And whatever else the Treasury was spending our money on, it certainly wasn't any effort to "beautify Battersea Park in London", which didn't exist at the time of the potato famine. When it was created a few years later, the actual sum spent was over £300,000. Most of that was the cost of buying Battersea Fields, an eyseore and haunt of 'highwaymen, vagabonds and travelling roughs' where the police dare not venture. Battersea Park and others like it were created not as mere cosmetic additions to the fabric of London, but as the 'lungs of the city' and a means of providing some relief for all Londoners from the depressing monotony of brick and concrete. No doubt money was spent on projects far less urgent than the needs of the poor throughout Britain as well as Ireland, but Battersea Park is innocent of all charges.