London. The Act therefore created the Alexandra Palace and Park Trust as to which the Trustees were bound to maintain the Palace and Park and make them available for the free use and recreation of the public forever.
Until September 1970, the park hosted horse racing, including many evening meetings that were televised by the BBC. The Alexandra Park Racecourse on the plain below the palace was nicknamed "the Frying Pan" owing to its shape, featuring an ornate Victorian grandstand and cast-iron railings. For eight decades the whole venue had up to three stations, one of which was a tram station, to enable more visitors — for more details see Alexandra Palace railway station (1873–1954). Its most prestigious race was the London Cup. Alexandra Park Cricket Club and Football Club occupy most of the former site, sporting facilities for the local community.
A medium-sized lake attracts a variety of waterfowl in all seasons, and used to have a large enclosure housing a small herd of fallow deer. The deer were moved to Devon in early 2016. The Park was declared a Local Nature Reserve in 2013, and is also a Site of Borough Importance for Nature Conservation, Grade 1.
At the foot of Muswell Hill, the park is host to a farmers market most weeks.
Three means of access exist:
- the frequent W3 bus (connections at Wood Green and Finsbury Park tube stations)
- a relatively brisk 8-10 minutes walk uphill from Alexandra Palace railway station
- Car/motorbike/cycle parking, with motor parking limited by reservation for events
Alexandra Park neighbourhood
The area directly north of the park is usually known locally as Alexandra Park, although technically it is just a locality of Wood Green, and part of the N22 postcode which derives from Wood Green. Like many London neighbourhoods, its precise boundaries are vague. It can be approximately bounded by the North Circular Road to the north, the Great Northern Railway line to the east, the park to the south and the medieval to 19th century hedge and ditch between the south of Rosebery Road and St Regis Close/Muswell Avenue followed by a clearer road with footpath, Alexandra Road.
The large neighbourhood's identity has been reinforced by its local website and Alexandra Park Library. It has a secondary school, Alexandra Park School and a primary school, Rhodes Avenue Primary School, which stands on the site of Tottenham Wood House which had a large farming estate and gardens. Since the demolition of the house and the naming of the neighbourhood's roads omitting Wood, Green or Tottenham, the remaining connections are a shared station in the east and shared postcode.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 5 March 2012. Retrieved 29 July 2011.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- - About (accessed 31 January 2008)
- "Alexandra Park Conservation & Heritage Management Plan" (PDF). Alexandra Park and Palace Charitable Trust. January 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 13 June 2018. Retrieved 13 June 2018.
- Mills, A.D. (2010). A Dictionary of London Place-Names. Oxford University Press. p. 6. ISBN 9780199566785.
- grid reference
- http://www.alexandraparkcricketclub.com/ Cricket
- http://www.alexandraparkfc.co.uk/ Football
- http://www.alexandrapalace.com/park/animal-enclosure/ deer
- "Alexandra Park". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. 20 March 2014. Retrieved 9 April 2014.
- "Alexandra Park". Greenspace Information for Greater London. 2013. Archived from the original on 13 April 2014. Retrieved 9 April 2014.
- "iGiGL data portal (map)". Greenspace Information for Greater London. Archived from the original on 14 January 2014. Retrieved 9 April 2014.
- http://www.parkrun.org.uk/allypally/ Parkrun
- "Walks". Archived from the original on 23 June 2019. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- https://sites.google.com/a/dreamcountry.org/foapk/home/coming-soon Events coming up in the Park
- https://weareccfm.com/city-country-farmers-markets/market-profiles/alexandra-palace-market/ farmers market
- http://alexandraparkneighbours.org.uk/ Alexandra Park neighbourhood
- Friends of Alexandra Park - website promoting and protecting Alexandra Park in North London
- Alexandra Palace official website