The site was formerly within the grounds of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Lambeth Palace and in the late C19th the ‘local poor’ were given limited public access to what became known as Lambeth Palace Field.
At the northern end a garden area was dedicated to Octavia Hill, an energetic social campaigner for better housing and access to open spaces for the poor and disadvantaged, and one of the prime movers in the foundation of the National Trust. A Millennium Path has been created, telling the story of Lambeth’s history, and in 2010 a community orchard was opened in the north-west corner. The tree varieties selected reflect what would have been found here 200 years ago when the area had many market gardens and nurseries. The children’s playground was also refurbished in recent years.
The park was extended by the addition of land in compensation for the loss of green space due to building works at St Thomas’ Hospital and funding for shrub planting was received from the MPGA. The Founder’s Place development to the north of the park led by Guys’ and St Thomas’ Charity will bring improvements to Archbishop’s Park, yet to be finalised. Archbishop’s Park won the Green Flag Award in 2009, retaining this subsequently.