Tom Phillips - 20 Slideshows

20 Slideshows

12. The Old Tennis Court. c. 3.15 pm.

  • 1973

  • 1974

  • 1975

  • 1976

  • 1977

  • 1978

  • 1979

  • 1980

  • 1981

  • 1982

  • 1983

  • 1984

  • 1985

  • 1986

  • 1987

  • 1988

  • 1989

  • 1990

  • 1991

  • 1992

  • 1993

  • 1994

  • 1995

  • 1996

  • 1997

  • 1998

  • 1999

  • 2000

  • 2001

  • 2002

  • 2003

  • 2004

  • 2005

  • 2006

  • 2007

  • 2008

  • 2009

  • 2010

  • 2011

  • 2012

  • 2013

  • 2014

  • 2015

  • 2016

  • 2017

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This site was chosen for its rus in urbe quality and, in the vein of the last three sites which become progressively depopulated, features no people at all (except in 1981 when a couple appear in error but nonetheless partake of the pastoral atmosphere). Though there are no humans this site is our main wildlife section including over the years a magpie, a goat, a cat and a dog. The goat (quite a coup in Camberwell) is attached to the adventure playground which now exists behind us to the left.

The small shed marked PRIVATE slowly seems to dissolve into the undergrowth. The most dramatic episode in the history of the site was only missed by a day or two: the sole evidence that survives in 20 Sites that in 1977 the old tennis courts were for a brief span a gipsy encampment full of caravans and washing lines is the child's scooter abandoned in their apparently hasty departure. Corrugated iron is erected and the ground is ploughed.

In 1980 a strange artwork appears in the form of a kind of Woodhenge, an elegant alignment of short thick posts to which no function can be ascribed. By 1987 they too have almost dissolved into the undergrowth, though in 1989 they reemerge as if exposed by archaeologists.