Saturday, 18 June 2011

All the small things: 10. Ravenscourt Park

Right, hold on to your hats kiddy winks. This is going to be a long old post.

Ravenscourt Park holds some lovely memories for me; when I first moved to the Bush it's where I first went running as I was still unsure of (and a little intimidated by) the streets I lived on. It's also where I spent lovely sunny days with NewMan last year, realising that maybe I did like him, a bit. (I would be lying if I said I'd not previously taken any other guys there and laid out on blankets with cider and newspapers with them.) I've also spent many a weekend afternoon there with CeCe when she would visit from out of town, and it was in Ravenscourt Park that she found out she was moving back to London. We squealed and bought ice cream to celebrate. (Interestingly we were in St James Park together, discussing how lovely London was on a summer's day three years later, she found out she was moving to Malaysia. I do miss her.) I've also spent lovely days there by myself musing about many things, good and bad.

Anyway, back to Ravenscourt Park. Found in between Hammersmith, Goldhawk Road and Stamford Brook, it is over 20 acres of lovely green space frequented by families, dog walkers (though there are dog free areas), football and basketball players, tennis players and bowlers, Chiswick Yummy Mummies, runners, joggers and walkers.

There has been an estate in the rough area of Ravenscourt Park as far back as the 13th century. This included a grand manor house used by the royal family over the centuries before being sold to a private owner in the early 1800s. Part of the estate has been open to the public since 1887 and a few years later the manor house became home to Hammersmith Library. Sadly in the Second World War the house was bombed extensively and only the stables remain, which are now the Park's cafe, Fait Maison. Ravenscourt Park as we know it now has been a council owned area since the early 1970s.

Ravenscourt Park is a wonderful park, well looked after and just about big and green enough to feel like you are escaping the Bush, should you ever wish to do so. I'll be honest sometimes I like to. There is a great community spirit within the park's boundaries thanks to no less than three children's playgrounds, weekend football clubs for kids, informally organised ball games and council run tennis courts. Despite the current weather's naughty behaviour, when the sun does decide to shine I recommend you head over to Ravenscourt Park for a walk, rest or to see and smell some beautiful flowers in the separate walled garden.

Here follows a lot of photographs, taken as I walked all around Ravenscourt Park. The pictures of aircraft were an added bonus as I was in the park at the time of the Queen's Birthday fly-by. You will also see a bit of the Bush has snuck this W6 park, I wonder if you will spot which photos I mean.

Happy weekend!

1 comment:

  1. Some of my very earliest memories as a child are from the park. There used to be a Wall's Ice-cream cart that went round the park. If we were very lucky we got a individual block of ice-cream in a square cone, or between wafers. The walled garden used to have a goldfish pond with a very small fountain in the center. I don't think many of the current enclosed areas where there either. It was much more open (apart from the around the lake).