Formerly Croxted or Croxsted Lane, or Crokstrete (suggesting an allusion to its crooked route as one possible origin for the name) and forming (from Herne Hill southwards) the greater part of the western boundary of the old Manor. First mentioned, as Crokstrete, in 1335. At some time between 1444 and 1557 Croxted Lane had become the standard name for it. In 1821 a letter from Lord Thurlow’s Solicitor complained that Mr Swan [of Belair], in widening his ditch, had cut into Crockshutt [sic] Lane instead of his own estate, to the danger and inconvenience of cottages at the lower end of the lane. Writing in 1880, John Ruskin included (in ‘Fiction - Fair and Foul’) a description of Croxted Lane as it then was: ’Half-a-dozen handfuls of cottages are dropped here and there; the lane is a deep-rutted cart-road, diverging into various pieces of waste, and bordered in heaps of everything unclean; ashes and rags, beer bottles and old shoes [etc, etc]’. Again, in ‘Praeterita’ (1885) he wrote: ’In my young days Croxted Lane was a green by-road little else than a narrow strip of untilled field… I have already noted with thankfulness the good I got out of the tadpole-haunted ditch in Croxted Lane.’