Our history

Earl BathhurstThe Park is named after Fairy Hall, a nearby older building on the site of Eltham College in Mottingham, once the residence of Henry, Earl Bathhurst (pictured) when he was Lord High Chancellor of England in the 18th Century.

Fairy Hill Park was once part of the Great Park; stretching from the present day North Park in Eltham down to Chislehurst.

King Henry VIII hunted deer in this area and spent much of his youth at Eltham Palace.

During the 17th Century many trees in the Great Park were cut down for shipbuilding and the deer were killed when the area was ransacked during the Civil War.

In the 18th Century the Shaw family built a racecourse from Eltham Lodge to Chislehurst via what are now Broad Lawn/Fairy Hill Park and The Course at Coldharbour.

From the 1830s, by which time the last of the trees had been felled, the land reverted to farmland and the area became part of Chapel Farm. In 1886 the railway was built and cut across Chapel Farm.

At the turn of the 20th Century this area became a Gun Shoot used by many dignataries when they purchase from Edwin (Ted) Churchill, the famous London Gunsmith, who owned The Tarn Lodge. Churchill had a shooting ground at Eltham in Kent, where his customers could receive tuition and also be provided with ample practice.

The ParkIn 1923 Chapel Farm was sliced through yet again when the A20 Sidcup Road was built, creating a separate piece of grazing land between the A20 and the railway line.

On 24th July 1934 the Crown offered this 11-and-a-half acre site to the London County Council for the sum of £7,250 for the purpose of building a park and children’s playground.

Prior to the opening of Fairy Hill Park in April 1938, an open ditch on the western boundary was piped underground across the park under the railway and into the Tarn.

In 1965, ownership of Fairy Hill Park changed when the LCC was take over by the Greater London Council.  In 1981, improved underground ditch pipes were laid and in 1986, ownership changed again to Greenwich Council, now the Royal London Borough of Greenwich.