As last Saturday was so lovely and hot, and as we had no other plans, we decided to walk down to Piccadilly to the Richard Rogers retrospective at the Royal Academy rather than take public transport. We ambled away the day and soaked up the sunshine and the abundant green of this glorious ongoing summer.
We walked over Primrose Hill and stopped for brunch at the Greenberry Café on Regents Park Road. We have been eating here more or less weekly since it opened at the back end of last year and if it wasn’t for the excellent food we would have given up returning owing to the frustratingly shambolic service. I really wish that they would sort it out as the food is really very good.
After brunch we walked down through the wilds of Regents Park and spotted an NGS sign at the entrance to The Holme, a crowned owned residence occupied by a Saudi Royal, on the Inner Circle. The National Garden Scheme is a charity which encourages those with beautiful or interesting gardens to open them up a few times a year to the public and it’s a brilliant way to have a wander around gardens that you just would never otherwise have access to. I think that we are the only people under the age of 60 who enjoy this pursuit and so we made our way into the gardens in the company of a fair few pensioners.
The ground of The Holme are very pretty, and suitably Regents Park-ish. The perfectly striped, bright green lawn sweeps down to the edge of the famous boating lake, which explains why this Eastern side of the lake is annoyingly cordoned off to the boats. The view across the lake is lovely and if you have been wondering where all the bumble bees have gone, you will find them in these gardens, there were hundreds of them. Further up the bank was a delightful shady grotto complete with ferns, a pebbled floor and a waterfall.
It’s hard to believe these expansive gardens sit right in the centre of Regents Park – I had no idea they were there – and whilst I’m uncomfortable with the distribution of wealth that allows a house like this to sit empty for most of the year, and even more uncomfortable that it is owned by the Crown and not the State, I am at least grateful that for two weekends a year us commoners are allowed a good old nose around.