Categories NewsPosted on

London’s Gardens and Squares – Open Next Weekend

Around 200 gardens across 25 London boroughs will be open to the public to explore for two days, 18th – 19th June, during the Open Garden Squares Weekend, a highly anticipated event in London’s cultural calendar, organised by the London Parks and Gardens Trust.

Around 200 gardens across 25 London boroughs will be open to the public to explore for two days, 18th – 19th June, during the Open Garden Squares Weekend, a highly anticipated event in London’s cultural calendar, organised by the London Parks and Gardens Trust.
The Open Garden Squares Weekend allows visitors to enjoy private gardens that are not normally open at weekends, and some that are open, but are hidden gems that you might not know about. Gardens that are normally open provide activities such as poetry, music, sculpture, food and drink, and puppet shows for families with children, or walks, talks and exhibitions by friends’ groups.

©-Canary-Wharf-Group-PLC © Canary Wharf Group PLCBeech-Gardens---Barbican-Estate-©-Diana-Jarvis-
Beech Gardens – Barbican Estate © Diana Jarvis

From historical gardens and traditional private squares to contemporary gardens, over 200 green spaces will be accessible to be explored individually, in a self-guided walk, with a cycle ride, or you can join a guided walk or a special tour. Whichever way you go, you will discover some truly magical places in London.

Barbican-pop-up-garden-©-Helen-Sadler Barbican pop-up garden © Helen SadlerEccleston-Square-SW1-©-Diana-JarvisEccleston Square SW1 © Diana Jarvis

Gardens this year include many of London’s most exclusive private squares, some of the city’s most magnificent rooftop gardens, as well as gardens on barges, indoor flower installations, pop-up orchards and diminutive secret spaces tucked behind the hustle and bustle of London’s busy streets.

Many participating gardens will host their own programme of events, including pond-dipping, talks on aquaponics, bee-keeping, urban farming, Medieval soapball making, botanical art workshops, flower-pressing, seed planting and herb discovery walks. The list is nearly endless, and all activities are free with the purchase of a Weekend ticket.

Bina-Gardens-East-SW7-©-Diana-Jarvis-(1) Bina Gardens East SW7 © Diana JarvisBonnington-Square-SW8-©-Diana-JarvisBonnington Square SW8 © Diana Jarvis

Unfortunately, one of the most visited venues year after year, 10 Downing Street, will not be able to participate this weekend because the European Union referendum is being held in the week following the Open Garden Squares Weekend, but with so many to choose from, visitors will probably be happy to wait for next year to see Number 10’s garden.

The-Golden-Baggers-EC1-©-Helen-SadlerThe Golden Baggers EC1 © Helen Sadler

It can also be an opportunity to find the perfect location if you are after a special place for a wedding or any other event; several of the gardens that take part in Open Garden Squares Weekend are available for hire.

All participating gardens take part voluntarily and, whilst the organisers try to ensure gardens near each other have co-ordinated opening times, this is not always possible. Please do check opening times and days carefully when planning your weekend.
Please visit the website to find all details: www.opensquares.org
Tickets are priced £12 in advance (£14 over the weekend). Children under 12 go free.

Seen this week

Categories DesignPosted on

Sculpture in the City, Art for Everyone

SEEN thoroughly enjoyed a preview of the 18 new artworks around the financial district’s square mile. Set up by The City of London in 2010, this excellent initiative expands its footprint every year, improving the area and proving that when people are happy, they work better.

Categories ArtPosted on

Alex Evans at the Foundry Gallery, Chelsea Quarter: LDF17

The astute reader will have noticed that SEEN loves art about London. There are many artists in this city who draw (pun intended) their inspiration from it, none more so than Alex Evans whose fractal renderings hint at the entropic nature of urban life and perhaps also our anxieties and isolation in the 21st century. His latest exhibition ‘Invisible Systems’ can be seen at the Foundry Gallery, tucked away off the King’s Road until 26th October.