From London Gardens Online: The land here was open fields until the C18th when it was purchased by the Trustees of Guy's Hospital for use as a burial ground for deceased patients. It continued as a burial ground until the 1850s Burial Acts led to its closure. For a time it was leased to a local builder but in the 1890s part was purchased by Bermondsey Vestry for a much-needed public recreation ground, opening as Nelson Recreation Ground in 1899. Although it was refurbished after WWII war damage it became run down. It was renamed and refurbished after local residents set up Friends of Guy Street Park.