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Holland Park the one with a Castle, a wood and Japanese Garden

Colonade by the Belvedere in Holland Park
Colonade by the Belvedere in Holland Park

There are 8 Royal Parks in London but Holland Park isn’t one. When King Henry the VIII seized various parcels of land for his deers, Holland Park was not on the list.  The largest park in South Kensington at 54, looks more like a Royal park but it isn’t, the non-royal Park with a Castle and a Japanese Kyoto garden

Holland Park the most regal looking non-Royal Park

Thanks to King Henry the VIII London has some of the finest green spaces of a city as complex and interwoven with infrastructure like this one. For it was King Henry the VIII appetite for wanting to set up hunting parks, In London, that the big Royal Parks became the property of the Crown. Holland Park had a slightly different story 

The park is 22.5 hectares / 54 acres and contains gardens that span from the 17th, 18th  and 19th Century gardens and parkland design.

 

 

Cope Castle becomes Holland House

Sir Walter Cope built Cope Castle which was a Jacobean mansion hidden in the woods of Holland Park, this was around 1605-1608. Sir Walter Cope was Chancellor of the Exchequer During the reign of King Charles I. They landscaped The estate with a covering of exotic plants and trees. The estate’s gardener was John Tradescant. The King stayed at Cope Castle once in 1612. 

 

The pillars to support a new imposing gate was built in 1629 and still be seen today, though the original gates have long gone. 

Sir Walter Cope son-in-law Sir Henry Rich, 1st Earl of Holland took over the house where it Cope Castle became Holland House. The 1st Earl of Holland joined parliament but switched sides with the Royalists. Military action during the civil war ended with his capture, arrest, and trail for Treason. Sir Henry Rich would hold that it was on condition of surrender that they spare his life, on the 9th March 1649, that was not to be and they executed him at Westminster Hall.  It is said that the Ghost of the first Earl of Holland Park has been seen walking the area. 

For a time they stationed the Army at Holland House and even Cromwell himself visited a few times. The house then moved to the Earl of Holland’s wife Lady Rich inherited the property.

Holland Park today

William Kent and Charles Hamilton designed the park layout in the early to mid-18th Century.

Despite the park having vast historical heritage, it was only open to the public from 1952.

Part of the old house and brickwork Holland Park
Part of the old house and brickwork Holland Park

A fire from an incendiary bomb damaged Holland House in 1940, the damage and ruins you can still see today.

 

Holland park vista 2
Holland park vista 2

The international elements to the gardens feature a Dutch Garden, decorative flower beds in geometric patterns, terraces and a Japanese garden area.

Holland park vista with arways and patios
Holland park vista with archways and patios

Japanese inspired  Kyoto Garden in Holland Park.

 

Kyoto Garden Holland park water trees, blossoms, fish tranquility
Kyoto Garden Holland park water trees, blossoms, fish tranquillity

By Chamber of Commerce of Kyoto in 1991. This was to be part of the London celebrations of the Japan Festival in 1992.

Garden features kyoto style
Garden features Kyoto style

Individual Blossoms and features of the Japanese Garden

Kerria Japonica 

Japonica Kerria Japanese Garden Holland Park yellow  pompom blossom
Japonica Kerria Japanese Garden yellow pompom blossom
Pink cherry Blossoms Holland Park
Pink cherry blossoms Holland Park
stone pathway to the water fountains of the Japanese Garden Holland park
stone pathway to the water fountains of the Japanese Garden
Japanese inspired waterfall
Japanese inspired waterfall
Curved back benches Japanese Garden
Curved back benches Japanese Garden

Themed sections like Iris garden with a little pool, Azalea Walk was known as Rose walk before which had been started by Lady llchester around 1894. This walk leads to the statue of the 3rd Lord Holland.  In 1876 the 4th Lady Holland planted Lime-Tree Avenue westward from the statue. These mostly had to be replaced in 1987 due to October storms.

Woodland walks in Holland Park

 

Tree trunk seat Holland park
Tree trunk seat in the garden
Walk in the woods part of Holland Parks extensive landscape
Walk in the woods part of Holland Park extensive landscape

Sun Terrace features seating and flower beds on several levels with a birdbath designed for disabled access.

Holland Park vista archways
Holland Park vista archways

Kensington High Street Entrance invites with large decorative 18thC wrought iron gates that were Belgian. Bought by the 3rdLord Holland in 1836

Kensington High street Entrance to Holland Park
Kensington High street Entrance to Holland Park

Ecology service base for the borough. They run events for the public and schools and educational programs.

Adventure playground open summer 2019

Statues in Holland Park

There are many, here are a few to find. 

Lord Holland

 

Lord Holland statue in Holland Park  by Boehm  and watts
Lord Holland statue in Holland Park by Boehm and watts

The sculpture is by G F Watts RA and Sir Joseph Edgar Boehm RA

Henry Richard Vassall Fox 3rd Baron of Holland

In office as Lord Privy Seal  8/10/1806 to 31/3/1807

This was under Prime minister, Lord Grenville and Monarch George III.

Walking Man sculpture by Sean Henry year 2010.

Size 193 x 61 x 71 cm  painted bronze.

The Artist looks at perception and scale real-life experiences, human existence

Horns, cogs sculpture

Annunciation by Andrew Burton 2000

Symbolises passage of time a New Era. The sculpture was part of a collective that celebrated the Millennium. The Artist heads the Department of Fine Art at New Castle upon Tyne University. Having an interest in Indian Culture and artefacts.

Sculpture by Andrew Burton 2000 Annunciation large horns on cogs
Sculpture by Andrew Burton 2000 Annunciation

Armillary sphere

By Oliver Gero c 1986.

Type of Sundial Armillary Sphere Holland park sculpture
Type of Sundial Armillary Sphere Holland park sculpture

Based on the original sphere that became so decayed that it had to be remade. 19th C paintings showed images of the gardens featuring the original Armillary sphere between the two fountains and dividing the gardens. 

Oliver Gero Sundial Sphere in Holland Park
Oliver Gero Sundial Sphere in Holland Park

These spheres are a Sundial, inside the Holland Park structure it depicts the equator circle and the hours of the day are marked. When a shadow from the sun casts a mark by the north pole/ south pole axis rod which is pointing due North is can reveal the time. 

 Armillae is a Latin word for several rings, used in the celestial astronomical analysis, developed by A Green Ptolemy who was an astronomer and philosopher. 

Dutch Garden

 

Flower Bed section of the Dutch Garden Holland Park
Flower Bed section of the Dutch Garden Holland Park
Dutch Garden Holland park set out  in a geometric structure
Dutch Garden Holland park set out in a geometric structure

Lord Holland legally closed the right of way that had passed in front of his house. He agreed to open another public right of way which runs along the eastern perimeter to the right-hand side if you enter from Kensington High street.

Public walk way to the side of Holland Park
Public walkway to the side of Holland Park

The Belvedere restaurant

17th Century Holland house had a ballroom for its mansion guests. It is now the Belvedere restaurant and has beautiful camelia and magnolia outside it. 

The restaurant Belvedere behind the traditional architecture
The restaurant Belvedere behind the traditional architecture

They restored East Wing of Holland House and turned into a Youth Hostel in 1957.

Children’s play area. Also, an adventure playground that will reopen summer 2019. Tennis Courts

Where is Holland Park

 

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