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48.4% White British 2.2% White Irish 0.1% White Gypsy or Irish Traveller 14.2% Other White 1.3% White & Black Caribbean 0.6% White & Black African 1.4% White "> A map showing the wards of Merton since 2002 Main article: Merton London Borough Council

The May 2014 local government elections saw the Labour Party win an overall majority, following the gain of seven seats from the Conservative Party, and one from UKIP. This followed four years as a minority administration. The current council has a Labour majority of 12 and its composition is:

* Labour: 36 * Conservatives: 20 * Merton Park Residents: 3 * Liberal Democrats: 1

MAYORS

At the Annual Council Meeting, a ceremonial mayor is elected to serve for a year. At the same time, it elects a deputy mayor to serve alongside the mayor. Since 1978, each Mayor must also be an elected councillor. Cllr Brenda Fraser who is a Labour councillor and represents Longthornton ward is currently the Mayor of the London Borough of Merton with Stan Anderson, councillor from Lower Morden ward, as her deputy.

MEDIA

A lot of filming for former ITV police drama The Bill
The Bill
took place in Merton, particularly in the districts of Mitcham
Mitcham
and Colliers Wood . The set of Sun Hill police station was also located in the Borough.

The main local newspaper in Merton is the Wimbledon Guardian with two editions, Wimbledon along with Mitcham
Mitcham
and Morden
Morden
. This newspaper was founded in 1977 by a former Conservative councillor on Merton Council, but since then the paper has been sold on and it is now widely published in different editions across South London. The main difference between the papers is the front page. The Wimbledon Post is another local newspaper published weekly. Both newspapers are available free, though there is a charge if bought from a newsagent. They are published each Thursday.

ECONOMY

Square Enix Europe has its head office in Wimbledon Bridge House in Wimbledon . Eidos Interactive , a subsidiary of Square Enix, also shares the same head office.

EDUCATION

Main article: List of schools in Merton

TRANSPORT

Merton is served by a wide range of National Rail
National Rail
stations across the borough, as well as the southern tip of London
London
Underground 's Northern line and the District line on the Wimbledon branch. The borough is also served by several London
London
Tramlink
Tramlink
stops from Wimbledon, that goes to Croydon
Croydon
, New Addington , Elmers End and Beckenham . It is the only London
London
Borough which has tube, rail and tram services.

London
London
Underground stations

* Colliers Wood * South Wimbledon * Morden
Morden
* Wimbledon Park * Wimbledon

Tramlink
Tramlink
stops

* Wimbledon * Dundonald Road * Merton Park * Morden
Morden
Road * Phipps Bridge * Belgrave Walk * Mitcham
Mitcham
* Mitcham
Mitcham
Junction

National Rail
National Rail
stations

* Tooting * Haydons Road * Wimbledon * Wimbledon Chase * South Merton * Morden
Morden
South * St Helier * Mitcham
Mitcham
Junction * Mitcham
Mitcham
Eastfields * Raynes Park * Motspur Park

In March 2011, the main forms of transport that residents used to travel to work were: driving a car or van, 19.2% of all residents aged 16-74; underground, metro, light rail, tram, 13.0%; train, 13.0%; bus, minibus or coach, 7.5%; on foot, 5.0%; work mainly at or from home, 3.4%; bicycle, 2.4%.

DEMOGRAPHICS AND SOCIAL CONDITIONS

In 2001, the census recorded that 25% of the population of the borough was from an ethnic minority . The highest ethnic populations were recorded in wards in the east of the borough ( Mitcham
Mitcham
, Eastfields and Pollards Hill ). The percentage of population from ethnic minorities is predicted to rise across the borough within the next decade.

According to the council's comparative assessment of wards made in 2004, the most deprived wards within the borough were in the south and east where unemployment rates, educational attainment and the quality of health were worst. The most affluent wards were in the north and west of the borough.

Comparative crime rates appear to be unrelated to the deprivation ranking of wards. The wards containing Mitcham
Mitcham
town centre and the St Helier Estate are ranked highest for crime within Merton with the wards containing the commercial shopping centres of Colliers Wood and Wimbledon also featuring high in the ranking.

The constituency area of Wimbledon is an affluent area of London
London
with a high proportion of city workers, while Mitcham
Mitcham
and Morden
Morden
is relatively deprived by comparison, which explains the geographical split of political representation of the borough at both national and local elections.

Merton currently operates a Police Cadet scheme under the Metropolitan Police Service.

POPULATION CENSUS

YEAR POP. ±%

1801 4,831 —

1811 5,656 +17.1%

1821 6,433 +13.7%

1831 6,652 +3.4%

1841 7,364 +10.7%

1851 7,334 −0.4%

1861 14,118 +92.5%

1871 20,901 +48.0%

1881 27,684 +32.5%

1891 41,318 +49.2%

1901 63,273 +53.1%

1911 96,895 +53.1%

1921 122,245 +26.2%

1931 154,267 +26.2%

1941 174,151 +12.9%

1951 196,599 +12.9%

1961 187,074 −4.8%

1971 178,023 −4.8%

1981 165,098 −7.3%

1991 171,808 +4.1%

2001 187,908 +9.4%

2011 199,693 +6.3%

Note:

FEATURES OF INTEREST

WIMBLEDON TENNIS TOURNAMENT

Each year The Championships, Wimbledon , better known as simply Wimbledon, one of the four tennis Grand Slam tournaments (along with the US , French and Australian Opens ) is held at the All England
England
Lawn Tennis
Tennis
and Croquet Club in Church Road Wimbledon . The event takes place over a fortnight at the end of June and beginning of July and is the largest annual sporting event to take place in the United Kingdom with over 200,000 visitors during the Wimbledon fortnight.

FOOTBALL

The borough gained a football team in 1889 when Wimbledon Old Centrals were founded, and were soon a member of the local football leagues. The club later adopted the title Wimbledon FC and moved into a new stadium at Plough Lane in 1912, where it would spend the next 79 years. As the 20th century wore on, the club enjoyed considerable success in non league football. The club was elected to the Football League in 1977 and enjoyed a great run of success when began in 1983 with the Fourth Division title, and saw them reach the First Division in 1986 - a mere nine years after joining the Football League. They quickly established themselves in the highest division of English football, and as clear underdogs, pulled off a shock win in the 1988 FA Cup Final against Liverpool , England\'s most successful and dominant club side in Europe during that era. They were founder members of the FA Premier League in 1992 and survived at that level until 2000, before relocating to Milton Keynes
Milton Keynes
, some 70 miles away in Buckinghamshire
Buckinghamshire
, in a controversial move in 2003, being rebranded as Milton Keynes
Milton Keynes
Dons in 2004. The club had left its Plough Lane stadium in 1991 to ground-share with Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park , with numerous plans to build a new stadium in a number of different locations (including back in London
London
and even in Dublin
Dublin
or Cardiff
Cardiff
) being considered over the following decade before the club's owners chose Milton Keynes
Milton Keynes
as their destination.

However, a new Wimbledon club - AFC Wimbledon - was formed to represent the local area in 2002 by fans of the original club after the move to Milton Keynes
Milton Keynes
was given the go-ahead. The new Wimbledon club's progress was rapid, and after just nine years in existence they won promotion to the Football League
Football League
in 2011. The club currently plays at Kingsmeadow Stadium, the home of Kingstonian F.C.
Kingstonian F.C.
, but its long-term target is to build a new stadium in the London
London
Borough of Merton.

The borough also has five non-League football clubs: Colliers Wood United F.C. who play at Wibbandune Sports Ground; Raynes Park Vale F.C. who play at Prince George's Fields; Tooting and Merton Forest F.C who also play at Prince George's Fields.

BAITUL FUTUH MOSQUE

Baitul Futuh
Baitul Futuh
Mosque

In 2003, the largest mosque in western Europe was opened in Morden. The Baitul Futuh
Baitul Futuh
mosque can accommodate 10,000 people and was built at a cost of £5.5 million entirely donated voluntarily by the Ahmadiyya Community . The mosque has been voted in the top 50 in the world by Spectator magazine. It is also acting as the centre for the 'Loyalty, Freedom and Peace' campaign in order to improve the integration of Muslims and non Muslims alike.

TELEVISION

THIS SECTION NEEDS EXPANSION. You can help by adding to it . (September 2010)

The Talkback Thames television studio on Deer Park Road was used as Sun Hill Police Station in the ITV police drama The Bill
The Bill
from its inception in 1984 until it was axed in 2010.

SISTER CITIES

* Irving , Texas
Texas
, United States
United States

REFERENCES

* ^ 2011 Census: Ethnic group, local authorities in England
England
and Wales, Office for National Statistics (2012). See Classification of ethnicity in the United Kingdom
United Kingdom
for the full descriptions used in the 2011 Census. * ^ "The Mayor of Merton". Merton London Borough Council . * ^ "About us". Square Enix Europe . * ^ "2011 Census: QS701EW Method of travel to work, local authorities in England
England
and Wales". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 23 November 2013. Percentages are of all residents aged 16-74 including those not in employment. Respondents could only pick one mode, specified as the journey’s longest part by distance. * ^ "Merton: Total Population". A Vision of Britain Through Time. Great Britain Historical GIS Project. Retrieved 6 September 2011. * ^ "1889 to 1899". Memories of The Dons. historicaldons.com. Archived from the original on 6 February 2012. * ^ " Plough Lane - Wimbledon". Wayback Machine . Old Football Grounds. * ^ "1970 to 1979". Memories of The Dons. historicaldons.com. Archived from the original on 19 February 2012. * ^ "1980 to 1989". Memories of The Dons. historicaldons.com. Archived from the original on 30 September 2011. * ^ "The second coming of Wimbledon". BBC Sport - Football . 25 November 2010. * ^ " AFC Wimbledon 0-0 Luton Town (4-3 on pens)". BBC Sport - Football . 21 May 2011. * ^ "New stadium update featured on the agenda". * ^ https://www.merton.gov.uk/leisure/history-heritage/architecture/mordenmosque.htm Baitul Futuh
Baitul Futuh
- top 50 buildings in the world Spectator magazine * ^ Muslim's for 'Loyalty, Freedom & Peace' Campaign * ^ "Talkback Thames". IMDb . * ^ "Interactive City Directory". Sister Cities International
Sister Cities International
. Retrieved 12 March 2014.

EXTERNAL