With its village common, ancient pond and historic 18th century inn, Ham Common has all the character, charm and appeal of a quintessential English village. At the heart of the village, the common is a place to walk and ride, a venue for the annual summer fair and the backdrop for cricket matches played at the 200-year old Ham and Petersham Cricket Club.
A good selection of village shops supply all the daily provisions you’ll need – along with artisan breads, cakes, pastries, cooked meats, delicious cheeses, fresh fruit and vegetables, fine wines and hand-made chocolates. On Upper Ham Road, there’s a branch of Sainsbury’s and Ham Pantry delicatessen. If you want the taste of home-made food without the fuss, a ‘Cook’ shop is located next door to the delicatessen and there’s a choice of fine wines on offer at Taylors wine merchant.
For something a little different Ham Parade hosts a monthly market where you’ll find food and crafts. Ham village is also home to a local dental practice, a medical surgery and an optician’s – and Richmond, with a host of shops and services, is less than two miles away.
With a picturesque stretch of the River Thames on hand, there are plenty of opportunities to enjoy outdoor sports. Richmond Bridge Boat Club attracts rowers of all ages but, if you don’t want to power your own boat, there’s the Richmond Yacht Club on Eel Pie Island.
For golfers, there’s a stunning parkland course at Richmond Golf Club, adjoining Richmond Park and Ham Common.
For a different perspective on Richmond Park and Ham Common, take to the saddle; Ham House Stables is just one of the local riding schools. If you’re more of a spectator when it comes to horses, there’s no better place to watch ‘The Sport of Kings’ than Ham Polo Club.
There are so many ways of keeping fit in the area, whether you prefer to work out in a gym or fitness class – or just walk or ride around the park.
Ham and Petersham Lawn Tennis Club play on courts near Ham House and, in the summer, Richmond Lawn Tennis Club shares its ground, adjacent to Kew Gardens, with Richmond’s Archery and Cricket Club
Locals and visitors alike enjoy Ham Lands, the communal riverside meadows which have become a nature reserve, and the 120 acres of grassland and woodland on Ham Common. This abundance of green space and a sense of rural tranquillity make it difficult to believe that London’s West End is only 10 miles away.