Battersea Park covers 200 acres (83 hectares) of land on the south bank of the River Thames in the London Borough of Wandsworth. It was opened in 1858 and is a mixture of marshland reclaimed from the Thames and land formerly used for market gardens. The park includes the Battersea Park Nature Areas which are a Local Nature Reserve.
Various species of birds make the park their home, notably those that live on and around the lake. Most commonly spotted are types of waterfowl, herons and cormorants. Although recent RSPB bird spotting events have also seen peregrine falcons, kestrels and sparrowhawks; as well as Great spotted woodpeckers and Green woodpeckers.
There are numerous different gardens providing a range of habitats for insects, fungi, birds and small mammals with their varied planting. These include a Sub Tropical Garden with colourful orchids and unusual plants; an Old English Garden; and a new Winter Garden which will transform a neglected area of the park.
The park officially opens from 8am to dusk, but in practice the gates are often opened longer to allow access to facilities.
The park’s features include a lake (around three hectares/ 7 acres) and several outdoor sporting facilities, including tennis courts, a running track and football pitches. There are also facilities for rowing, rollerblading, bowls, boules and croquet, as well as all-weather Astroturf pitches currently used by several West London hockey teams.
Fishing is permitted in the southern part of the lake (16 June to 14 March, by permit only). Cycling is confined to the carriage driveways. There are children’s playground
The nearest railway stations are Battersea Park and Queenstown Road (Battersea).