In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Norwood like this:
NORWOOD, a sub-metropolitan tract in Lambeth and Croydon parishes. Surrey; extending along the N Eborder of the county, from the outskirts of the metropolis in the vicinity of Brixton and Dulwich, 4½ miles south-south-eastward, to the vicinity of Croydon. It is divided into Lower Norwood in the N, Upper Norwood in the middle, and South Norwood in the S; it contains three villages of the same names as the three divisions; it includes, on the E border, the Crystal palace and park; itis traversed by the West end, Crystal palace, and Croydon railway, and has stations on it at Lower Norwood, Gipsy Hill, the Crystal palace, and South Norwood, the last of which bears the name of Norwood Junction; it has post-offices‡ of Norwood-Crownhill, Lower Norwood, Lower Norwood-High-street, South Norwood, Anerley-Road, and Westow Hill, all under London S; and it contains several large hotels, many well-built detached houses, numerous villas, and not a few mansions. ...
It took its name from a wood, famous for oaks; it was, from an early period, a favourite haunt of gipsies, who infestedit on account of its woody retreats and of its vicinity to London; it continues still to be finely wooded, not in the forest manner, but ornately and picturesquely; it has atumulated and hilly surface, rising in some parts to a height of more than 300 feet; it abounds in charming close scenes, and includes stand-points commanding extensive and charming prospects; and it enjoys a healthy climate, and is altogether an attractive suburban region. A hotel, called the Norwood hotel, stands very pleasantlyon the crown of a hill, near the Crystal palace. The Norwood or South Metropolitan cemetery lies in Lower Norwood, occupies about 40 acres, and displays much taste and beauty. Two potteries, for the manufacture of red earthenware, are at Lower Norwood and South Norwood. Three chapelries, called Norwood, St. Luke, Norwood-All Saints, and Norwood, St. Mark, were formed respectively in 1824 in Lower Norwood, in 1845 in Upper Norwood, and in 1859 in South Norwood; and will be separately noticed. Two other chapelries are Gipsy Hill and Tulse Hill. A church for another chapelry, called Norwood, St. Paul, was built in 1866 in Anerley-road; was preceded, for the use of its congregation, by a temporary iron-church in Hamlet-road; is in the early French pointed style, of brick with various stone-dressings; consists of nave, aisles, transept, and apse, with vestry and tower; and cost £5, 200. There are chapels for Independents, Baptists, and Wesleyans; several national and British schools; a pauper school, in Upper Park-road, for Lambeth parish; the Westmoreland Society's school, at Tulse Hill; and a Roman Catholic convent on the ground formerly occupied by the Parkhotel.
A Vision of Britain through Time includes a large library of local statistics for administrative units. For the best overall sense of how the area containing Norwood has changed, please see our redistricted information for the modern district of Lambeth. More detailed statistical data are available under Units and statistics, which includes both administrative units covering Norwood and units named after it.
GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Norwood, in Lambeth and Surrey | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.
Date accessed: 03rd July 2015
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