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Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre

Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre tells the story of Merton and its people through a changing programme of exhibitions and events. The Centre also offers educational services for local schools and adult learners as well as access to a wide range of local history resources.

Location and opening hours

Morden Library

Monday to Friday 9.30am to 7.00pm
Saturday 9.30am to 5.00pm

What we hold

Our collection includes local history information on Colliers Wood, Merton, Mitcham, Morden, Pollards Hill, Raynes Park, Wimbledon and West Barnes. 

Sources include photographs of historic Merton and its various districts, local maps, electoral registers and trade directories, Council minute and agenda books, a small collection of Merton parish registers (up to 1812), genealogical guides and resources, local biographical resources, a large collection of local history books, articles and ephemera, local history magazines and periodicals as well as specialist collections on Merton Priory, Admiral Lord Nelson, William Morris and the Arts & Crafts Movement.

Library users can also enjoy free access to the Ancestry website via public computers. 

Services offered

The Centre provides a range of services including exhibitions, events, a research service, services for schools and adult learners and a local history shop. 

Exhibitions on the heritage of Merton

You will find a changing programme of displays on the history of Merton and its people at the centre. These often feature historic documents and objects which can be handled by visitors to the Centre. 

Research Service

If you are unable to visit in person, we offer a limited research service charging £5.00 per half hour and £10.00 per hour. 

We undertake a minimum of half an hour’s research and a maximum of 3 hours research per enquiry. Fees are inclusive of VAT, postage and up to five photocopies.

To find out more about requesting the research service please call 020 8545 3239 or email us.   

Reproduction and Photography

You can request copies or reproduce items held by Merton Heritage & Local Studies Centre. Contact us to find out more about this service. 

Educational Services

The Heritage & Local Studies Centre offers a range of educational services to schools, colleges and community groups. These include resource box loans, themed class sessions, local history talks, collection tours and project advice. 

Local History Shop

We offer a wide range of local history books, postcards and facsimile maps at competitive prices. If you are unable to visit in person, we can also send goods by post. At present we can only accept cash and cheque payments. Contact the centre for more information on books and publications.  

The Merton Memories Project

Merton Heritage Service is currently working to increase access to a unique collection of historic photographs. As part of the Merton Memories Project, which is supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, staff and volunteers are working to scan, research and catalogue over 15,000 photographs charting the history of Merton from Victorian times to the present day.

In the Spring of 2014, a new range of resources will be launched to raise awareness of the borough’s past. These will include:  

  • A Merton Memories website enabling people to view and learn about historic images of the borough.

  • Educational resources for schools and community groups. Our Local Area packs will combine pictures of bygone Merton, with extracts from historical documents, lesson plans and guidance notes.

  • Themed heritage sessions for school classes.

  • Exhibitions about the history of Merton, Mitcham and Wimbledon

  • Discovery Days – these events will feature local history talks, photographic workshops, children’s craft activities and guidance on using Merton’s Local Studies collection. 

For more information about the Merton Memories project, please contact us.

We are particularly keen to hear from Merton Schools and Community Groups that would like to be involved with our work.

Getting here

Buses: 80,93, 118, 154, 157, 163, 164, 293, 413, 201 and 470

Nearest Tube and Train: Morden (Northern Line), South Merton Station (ten minute walk), Morden South (ten minute walk). The Phipps Bridge and Morden Road Tramlink stops are both a ten minute walk away from the Centre. Pay and display car parks are available nearby at Sainsburys and York Close. 

See also

Contact us

Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre,
2nd floor, Morden Library,
Merton Civic Centre,
London Road
Morden SM4 5DX

Tel. 020 8545 3239/4038  
Email: local.studies@merton.gov.uk  

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