Ruskin Park Portico shelter
Restoration of the Portico shelter
Ruskin Park Portico survives from one of the handsome 18th century villas which encircled Denmark Hill in Camberwell. The villas were pulled down in 1906 and a park laid out named after the artist and writer John Ruskin (d.1900), who lived nearby. A gazebo was constructed from red brick with the feathered and wreathed capitals of the portico at its centre. A small paved rose garden is planted in front and a 19th century coach house is nearby. There is a 1907 bandstand and pleasure garden.
The Ruskin Park Portico has been restored poorly in the past and has been on the Heritage at Risk list for c. 20 years. The roof is damaged and brickwork cracked. In recent years it attracted anti-social behaviour Lambeth Council has been forced to close off access.
Restoration included removal of roof level steel joists to stabilise the structure, repairs to brickwork, replacing roof tiles, repairs to tiled floors, detailed joinery, repainting and opening up of the closed alcoves with new ornamental ironwork. It was re-landscaped on both sides so it can be used for community events.
The restoration of the Ruskin Park Portico is supported by HOLT with funding from The Wates Family Enterprise Trust.