UNVEILING a new wall mural at The Cricketers Public House, Mitcham, on Tuesday, Mr. John Young, chairman of Young’s Brewery, said that the pub and the Cricket Green opposite had been connected with the sport for well over 200 years.
The first Australian team to tour this country had used the original pub as a pavilion and changing rooms.
When the new building was opened in 1958, following a fire at the previous pub, they put numerous photographs of cricketers around the bars.
“ We thought it would be a good idea to have a mural based on a cricket match in the bar, and this we have done,” Mr. Young added.
The mural is the work of Mr. Conrad Nickolds, who first had to take a picture of a cricket match, played on Whit Monday, with a wide angle lens.
Mr. Nickolds, who describes himself as a craftsman and not an artist, then coloured the print and mounted it on a frame to recreate the cricketing scene.
Later in the evening, following the unveiling of the mural by Mr. Young, the licensee and his wife, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Cromack, opened their new “ Doubles ” bar and restaurant upstairs.
Customers were able to take part in wine tasting, and during the everting there was a competition with a prize of 12 bottles of Spanish table wines.
Among the regulars were Mr. and Mrs. Leonard Young — not related to the brewery firm—who have been visiting The Cricketers for 40 years.
“ I can even remember coming to The Cricket Green in 1908 with my father, and while he went into The Cricketers for a pint, I would be sent to a little shop across the road for a bag of sweets,” Mr. Young said.
As repoorted in the Sporting Life, the Mitcham Cricket Club president’s wife performed the opening ceremony.
MITCHAM v. HON. ARTILLERY CO.
A NEW PAVILION OPENED.
Since the earliest days of Surrey cricket, Mitcham Green, the scene of yesterday’s match, has been a noted locale. Additional interest was attached to the present fixture, as it was set apart for the opening of the new and commodious pavilion. The ceremony was performed by Mrs. G. J. Poston, wife of the president, in an appropriate speech.
The match, which provided some keen play, resulted in a victory for the home side, eight minutes before the time, by 53 runs. For the winners, W. Hussey was top scorer with 68, which included eleven 4’s: while for the Volunteers W. Stopper had 58, consisting of ten 4’s, and J.D. Gillespie 42 not out. The last-named, who hit six 4’s, made 16 in one over from Hussey. Major Triffey has sufficiently recovered from the injuries sustained in the recent South African campaign to renew association with the summer game. It will remembered this gallant soldier was invalided home after being severely wounded.
Source: Sporting Life – Thursday 19 May 1904 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)
The current police station was opened on Saturday 18th June 1966. The previous building it replaced opened in 1855.
It was announced in 1964, that the building was to be demolished, eighty years after it was built.
POLICE STATION IS COMING DOWN
Work on Mitcham’s new police station has started. For this week a demolition squad moved in to knock down the old station, which dates from 1884.
The squad were expected in October but they didn’t arrive and it looked as though local police would have to put up with their present building for some time to come.
A temporary police station was erected but no signs of the old one coming down were to be seen.
The present station, which overlooks the Cricket Green, will be replaced by a modern building, probably with several storeys.
Work is expected to take 18 months.
Source: Mitcham News & Mercury, 5th June, 1964, page 1.
Mayor opens new police station
Mitcham’s new £98,000 police station was officially opened on Saturday by the Mayor of Merton, Sir Cyril Black. And over 3,000 members of the public toured the station and visited a special exhibition in the car park throughout the day.
“The open day was very successful, far better than we anticipated,” commented Inspector S.W. Brunger, who organised the day with Supt. H.W. Gibson.
He added: “Open days are usually held for particular occasions like an opening. But because the public showed a great deal of interest it is quite possible they will be held more often.”
The opening ceremony was held on the top floor in the canteen. Members from all walks of life were present and Mr Robert Carr, M.P., arrived later.
Sir Cyril Black said he hoped the police would have no work to do in their new station, but if they did it would have a satisfactory completion.
He emphasised the need for the public to see what goes on in a police station and to understand the policeman’s work.
He said: “The police are anxious that their work is fully understood by the public. We must realise the task in which the police are engaged.”
He added: “The public have got to be educated in their duty to co-operate with the police. The task of policemen would be easier if full co-operation from the public was always forthcoming.”
Commander G.C.F. Duncan said the ambition of the police was to show the people of Mitcham what they are paying for and what goes on in the station. He said they wanted to knock down the idea that the police were working behind closed doors. The police had nothing to hide from the public.
“This is the newest police building in South London,” he said, “and it took many years to achieve it, but it has got to last a long time and we hope the public will think the money was well spent.”
Plans for the new station were first under way in 1962 and building started in 1964. It stands on the site of the old station which was built in 1884.
Before the public started to arrive the guests were taken on a tour of the station. They saw the various offices, detention rooms and the cells.
Then in the car park at the rear they saw an exhibition that included a mobile police unit, police dogs and horses, police sports car and a car that was involved in a fatal accident.
The most important exhibition was a special van and equipment used when accidents have occurred and to warn other motorists of the accident and dangers ahead.
Then from lunchtime to well into the evening the public were shown round.
One little girl was so pleased with her visit that she presented the sergeant on duty at the front reception desk with a flower.
Source: Mitcham News & Mercury, 24th June 1966, page 1.
A row of four pairs of houses from the corner with Glebe Path running west, in parallel with, but set back from, Lower Green West. Built after 1897 on the site of a pond, which is shown in this 1866 map:
According to Eric Montague in his book Mitcham Histories: 5 Lower Green West, page 11, the pond measured 200 feet by 50 feet and had been called King’s Pond. The sub-soil here is sand and gravel and Montague suggested that this was originally a pit dug for the gravel, which would be used in building. With the water table high the pit would have filled in with water forming the pond.
The year of 1897 comes from the Land Registry title for number 6, which was auctioned in early 2016:
A Conveyance of the land in this title and other land dated 2 September 1897 made between (1) The Reverend Frederick Wilson Clerk (the Incumbent) (2) The Governors of The Bounty of Queen Anne for the Augmentation of The Maintenance of The Poor Clergy (the Governors) (3) The Right Reverend Father In God Edward Stuart (the Ordinary) (4) Francis Charles Simpson (the Patron) (5) The Right Honourable and Most Reverend Frederick By Divine Providence Lord Archbishop of Canterbury (the Archbishop) and (6) Richard Arthur Bush (the Purchaser) contains covenants details of which are set out in the schedule of restrictive covenants hereto.
The restrictive covenant contained in the conveyance of 2nd September 1897 stated that …
the purchaser would within 12 months of the date of abstracting presents erect not less than 4 detached houses or two pairs of semi detached houses on the premises.
That no buildings other than dwelling houses with their offices should be erected on the premises the prime cost of which for work and materials should not be less than £400 or in case of pairs of semi-detached dwellinghouses should not be less prime cost than £650 per pair.
This 1910 OS map shows the four pairs of houses:
From the 1915 street directory:
Lower green west, from London Road
… here is Glebe Path
1, Charles STUART
3, George Henry NELSON
4, Robert CHART
5, Arthur LANGRISH
7, Charles Clarke APLIN
8, John David CLARKE
From the 1925 street directory:
Lower green west, from London Road to Church Road
1, Charles STUART
2, Miss Bessie May MARTIN
3, George NELSON
4, John William ALLEN
5, Arthur LANGRISH
6, Charles R SINCLAIR
7, Mrs HOLLIS
8, Herbert E HART
9, George W.T. ORMOND
Note that number 9 is possibly the White Cottage.
Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.
A house on Cricket Green, when it was previously called Lower Green East. Demolished.
It was possibly next to White House, Cricket Green. It may have been owned by Walter Charles Rhoades. In the 1915 electoral register he is listed as living at 183 Bedford Hill, Balham, and owning “Two cottages east side of Lower green”.
The 1953 OS map shows ‘White House’ and the entrance to The Birches is just north of it.
The 1910 OS Map shows a building next to White House which may have been Rhodes Cottage.
This clip from a 1910 photo on Merton Memories shows a building to the left of White House, which may have been Rhodes Cottage.
Electoral registers show this as Rhoades or Rheades Cottage.
From the minutes of the Croydon Rural District Council
Mitcham Parochial Committee
24th April, 1906
Nuisances: “Rhodes Cottage” and “White House” Lower Green.
Inspector Rabbetts reported the existence of nuisances at these premises, arising from the defective condition of the drains. Resolved, That the Inspector of Nuisances be authorised to serve notice on the owner, Mr. A. R. Harwood, of London Road, Mitcham, requiring the abatement of said nuisances.
Minutes of meetings held by the Croydon Rural District Council are available on request from the Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre at Morden Library.
Maps are reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland.
Office block built after the London Borough of Merton sold Mitcham Court and surrounding land to Alfred McAlpine Homes in 1985.
Redeveloped as a block of flats after it was sold for £3,085,000 plus £617,000 VAT to Java Asset Management (Co. No. 06181412) of Chesham House, 55 South Street, Epsom KT18 7PX on 16th March 2015, financed by Titlestone Property Lending Limited (Co. No. 08144104) of 40 Gracechurch Street, London EC3V 0BT.
Planning application 16/P0080 was refused for extension to roof to provide 6 residential units (2 x 1 bed and 4 x 2 bed) and alterations to external elevations
Of the 23 flats already sold, 15 were to buyers in Hong Kong, 1 in Shanghai China, 1 in France, 1 in Italy, 1 in Japan and 4 in the UK.
DEATH OF PTE. CHART.
—Mr. R. M. Chart. C.A., is so well-known for many years’ work as surveyor to the old Rural District Council and as County Alderman, that the sympathy will be wide for the loss he has sustained in the death at the front of his son, Pte. Geoffrey Chart, who joined up on the outbreak of the Boer War, and after the campaign was over started in business in Cape Town. When this war commenced he again joined the Highlanders, and last spring came back for a few days to his old home. He was wounded in action on Sept. 21st, and hopeful news was sent as to his recovery, but he died Sept. 23rd. He was 36, and leaves a wife and two children. Alderman Chart has three other sons serving.
Source: Surrey Mirror – Friday 12 October 1917 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)
ALD. CHART’S BEREAVEMENT.
Pte. Geoffrey Chart, South African Contingent, whose death on Sept. 23rd from wounds received on the 21st is reported, was the fourth son of Mr. Robert M. Chart, St. Mary’s, Mitcham, Alderman of the Surrey County Council, and chairman of the Small Holdings and Allotments Committee.
Source: Surrey Advertiser – Saturday 06 October 1917 from the British Newspaper Archive (subscription required)
From the Commonwealth War Graves Commission:
Service No: 10196
Date of Death: 23/09/1917
Regiment/Service: South African Infantry, 4th Regiment
Grave Reference: I. E. 6.
Cemetery: Nine Elms British Cemetery, Poperinge, Belgium.
Additional Information: Son of Robert and Florence Chart, of St. Mary’s, Mitcham, Surrey, England; husband of Margaret Chart, of Limebrook Cottage, Bingham Street, Bangor, Co. Down, Ireland.
The Nine Elms British Cemetery contains 1,556 Commonwealth burials from the First World War.
According to Eric Mobtague, in his Mitcham Histories : 1 The Cricket Green, page 105, St. Mary’s was the home of Robert Masters Chart from 1911 until his death in 1942. The house was near the old Methodist church, on the eastern side of the Cricket Green, and was demolished in the 1950s.
This image, part of a 1903 postcard, shows the old Methodist church and some houses next to it, which may include St Mary’s, where the road Chart Close is today.