In a very small clearing (Nelson Gardens) off of a dual carriageway in Merton, South London lies the only original remnants of the home of a national hero, Admiral Horatio Lord Nelson (1758-1805).
These two cannons lie on what was once part of his vast 70 acre estate named Merton Place – a wonderful Georgian home to Nelson and Lady Emma Hamilton and their daughter Horatia, on and off between 1801-1805.
To Nelson it was ‘dear, dear Merton’ and to Emma ‘Paradise Merton’. Following his death at Trafalgar in October of 1805, Emma soon fell on hard times due to her extravagant lifestyle. She would die in Calais in 1815 destitute. The house was demolished and the land sold off by 1823. The cannons pictured here are believed to have originally sat on the lawn near to the original house.
What did Merton Place look like in its heyday? Visit the following link at Merton Council
Nelson Gardens is located behind the church of St John the Divine – built in 1913. Do stop by if you visit the gardens as the altar (see below) has its own connection to Nelson, being that it’s made out of timber from HMS Victory.