London’s largest Royal Park

Richmond Park by Sue Lowry

It’s taken me half of my life to finally visit Richmond Park, London’s largest Royal Park in fact. Perhaps its only now that I tend to go for long walks with faithful Hound in tow that I have come to appreciate the beauty of nature – and it doesn’t come better than this beautiful park.

Richmond Park by Sue Lowry

I love an oak tree and this park is the UK’s leading site for ancient trees – there are more than 12,000 of them scattered about.

Pembroke Lodge by Sue Lowry

On this occasion however, I needed a diversion and sans Hound, went for a stroll around Pembroke Lodge in rather misty conditions.

Pembroke Lodge by Sue Lowry

This listed and restored Georgian building offers a public tearoom (delicious!) and wedding venue – no dieting here methinks.

Pembroke Lodge by Sue Lowry

It’s the view – that stunning 360 degree view over the Thames Valley that is the draw however.

Pembroke Lodge by Sue Lowry

It was a former home to the then Prime Minister Lord John Russell but perhaps better known, it was the childhood home of his grandson, Bertrand Russell.

Richmond Park by Sue Lowry

Leaving the tearoom, we walked over to King Henry’s Mound – said to be where King Henry VIII stood on 19th May 1536 to watch a rocket fired from the Tower of London to signal the execution of Anne Boleyn.

Richmond Park by Sue Lowry

That’s probably apocryphal and it’s more likely to be a prehistoric burial chamber from the Bronze Age and possible medieval vantage point.

Richmond Park by Sue Lowry

At its peak, there’s one of London’s “protected views” – offering a distant view of St Paul’s Cathedral to the east and the Thames Valley which is faithfully preserved by generations of landscapers to create a tree-framed sight-line from the mound to the dome. No new building is allowed to impede it.

Richmond Park by Sue Lowry

The next time I visit, with Hound in tow, we’ll go to the Isabella Plantation, a 40-acre woodland garden set within a Victorian woodland plantation planted in the 1830’s, known for its evergreen azaleas.  Sounds gorgeous.

Richmond Park by Sue Lowry

We even caught a glimpse – from the car – of the fabled herd of wild red and fallow deer. 630 of them roam the park and have done so – free and protected – since 1529.

Definitely, a must-visit for a future sunny day.

Contributor & photographer: Sue Lowry

Follow A3Traveller on Twitter: @A3Traveller and Sue Lowry on Google +, YouTube, Linkedin, Flickr and Pinterest. I also operate another blog for my company, Magellan PR – http://www.magellanstraits.com. They can be followed on Twitter: @MagellanPR, on Google+, on YouTube, on Pinterest and on Facebook.

2 comments

  1. Sue Hewson

    Happy memories of the hours I used to walk in Richmond Park in the late 1970’s with my Irish Setter, Casey. Have lived in the US for 35 years, but always get sentimental when I am back in London and drive past the Robin Hood Gate (“my” gate) which now seems to be closed. Sue H.

  2. Sue Hewson

    Brings back many happy memories of the hours that I spent in Richmond Park with my Irish Setter, Casey, in the late 1970’s. Have lived in the US for the past 35 years, but still get sentimental about the park when I am in London, and drive past the Robin Hood Gate, (“my” gate), which is now closed.

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