19 August 2014
I mentioned Northweald Lake in a recent post about the resurfacing of Dukes Avenue and a few days later it rained heavily to show what I mean.
The dark colour of the new road surface masks the water a little but the extended reflection on the bus' rear lights show how far the water stretches.
But there is nothing like a vehicle going through the water to show just how much there is.
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18 August 2014
16 August 2014
Tree Close is one of those little corners of Ham and Petersham that managed to escape my attention for some years. I knew where it was obviously (it is just off the entrance to the German School) but the entrance made clear that it was private and there was nothing obvious to make me ignore the sign.
When the opportunity did come to venture in I was rather disappointed even though the new house at the entrance was attractive enough.
The main body of the close consisted of dark brick bungalows with equally dark roofs. They looked reasonable of themselves but they did not look like Ham and the wide tarmacked access road rather spoilt things.
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9 August 2014
It does not seem that long ago since it was last done but apparently it was time for Dukes Avenue to be resurfaced again. The work was done over two nights to minimise the impact on residents but it still meant that I had to park on Ham Parade overnight.
The resurfacing did nothing to improve the drainage and Northweald Lake was quick to reappear in the next burst of heavy rain.
6 August 2014
The usual approach that Councils have taken to brightening up odd grassy areas has been to plant daffodils. This is reasonable but they are quite short lived and as every Council does this there is a splurge of yellow for a few weeks and then nothing for the rest of this year.
So it was a very pleasant surprise to find the Richmond Council had planted some wild flowers on the triangle of grass on the junction between Dukes Avenue and Craig Road.
The picture at the top is looking north-west towards Craig Road and the one above is looking the other way long Dukes Avenue. The grass is struggling a little in the warm dry Summer but the flowers look magnificent.
And they look even better when you get up-close to them.
5 August 2014
I was not planning on posting any pictures of the swans this year as I have shown them many times before and many other people take photographs of them but I keep walking across Ham Common and that usually means that I go near the Pond and that means that I take some photos there and that means that there are swans in some of them.
The compromise that I have reached with myself is to post just a few photos from this year and to put them all together. The first of these photos was taken in May and the last in August. The cygnets grew a lot in that time.
One of the nice milestones each year is when the swans become confident enough to take their young brood on to the grass. There were still six cygnets in mid-June but there are now five.
In early August the cygnets are almost the same size as their parents, only their colour gives them away.
4 August 2014
It is easy to see why I like walking through Ham Lands when I am greeted with views like this with the bright sunlight displaying the wild flowers and trees at their very best.
The paths that I like to take are like those on the left of the picture, paths that disturb the natural order the least. I see little point in destroying nature with tarmac just to make the remaining nature more accessible.
Another clearing along the way and another chance to pause to enjoy the scenery.
All good things must come to an end and this pleasant walk ended as I emerged on to Riverside Drive where the unwelcome appearance of some cars marked the boundary of Ham Lands.
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28 July 2014
One of my objectives in maintaining this blog is to celebrate the natural areas of Ham that some take for granted because they use them so often and that some do not know about because they do not explore where they live.
Nature is at its most rampant in Ham Lands and that is a place a that like to roam as often s I can. Often that means starting with the green that lies between the river and Burnell Avenue.
From there I walk north-west along the tow-path where Beaufort House is all but hidden by the trees at this time of the year.
Once past Teddington Lock, Ham Lands opens up. There are several large paths that run through it but I generally avoid those, preferring to take paths like this instead.