At the beginning of the month I spent quite a bit of time in the Twickenham area, I know, I’m really selling the area with the above photo. With time to kill, on one of the days I was there, I went on the Three Rivers Walk (if you do this walk, don’t be fooled by the website, it’s 8 miles not 8 kilometres), which covers the River Crane (which I think is the river in the photo above), the Duke of Northumberland’s River and the Thames. The Crane and the Duke of Northumberland did have some nice bits but it was mostly either industrial and/or rugby stadium. The paths were often narrow and muddy, which for this non-swimmer walker, always freaks me out a little.
Some of the Three Rivers Walk, basically the Thames bit, I was already familiar with from either the Capital Ring or from other local walks I’ve done. I liked that bit and I was particularly pleased to discover more of one area that I’d only briefly walked through, once before. The aforementioned ‘bit’ is just before Twickenham if you’re walking along the Thames in a westerly direction. The whole area looks like it has a side gig subbing for Georgian London in Dickens adaptations and is very pretty.
Anyway when I got to the Georgian bit, the Three Rivers route was insisting that I detoured away from the Thames to a place called York House, which despite being relatively local, I’d never heard of before, so I went to have a look and wow, how could I have missed this?
I don’t know if you can go into the house, but the grounds are basically a public park, I will have to come back here in the summer.
The grounds are separated by a road (which I had walked down before, not knowing that York House was there) and you cross from the main body of the grounds by the house, to the grounds by the river, over this little, ornamental stone bridge. Once over the bridge, there are more gardens, with very over friendly, fat squirrels and this totally mad water feature.
I was in Twickenham again the next weekend. I had spotted the previous weekend, that Eel Pie Island Art Studios were going to be open and to be honest, even if I wasn’t already going to be in the area, I think I would have made the trip because I’ve always wanted to cross the bridge over on to the private residential island and the studios are only open twice a year.
You have to walk through the island to get to the studios and the houses on the way, were often on the artistic side.
The art studios themselves are in a working boatyard. As well as boats being fixed, there are boats everywhere else too, some being used as art studios or as perches for cats.
And as I was back in the area, I went for another look at the mad water feature.
I also went to the Orleans Gallery (lovely embroidered map of the local area) and planned to see Marble Hill House but it wasn’t open, so took a photo of a mushroomed tree stump instead.
This month I also went to see the Kew Garden’s Christmas lights, the origami boats were my favourites.
I also went to see the ice outside Tate Modern. The lumps of ice, which were there for about a week, had been fished out of the water in (if I remember correctly) Greenland, bits that had fallen off icebergs/glaciers due to global warming. The idea being that if people could actually come and touch the ice, it might bring home the effects of global warming in a bit more of an ecologically efficient way than going to see the icebergs themselves, as the energy it took to get one of the ice lumps from Greenland to Tate Modern was the same as if one person flew to Greenland and back to see the icebergs in person, therefore bringing the ice to London would hopefully get the message to more people than just that one theoretical person flying there and back. It certainly was awing seeing and feeling the ice.
I also went to see the Gingerbread City at the V&A. The entire room smelt gloriously of gingerbread.
I’ve had lots of lovely walks in Richmond Park, this month. The photo at the very top of this post is from there. Other photos from Richmond Park this month have included this panorama.
And finally, even just walking to the shops can provide photo opportunities; Kingston Bridge in the fog.