20 July 2018

36 Ham Street

There have been a few changes at 36 Ham Street and perhaps the finishing touch is the appearance of the house number on the brick wall next to the new gate. It is lovely.

19 July 2018

Divided woods

It is a little unfortunate that Ham Common Woods is divided by two roads, Ham Gate Avenue and Church Road which split the woods into separate sections each battling with traffic. This is the south-west section with Church Road to the north (left) and Ham Farm Road to the south (right).

It is pretty enough but is something of a beleaguered peninsular with Upper Ham Road forming the third boundary to the west.

18 July 2018

White door

This white door is made all the more striking by the well-worn path leading to it and the vegetation that has been held back to keep the path clear.

17 July 2018

Orange grass

While Ham Pond has turned green, Ham Common around it has turned orange as the heat wave and drought dominate the Summer.

16 July 2018

Green pond

The duck weed has hit Ham Pond with a vengeance. At first only this end of the pond was covered and the birds swam at the far end. Now the pond is covered and the birds are nowhere to be seen.

15 July 2018

Clearing the path

After some years of me complaining that the trimming along the shared path through Royal Park Gate was insufficient, the Council (presumably) came back and hacked it a lot more.

As a result the vegetation is clear of the path and it is possible to walk or cycle past without being molested.

28 May 2018

Preparing another construction site

More local garages are disappearing to be replaced with housing. This time it is in Craig Road where two houses are going to be built. The plans look reasonable but, as always, it will be hard to tell what they really look like and how they fit in with their neighbours until they are completed and that will not be for some months.

27 May 2018

Post Office on Ham Parade

The bus stop on Dukes Avenue by the junction with Northweald Lane still thinks that there is a Post Office on Ham Parade, but it closed several years ago.

12 May 2018

A small FoHL project

Due to several people being away it was necessary to cancel one of the Friends of Ham Lands maintenance sessions but I was up for it and went any way. With just two of us working we selected a modest project and decided to extend another part of the large grass area that we had worked on previously.

The before picture above shows that the scrub had broken up the grass area and brambles were encroaching on the right.

The project was not quite finished, and I want to go back soon to complete the work, but it is already clear that the enclave has been reconnected to the main field and the brambles have been cut right back to make more space for the grass.

11 May 2018

More work on The Old Malt House

A minor project completed at the side of The Old Malt House facing Ham Street recently and now something more substantial seems to be happening, judging by the size and extent of the hoardings and the presence of a skip.

10 May 2018


I was hoping to continue my walk along the towpath beyond Teddington Lock and onto Ham House but I was quickly thwarted by large puddles which I was not dressed for.

Ironically the point of this journey was to see the work that had been done to repair and improve the footpath that had led it to be closed for a while. More work is required I think.

9 May 2018


It has been a good year for Bluebells. I took these pictures around Ham Common Woods but they could have been almost anywhere. The first set were by the side of the road in Ham Farm Road,

The second set were clustered around one of the trees in front of Ormeley Lodge.

8 May 2018

Opening up Richmond Chase

I had made several visits to Richmond Chase where I was frustrated by a barrier limiting my exploration and then, suddenly, it was moved back a long way to open up the next phase of properties for sale. They are on the right while building continues behind the fencing on the left.

The look and feel of the development is now being revealed. The road is constructed, the small front gardens have been planted and the bin stores are in place. The true appearance will be known once the cars arrive. I am not hopeful.

7 May 2018

Clearing scrub by St Andrews Church

Gardeners seem to have been busy across Ham and North Kingston this year and the latest area to get their attention is the patch of Ham Common Woods that lies between Upper Ham Road and St Andrews Church.

Here the graveyard can be seen at the top of the picture and Ham Farm Road is off to the right. In twenty plus years of tramping around Ham I have never seen this area cleared before.

Moving across to the other side of the wide path and turning around to look towards the main road the extent of the clearance is obvious and substantial.

26 April 2018

Foundations at 59 Ham Street

Ham Street continues to draw me to it to see how various projects are progressing. The main one is at number 59, next to the Library, where the foundations of two new houses are now in place.

Progress had been made on completing the ground floor when I returned a few days later, despite the almost constant rain that we had at that time.

24 April 2018

Spring border at Ham House

Every time that I go to Ham House, which is several times a year, there are changes in the garden to look out for. With the onset of Spring (which so far has been just a few days squeezed between Winter and Summer) the long borders in the rear garden are showing off their daffodils.

22 April 2018

Vote Labour

There are elections again this year and that means that the area has started sprouting election posters. The Labour ones may not be the most numerous but they do make the most impact.

In contrast the Lib Dem signs are a jumble sale mix of different posters from different campaigns that have a common diamond shape which manages to confuse some voters who insist in displaying them as squares.

20 April 2018

Update on Richmond Chase

Progress at Richmond Chase seems to be slow but there is progress and on every visit, I go there every couple of weeks or so, there is something new to see, though these days I usually have to peek through the barriers to see it.

This time the progress was at the front and on the right with the large area of brick driveway, some more planting just beyond the barriers and beyond that a line of bin stores which failed to be mentioned in the promotional material.

One my next visit things had changed again with the brick driveway extended a lot further and a new (presumably temporary) fence to separate the houses that are still very much under construction from those that are almost finished. I hope that means that the barrier will be going soon and I will be able to walk down there.

19 April 2018

LS08 TBU parks badly in a bad place

The double yellow lines are there for a reason and the dropped kerb is there for a reason too but LS08 TBU ignores that and chooses to park badly in a bad place.

16 April 2018

Spring tides at Teddington Lock

There was a time, when the children were boys not men, that I checked the tide tables and went along the towpath when high tides were due but those days are now long-gone and I am as surprised as everyone else when I chance upon a particularly high tide.

I noticed this one as soon as I started crossing the footbridge from Teddington as the water was above the level of the weir making it redundant.

The tide was still coming in as I walked around the island and then along the towpath. Here you can see the ledge that boat people stand on when guiding their boats through the lock.

The Barge Lock looks a very full as the extra height widens the water and hides most of the construction. Only the stairs give a clue that there might be something in the water.

15 April 2018

Large slide at Shelley Court

I took a picture of Shelley Court when the scaffolding first arrived simple because I like scaffolding. And then this big slide arrived and I had to take another picture.

14 April 2018

Wet rabbits

As part of the Easter Celebration, some cuddly rabbits and a few teddy bears sat on the wall in front of Ham Library despite the steady rain.

They all got very wet and they look a little tired but they stayed out there anyway and I was very glad to see them.

13 April 2018

Quiet path

I use this short cut through Petersham quite regularly as it is far prettier and quieter than taking the main road that also lacks a pavement on one side as it passes Montrose House. Brick walls are always nice and here you have one on both sides. Then there are nice features like the white door and the vegetation climbing over the wall on the left.

12 April 2018

Rebuilding recommences

The rebuilding of 1 Upper Ham Road stalled for a while. Perhaps that was the plan, perhaps it was the snow, perhaps it was the consequences of the demolition of the listed building without planning permission. Now work has restarted.

The temporary roof now covers all of the site, materials have been delivered and builders can be seen and heard; some are living in the cottage next door.

11 April 2018

Modest project in Cedar Heights

Cedar Heights is relatively active at the moment with a series of building projects ranging from the small to the ridiculous. This is a modest scheme and, so far, seems to be nicely maintaining the character of the house and the area.

10 April 2018

Missing gate at Teddington Lock

One of the reasons that I like to visit Teddington Lock regularly is that there always seems to be something going on there. This time the front gate to the Barge Lock was missing. This is also the bridge to the island so a temporary bridge had to be installed over the gate at the far end.

9 April 2018

Putting lipstick on a pig

At the time of writing, the ugliest house in the area is on the market at £4.75m which is almost twice the price of a 5 bedroom neighbour so it is not surprising that it needs some help is selling. Clearly its appearance from the road is one of its problems so it is understandable that some sort of garden has started to appear.

Anyone who has been to the Palm Centre in Ham Street (it is a great place to visit) will appreciate how much has been spent on the olive tree alone.

8 April 2018

YT67 XRA blocks Northweald Lane

Northweald Lane is deliberately narrow and so parking is strictly limited to just one side of the road in designated sections far away from the junction with Dukes Avenue. The cars in the middle left of the photo show where parking is allowed. The engineer working at the green cabinets by Richmond Road felt that such restrictions were unnecessary and selfishly parked at the entrance to Northweald Lane thus making it awkward for everybody else to get in or out of that side of Royal Park Gate.

6 April 2018

Improving a cycle route

Richmond Council has been consulting on improvements to the Quiet Way from Ham Gate to Teddington Lock and, presumably as part of this, the section of the cycle and pedestrian route between Riverside Drive and Hardwicke Road has been resurfaced.

Now the two parts of the path are both smooth and flat and also there is no ridge between them so bikes can easily make use of the full width when it makes sense for them to do so.

It is only a simple change to a small section of the route but it is definitely an improvement.

5 April 2018

Community Notice Board

The Community Notice Board on Ham Parade arrived a couple of years ago and is proving to be a useful source of local information. I hope that is true of the two posters of mine that are included.

3 April 2018

Black and White

I have admired this house towards the end of Cedar Heights for some time but my attempts to take a picture of it have often been thwarted by parked cars or by bad weather so I was very pleased to find it free of such distractions.

The design is somewhat unusual and I like it.

31 March 2018

The new Russell School

It is hard to see much of the new Russell School because of its position in the large site so it is lucky that it is still Winter and the vegetation does not yet hide the view from Petersham Avenue. From the outside it looks good, I just hope that it works well for the staff and students.

30 March 2018

Daffodils in The Wilderness

An impressive display of daffodils in The Wilderness at Ham House and a curved path to enjoy them from.

29 March 2018

New gate at 36 Ham Street

I have been watching this new wall being built in Ham Street for a few weeks and have been liking what I see. I like the final touch too. Solid wooden gates like that are all the fashion these days, take a look at Gordon House nearby for another example, and it is easy to see why when they can look as good as this.

28 March 2018

New windows

When I saw the scaffolding go up on this house at the tail-end of Ham Farm Road I thought that it might be for a new roof but it was gone too quickly for that and all that seems to have been done is put in new windows. And very nice new windows they are too.

24 March 2018

Skull and Crossbones

I have several walking routes to walk and the prettiest one is all along the towpath where I was surprised to see this Skull and Crossbones high up in a tree.

Zooming out a little and you get a better idea of the scale.

And zooming even further out you can see the location too.