Wooden carved horse heads at Horseferry playground
Horseferry playground in Victoria Tower Gardens

Horseferry playground

The Horseferry Playground in Victoria Tower Gardens features a sandpit, swings, a wide slide, dance chimes and a water play installation designed to represent the River Thames.

Surrounding the playground are metal railings, designed by artist Chris Campbell, based around a River Thames theme. They depict events such as The Great Fire of London and Lord Nelson's Funeral Barge, and includes views of the River Thames where landmarks such as St Paul's Cathedral and The Shard are visible.

Horseferry playground's name is inspired by the ferry which existed on the site of what is now Lambeth Bridge. Owned by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the ferry dates back to the sixteenth century and was an important crossing over the Thames, from Westminster Palace to Lambeth Palace.

The playground in Victoria Tower Gardens was orginally created in 1923 and consisted of a large sandpit funded by paper merchant and local philanthropist Henry Spicer. His vision was to provide an exciting and safe area for children, especially those from poorer neighbourhoods, to play and socialise together.

Details at a glance

Age range

  • Suitable for children up to the age of 12


  • Public toilets

Opening times

January 10am-4pm May 10am-7:30pm September 10am-7pm
February 10am-5pm June 10am-7:30pm October (BST) 10am-6pm
March 10am-6pm July 10am-7:30pm October (GMT) 10am-5pm
April 10am-7:30pm August 10am-7:30pm November 10am-4pm
    December 10am-4pm

Last entry to the playground is 30 minutes before closing time. The playground is closed all day on 25th December.