The Twickenham Museum
Exhibitions : People at Work

Nurserymen and Market Gardeners
In the 19th century Twickenham and Isleworth were important constituents of what was known as The Garden of England.

Frank Peacock

Commercial market gardening and fruit growing were extremely important in the locality in the 19th and 20th centuries and provided much employment. A 1906 report stated that “a farm of 50 to 100 acres might employ 60 to 120 hands”. The Nurseries even attracted workers from Germany, France and Belgium. In the 19th century Twickenham and Isleworth were important constituents of what was known as The Garden of England.

After the railway arrived in 1848, market gardening increased further, exploiting easier transport links. At the same time, due to growing housing needs, the market gardens were pushed further out of town.

Thus, as Twickenham developed, the gardens moved towards Whitton. The number of Nurseries in Twickenham peaked in about 1870 but in Hampton the peak did not come until well into the 20th century, and a few lasted until after 1970. Much of this production was spurred by the enormous growth in the population of London, which rose six-fold between 1801 and 1901, from 1.1 to 6.6 million.

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