St. Mark’s Churchyard is an open space surrounding the historic St. Mark’s Church at Kennington, close to Oval Underground Station, the KIA Oval (home to Surrey County Cricket Club) and Kennington Park.
The church was originally designed as one of the four ‘Waterloo churches’ in Lambeth dedicated to the Evangelists, and first consecrated for worship in 1824.
The churchyard was originally part of the ‘Little Common’ of the Manor of Kennington. This site was also known as ‘Gallows Common’ or ‘Gallows Green’, because until the start of the 19th Century it was the site for executions of criminals and highwaymen who had been committed to death at the Surrey Assize Courts. Following a special Act of Parliament to enclose the common, part of the site was used to construct a new church.
In the 1950s the church grounds were passed to Lambeth Borough Council and laid out as a public open space, which involved relocating headstones to the boundary walls and creating new grassed areas. The churchyard is well used with a small children’s playground and is the site of the 'Oval Farmer's Market', which takes place most Saturdays through the year.
Other useful information
Oval Farmer's Market - Oval Farmer's Market