For all of our Canadian chums, this isn’t Morden in Manitoba. For all of our UK chums, I bet you had no idea there was another Morden in Canada. For all of our Merton/Morden Councillors, you’ve missed a trick in the shape of free fact-finding jollies to a potential same-name, twin-town in Canada.
Although, to be fair to Merton Council, they haven’t succumbed to the twin-towning nonsense that blights most of our local councils. Apparently London’s best borough to be a councillor is Barnet. They have eight twin-towns to choose from for their holidays at the tax-payer’s expense. They have five in Europe, one in Africa, one in Asia and one in America. What larks!
London Underground’s Northern Line doesn’t go as far as Canada, although it sometimes feels like it, and Morden in the UK hasn’t got The Canadian Fossil Discovery Centre, which sounds like a fun day out for all the family.
Morden in Canada is a ‘city’ with a population of 8,668. Morden in South London has a population of 48,033 but city status has sadly eluded it, this is despite the valiant efforts of Merton Council to build a cathedral out of the area’s main natural resource i.e. leftover KFC chicken bones.
Our Morden in South London is the southernmost point of London’s Underground, and it’s not really famous for much else other than that. Thanks to Boris Johnson (and I never thought I’d ever say that) the Northern Line now runs a glorious twenty-four hours a day. Hence much of Morden’s 48,033 population is transitory, in that it hangs around outside the station in the early hours of the morning waiting for late night buses or Ubers to throw up in.
Unfortunately the census people turned up at 1am on a Saturday morning and counted them all as residents, the permanent population of Morden is just the 33 that work in Subway, KFC, Greggs, Wimpy and the wonderfully named ‘Kebaby’.
Morden Station itself is an interesting building. I always thought the station was Art Deco as it looks a bit squarey-roundy (technical term) and it was built in 1926. It appears I was wrong and it is actually a Modernist building. The subtle difference between the two architectural styles being the lack of Deco(r). In my architecturally uneducated, and late-night inebriated state as I waited for the last 157 bus, I decided to think of it as ‘Mordenist’. Which, at the time, I thought was quite clever.
Although I also thought it was quite clever to nip over to KFC for two Hot Wings at 99p and then miss the aforementioned last bus.
I’ve lost count of how many drunken pictures I’ve taken at Morden Station. I’m sure many of you have been in that same situation where eight pints of Fosters have magically turned you into Henri Cartier-Bresson. Thus you feel you have captured something special on your mobile phone. Sadly you haven’t. It might have looked great at two in the morning on your tidgey little phone screen but when you look at it properly the next day on your PC it looks a like a low resolution blur that could be anything from a low resolution blur to a low resolution blur.
However, I live not too far away from Morden and unlike most of Morden’s population I have actually seen Morden in the daylight. This is mostly because I chose to do my weekly shopping there as it has a Lidl, a Superdrug and an Iceland. Hence it has all that is needed to sustain human life on a budget. There is a Sainsbury’s as well, but that is only for the rich folk that live on the hill and not for the likes of us. I applied for a Nectar card once but my credit rating let me down.
So, for those of you that just see Morden as a nocturnal stepping stone to your front door, your spinning bedroom and the inevitable sick-bucket kindly provided by your partner or parents, think on. Morden has so much more to offer. There is Morden Hall Park, London’s largest mosque and a Lidl that does a mind-numbing premium lager at £2.69 for four cans, hence you can get ratted for just over a fiver. So why bother with the tube into London when you can sit outside the station dribbling, farting and swearing at passers-by?
I have to go now, apparently I have been arrested.
For more of Johnny’s jolly adventures in the UK, click here.