An unofficial brief

History of 
Norwood Grove
The plaque on the left records an even briefer history, and a larger version and the wording is on this page (or click on the plaque on the left). 

Norwood Grove was recorded as part of Lime Common in the Domesday Book. Although many histories note that the area was a shooting estate around a shooting box presented to the 1st. Earl of Portland by Chas II in 1635 modern thinking is that that was not on the site of the current Mansion.

The Great North Wood (from whence the name Norwood) covered this entire area and small but insightful traces of it exist in such places as Biggin Wood, and the Knight's Hill Nature Reserve. 

In the early 19th. century the current mansion was built and was occupied by Arthur Anderson from about 1847. Anderson was joint founder of the Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Co., known to us now as P&O and was a local philanthropist (I was told that he even bailed out Crystal Palace Football Club, but unlike Murdoch didn't want to own it!). The lodge and the rose arbour were both built during this period.

The next famous residents were Mr. & Mrs. Frederick Nettlefold (see the plaque on this page). Fred's father was a founder of the works which produced the first successfully marketed mechanically formed wood screws in the U.K., and Nettlefolds is now the N in GKN. 

In 1924 Covington and his committee raised the cash necessary to purchase the Norwood Grove and some surrounding fields and there was a grand opening by the then Prince of Wales in 1926. The bird bath honours Covington and the road at the bottom was named after him.

One wing of the house and the fountain were damaged during the war, but since then vandals and thieves have replaced the Luftwaffe as the main cause of damage. The fountain was partly restored and the four cherubs supporting the bowl represent the seasons - on the right Spring is seen sowing seeds.

The Mansion is part of the European heritage open days scheme and is opened for part of the day once a year: these page details the 1998 Norwood Grove Mansion open day and the 2000 Norwood Grove Mansion open day (both quite graphics intensive pages).

There is a much fuller history in the Croydon booklet "Norwood Grove" and I am also grateful to the Chairman of the Friends of Norwood Grove for assistance.

Historical plaques in Norwood Grove.

Norwood Grove Mansion open day 1998

Norwood Grove Mansion open day 2000

Back to Norwood Grove home page.

  URL: Latest update: 15th. September 1998.