Harold Park

Harold Park, Havering

The north-eastern part of Harold Wood, mostly occupying an isthmus of land between the A12 and the Ingrebourne River

geograph photo 5391273 - Harold Court

In 1868 a wealthy Brent­wood solic­i­tor built him­self a man­sion to the south of the riv­er and rail­way line, named Harold Court. After the owner’s bank­rupt­cy the house served as a children’s home, then a lunatic asy­lum and then a sana­to­ri­um. In 1959 it became a teacher train­ing col­lege and has since been con­vert­ed into pri­vate flats. Harold Court is shown in the pho­to above.*

Horse Block Farm lay to the north-east of Harold Court Road. After the First World War the Essex builders Iles and Com­pa­ny laid out a bun­ga­low estate here that it called Sun­ny­town. The com­pa­ny also cre­at­ed Sun­nymede at Bil­ler­icay.

Ingre­way, part of the Sun­ny­town bun­ga­low estate

When Harold Court pri­ma­ry school opened in 1929 the area still retained a rur­al char­ac­ter, but this was slow­ly erod­ed as fur­ther devel­op­ment plugged the gaps, includ­ing a river­side indus­tri­al estate that was cre­at­ed after the Sec­ond World War on the site of a brick­works that had oper­at­ed inter­mit­tent­ly from 1878 to 1933.

A ser­vice sta­tion on the A12 and the lit­tle Bap­tist church at the cor­ner of Harold Court Road and Ingre­way are among the few insti­tu­tions around here to actu­al­ly use the name ‘Harold Park’ rather than ‘Harold Court’ or ‘Harold Wood’.

At the Forestry Com­mis­sion’s Harold Court Woods over 40,000 saplings have been plant­ed to sup­ple­ment belts of mature trees, includ­ing an Apos­tles’ Cir­cle – where a ring of horse chest­nuts sur­round a cen­tral tree to rep­re­sent Christ and his dis­ci­ples.

Postcode area: Romford RM3
* The picture of Harold Court at the top of this page is adapted from an original photograph, copyright Marathon, at Geograph Britain and Ireland, made available under the Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 Generic Licence. Any subsequent reuse is hereby freely permitted under the terms of that licence.