28 July 2007
This picture is taken from the new footbridge from the toll path to Ham House. On the left is the foundation of the previous path and in the middle is a new sluice gate on the pipe to the river. Previously this was an open pipe and so the water ebbed and flowed through it as the tide when in and out.
The new footbridge on the path to Ham House from the river is now complete and what a feat of over-engineering it is! It's bright, large and completely out of character for the area. This part of the path goes into a field that has horses in it and I don't recall anybody, other than me, using this path; so why does there need to be so much intrusive construction?
This alley runs from Melancholy Walk to Ham Street. The wall on the right is part of the long wall that surrounds the Ham House complex.
The dark spot in the distance is where the alley suddenly zigzags which creates a blind section in both directions. This may be why it is called Cut Throat Alley though I am not aware of any dangerous incidents there in recent times and I use the alley regularly.
There is a low area between Ham House and the river that fills with water at high tide, hence the different vegetation and the almost permanent stretch of mud in the grass. It looks as though this flow of water may have been blocked as part of building the footbridge (I'll try and find out) in which case that character of this area will change.
22 July 2007
There are now only four pubs in Ham; The New Inn, Legless Frog, Brewery Tap and the Royal Oak. Two of these are more concerned with food than beer and one is empty, which leaves the Royal Oak as the only decent pub. And a good pub it is too.
More photos like this pubs/restaurants
16 July 2007
Until a few years ago this was the playground at Dysart School but the school has moved to Tolworth and the building now houses the Dukes Centre. Kingston Council own the land as the borough boundary takes a detour to include the former school in Kingston when it would make more sense to include it in Richmond.
Mornington Walk is a no-through-road off Craig Road with a footpath through to Ham Common. The houses here are more modern than most in the area so they look very different.
This sign has recently appeared at The Denes in Craig Road advertising the affordable housing that is included in the development. Shame about the spurious word "no" in the phrase "16 no new 1 & 2 bed apartments".
15 July 2007
They play cricket on Ham Common most Saturdays over the Summer but this week was a bit special as it was a charity match featuring Shane Warne. Here he is going out to bat. He scored about thirty runs in two overs before skying a catch off the bowling of a young lad.
OK, so it's not the worst case of bad parking but I did find it rather amazing that he managed to park so far from the pavement despite, as you can see, having clear bays in front and behind. And by parking over the boundary with the road, he has made it more difficult for the car that is trying to park in front of him.
13 July 2007
10 July 2007
New Road has an eclectic mix of cottages, including these Victorian houses. New Road is narrow, one-way, and leads on to Ham Common by the pond so the location is pretty good but there is little parking and most of the houses are attractive but small.
I'm not sure if Ham Institute is still going but it was a fairly typical working man's club with snooker tables, darts and cheap beer. I never went there myself but have spoken to several people who have.
I do not know the history of the building but there are clear signs above the front door that changes have been made over the years.
The rather attractive Boxall Cottages overlook Ham Common from the north-west side.
The cottages are some way back from the main part of the Common, behind both the main road and the slip road, and are a little lower than the Common too so I suspect that the view from the cottages do not quite live up to the location. There is no problem with the views of the cottages though.
7 July 2007
The new bridge that completes the path past Ham House to the river has been under construction for some months now but it is finally taking shape and may be finished soon. It is far more substantial, wider and taller than the previous bridge which fits in well with the Council's apparent policy of making the natural areas look as unnatural as possible.
This picture of the back of Ham House was taken from just inside the gate that leads to Melancholy Walk. Here you can see that the path that started with an avenue of trees across Ham Common leads through the garden of Ham House to the rear door.
Melancholy Walk (no idea why it is called that) goes from Sandy Lane toward Ham House, following straight on from the bridle path from Ham Common. Here you can see that the Richmond Council eco-vandals have been at the verges.
The bridal path from Ham Common (on the north-west side) leads past Grey Court school directly toward Ham House. When in full leaf it looks like a country lane. At the moment the verges look nice and wild but Richmond Council has a nasty tendency to cut them right back.