29 June 2013

M 3 OSM gets it all wrong

My exposes of bad parking in Ham only show the very worst examples that I come across and M 3 OSM's behaviour on Ham Parade this morning was certainly that.

These are the double yellow lines outside of Wendy's Workshop but parking on them is not of itself bad enough to warrant an appearance here as, sadly, so many people abuse those restrictions. What makes M 3 OSM's crimes noteworthy are the angle at which it is parked (making it hard for other cars to turn in to Parkley's Parade) and the almost illegibility of the number plate.

26 June 2013

Ham Fair 2013

Ham Fair is the main local community event of the year and I always make the effort to go, even when the weather is not as kind as it was this year.

The heart of the fair is the many stalls run by local organisations, of which there are many. I spoke to several of them to get the local news and was particularly interested in the update on the proposed hydro-electric generator that would sit alongside the weir at Teddington.

There were lots of fun and retail stalls too and, as always, the most garish of these were the collection of bouncy castles in one corner of the Fair.

My highlight of the show this year was the collection of vintage Trojan cars. These were manufactured, by Leyland, in Kingston upon Thames for a while and so have a strong local connection.

20 June 2013

Sky NEWS gets a makeover

I was looking for an old picture of Sky NEWS on Ham Parade to show how it has changed and was slightly shocked to find that I had not taken one before. On reflection I can understand why. I have taken panorama shots of the other sections of Ham Parade a few times over the years, starting in 2007, but not of the north-east quadrant as that view is usually obstructed by two ranks of parked cars. I'll have to work on that.

In the meantime you will just have to trust me when I say that this is a new fresher look for Sky NEWS. I like it and I also like the colour as there is rather too much blue on the parade at the moment.

13 June 2013

Fortune House on New Road

Fortune House was one of the gardens new to Ham Open Gardens and that alone was enough for me to want to see it. The garden hugs the house that occupies a not very large plot on the corner of New Road and Craig Road.

The garden is cleverly and prettily divided in to sections and no space is left unused or unloved. Above all it is the attention to detail that wins though and makes this garden so lovely.

11 June 2013

The Gatehouse on Ham Common

The Gatehouse sits on the left side of Great South Avenue as it leaves Ham Common and heads for Ham House. The very public and pretty front garden is kept in the style of the period of the house while the private and also pretty rear garden is designed for family use.

Family use means things like a lawn to play on but the garden does much more than that and there are lots of things to delight the eye from the neatly arranged flower pots on the steps to the upper lawn and a couple of discrete statues.

9 June 2013

Stafford Cottages on Ham Common

The front garden at Stafford Cottages is easily and often admired by people walking along the North side of Ham Common and I usually take a little detour when passing through the area just to get another look at it.

7 June 2013

Gate House Garden on Ham Common

Strictly speaking the garden maintained by the Ham Amenities Group on the corner of Ham Common and Upper Ham Road is always open and Ham Open Gardens 2013 was just another opportunity to draw attention to it. It was looking very good that day and easily outshone some of the gardens much larger than it.

6 June 2013

Forbes House on Ham Common

I suspect that this is the garden that most people were most interested in seeing in Ham Open Gardens 2013 so it is a shame that photography was politely banned and that a few burly men with earpieces were there to see the rules enforced. I was asked to stop taking photos after taking this one but I was not asked to delete it (that has happened to me in theatres) so I argue that it is reasonable to share it.

The garden was ordered geometrically with  lawns, borders, paths and ponds dividing the garden up in to sections each with its own purpose and beauty.

5 June 2013

Walled garden at 19 Sudbrook Gardens

If I had read the guide to Ham Open Gardens 2013 carefully then I would have known that the garden entrance to 19 Sudbrook Gardens is in Ham Gate Avenue and not wasted a walk in to Sudbrook Gardens.

I have a justifiable softness for walled gardens and this one helps to show why. Brick walls are the perfect backdrop to borders. They also protect from the wind and hold on to the heat from the sun which allows delicate plants that would fail elsewhere to flourish.

Pretty though the flowers were, my favourite part of the garden was the small door out to Ham Gate Avenue.

2 June 2013

The Cassel Hospital on Ham Common

Cassel Hospital seems to be empty now so this may have been the last chance to enjoy the large grounds before they are built on. The disuse of the building was echoed by the garden that had been hastily and inelegantly mown for the open day rather than carefully for residents.