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Tooting is a suburb in the London Borough of Wandsworthmarker in south Londonmarker. It is south south-west of Charing Crossmarker. The area is identified in the London Plan as one of 35 major centres in Greater London.


Tooting has been settled since pre-Saxon times, and its name means "the dwelling of the sons of Totas". The Romans built Stane Street from Londonmarker (Londinium) to Chichestermarker (Regnum), which passed through Tooting. Tooting High Street is built on this road. In 666 AD, Tooting and Streathammarker (then Toting-cum-Stretham) was given to the Abbey of Chertseymarker. Then in 900 AD, Suene (Sweyn), believed to be a Viking, was given the land by Edward the Confessor. It was later passed on to again: in 933 AD, King Athelstan of England gave lands including Totinge (Tooting) to the family of Chertsey Minster.

Tooting appears in Domesday Book of 1086 as Totinges. It was held by Haimo the Sheriff (of Kentmarker) from Chertsey Abbeymarker. Its domesday assets were: 1 church, 2½ ploughs, of meadow. It rendered £4. Tooting Becmarker appears as a distinct area. It was held partly by St Mary de Bec-Hellouin Abbey and partly by Westminster Abbey. Its domesday assets were: 5 hide. It had 5½ ploughs, 13 acres. It rendered £7.

As with many of South London's urban suburbs, Tooting developed largely during the late Victorian years. Some development occurred in the Edwardian years but another large spurt happened during the 1920s and '30s.

Cultural references

The BBC comedy series Citizen Smith was set in Tooting and popularised the cry "Freedom for Tooting!". Star of the series Wolfie Smith (played by Robert Lindsay) was a beret-hatted Communist "leftie" type, founder of fictional revolutionary political organisation, the Tooting Popular Front.

In 2005, a 28-km diameter crater on Mars was named after Tooting. A geologic map of Tooting Crater is under preparation, and will be published by the U.S. Geological Survey in the United States.

The Kitchens of Distinction (who formed in the area) recorded 'On Tooting Broadway Station' on their 1992 album The Death of Cool.

British TV police drama 'The Bill' is frequently filmed in and around Tooting.

Scottish singer-songwriter Sandi Thom found fame after she webcast 21 performances from her basement flat in Tooting between February and March 2006. Her track 'I Wish I Was A Punk Rocker (With Flowers In My Hair)' reached No1 in the UK charts on 2 June 2006.

Tooting Bec appears in the book The Meaning of Liff, defined as the situation in which a driver sounds his or her horn at a car in front, only to discover that the car in front is parked.

In the third series of the popular British comedy sketch show Little Britain it is uncovered that Dudley Punt's new found Thai bride Ting Tong Macadangdang is really from Tooting and not where she originally said she was from, a tiny village called Pong Pong, "Ting tong not from Pong Pong, Ting Tong from Tooting.".


The Member of Parliament for Tooting is Sadiq Khan, first elected at the 2005 General Election to represent the parliamentary constituency of Tootingmarker.

Councillors for Tooting Ward (elected May 2006) are Susan John-Richards (Independent), Alex Jacob (Conservative) and Dr Nick Bowes (Labour).

Open spaces

A large open area, popularly known as Tooting Commonmarker, lies at the northern end of Tooting. Historically this was two separate open spaces: Tooting Graveney Common nearer to Tooting, and Tooting Bec Common towards Streatham. The latter common Tooting Bec Lidomarker, which is 90 metres long and 30 metres wide making it undoubtedly the largest freshwater open air pool in the UK.


Tooting shares a football club with nearby Mitchammarker: Tooting & Mitcham United F.C.

One of London's few greyhound racing tracks, the Wimbledon Stadiummarker, is found in Tooting.

Former British and European Light Middleweight boxing champion Wayne Alexander was born in Tooting.


Tooting is positioned on the Northern Line — with stations at the top and the bottom of the hill that slopes down the High Street, Tooting Becmarker and Tooting Broadwaymarker. It also has good bus links, with routes to and from Central London, Croydonmarker, Suttonmarker and Richmondmarker, amongst others.

Tooting Broadway tube sign

Nearest railway stations


The Tooting Markets are open Monday to Saturday with a wide range of small independent marketplace sellers.

Tooting Broadway is a centre of the Muslim Pakistani community of south London. There are many Indian and Pakistani clothes shops, sweet shops and Restaurants. There are also many Somalis, Tamils, Poles and Jamaicansmarker in the area.

Tooting also plays host to a range of chain stores.

Notable people


External links

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