We are all aware of what Wimbledon is internationally known for (tennis, of course), but Wimbledon is also home to the very talented students of Wimbledon College of Arts, who bring creativity and energy to the surrounding idyllic green and leafy south west London residential area.
Somewhat surprisingly, Wimbledon is only four stops away from Waterloo station by train, so you can go from Zone 3 to the hustle and bustle of Central London in just 15 minutes. But before you go zipping off to the South Bank, why not take a bit of time to check out the Wimbledon local area first? Wimbledon has lots to offer including historical sights, parks, its own little village as well as the town centre full of shops, cafes, cinemas, restaurants and not one but two theatres.
We’ve compiled a list of our top 8 things to see and do in the Wimbledon area.
1. New Wimbledon Theatre
Wimbledon is fortunate enough to have its own Grade II listed Edwardian Broadway theatre showing lots of west-end touring plays, musicals and performances. Examples of previous productions include An Inspector Calls and The Bodyguard.
A local favourite, Coolangatta is a friendly café serving up delicious brunch, smoothies, cakes and coffee. When you are in the mood to treat yourself to an amazing fry-up, or need a coffee before a big day of course work, this is the place to go. Students also get a 10% discount – just show your student card at the till.
3. The Leather Bottle
Whether you fancy some pub grub or a cheeky celebratory drink with your peers after the deadline of an intense project, look no further than the spacious yet cosy Leather Bottle, just down the road from the College. They also do a Thursday evening quiz night if you’re the competitive type.
4. Dundonald Park
Many of our students and staff walk through the park on their way to college, and it’s easy to see why. Located opposite the College, Dundonald Park is the perfect place to have a picnic at lunchtime on warmer days, or a great place to get some fresh air and go for a walk when you need a break from studying.
5. Wimbledon Farmers’ Market
If you like to support farmers by buying fresh, local produce, then you will be happy to know that every Saturday from 9am – 1pm there is a Farmers’ Market at Wimbledon Park Primary School. You can expect seasonal cut flowers, organic meat and poultry, goats’ milk and cheese, and a huge range of fruit and vegetables.
6. Wimbledon Village Stables
The village is another gorgeous spot in Wimbledon with lots of pubs, restaurants and boutique shops, but if you’re an animal lover there is also a village stables that offer horse riding through Wimbledon Common for both members and non-members.
7. The Work and Play Scrap Store in Tooting
Okay, so it’s not quite Wimbledon, but it’s not too far off. The Work and Play Scrap Store is a fantastic registered charity that collects donations of all sorts of materials for craft makers to enjoy. You’ll find everything there from fabric and trimmings to paper, paint and bubble wrap, which makes it a perfect place for Wimbledon students to visit for course supplies. Most things are free to take – all you need to pay is £30 a year for a student membership and you can use it as your own personal supplies cupboard!
8. Cannizaro Park
Just off the Westside of Wimbledon Common, Cannizaro Park is a Grade II listed park that is a perfect place to relax when the busyness of London life gets a bit too much. The park also holds many artistic and cultural events, including The Cannizaro Park Open Air Theatre in summer and the Cannizaro Studios Open Weekends, where you can see work from local painters, printmakers, ceramicists and sculptors.
So what are you waiting for? Get out there and explore all that Wimbledon has to offer! If you visit any of our suggested places above, or if you find your own hidden gem in Wimbledon, make sure you tag us @WimbledonUAL on social media so we can see it for ourselves.