more stations

CHISWICK PARK (District Line - Ealing Broadway)
LONDON TUBE RAMBLES
Three very different places to visit all within a small area.

1. The Gunnersbury Triangle Nature Reserve

It might look unpromising on the map, but this is one of those odd triangles of land where railways intersect that are excellent places for wildlife in an otherwise urban environment. Here one has been turned into a nature trail.  
The Gunnersbury Triangle Nature Reserve has been gently developed in a most imaginative way. Waymarks lead you round the undulating six acres where hidden in the woods you will find wetland, small meadows, rustic seats and little paths that lead nowhere in particular.  It is hard to realise you are still in London. The occasional Tube train rumbling past might give you a clue, but somehow that adds charm to the whole endeavour.   If you live in the area you might even want to join their regular volunteer work parties. Entrance through the wooden gate in Bollo Lane, just opposite the station.

2. Turnham Green (Grove Park on map)
For a more urban experience, leave the Nature Reserve and walk right towards the bridge into Acton Lane. When you reach a turning to the right, Chiswick Road, glance down it, as there are some pretty cottages. Continue along Acton Lane. Ahead you will glimpse Turnham Green. 
At Chiswick High Road cross at the lights towards the ornate Old Pack Horse, then right at another set for the Green. On the right are the flats where E.M. Forster lived, but you should walk parallel to the Green, past the Christ Church (1843),  to Heathfield Terrace. Along the way you will see the Crown & Anchor on the corner of Belmont Road  which has a splendid tiled sign for Young's Ram Brewery. (Opposite the pub is an attractive large green and white building - a 1980’s design by John Taylor which cleverly echoes the roof line of Voysey House, which you will come to later.) Cross over Heathfield Terrace and walk a few paces to an alley where you may detect the scent of beer brewing. The Lamb Brewery, once the Barley Mow pub, has now installed a micro brewery. It has taken the name of the Lamb Brewery (closed in 1922) which was situated by the river near Chiswick Eyot.  The pub itself is known to have been operating in the eighteenth century. 
Once in Barley Mow Passage look to the left where there are two contrasting buildings - both once used by Sandersons wallpaper manufacturers.The tall red brick  building to the right is dated 1893, while opposite is the 1903 iconic extension by the Arts and Crafts designer, C.F.A.Voysey. (A bridge once joined the two.) It is Voysey's only factory building, being constructed in white glazed brick with graceful curving roof line. It is now home to a variety of organizations, including the Voysey Society. Turn around and walk past the old pub (or not) towards the Green and Heathfield Terrace. If the Civil War is your thing, at the end of the passage turn right, where you will find a small information area (not the first one) near the alley on Turnham Green Terrace with a board containing details of the important Battle of Turnham Green in 1642.


You should now turn your attention to Heathfield Terrace. No 2 is a Georgian cottage near what used to be the Army & Navy furniture repository (now flats).   Pass Heathfield Court to get to a nineteenth century terrace with large arched windows.  Soon comes the Town Hall - an impressive building of 1876. Cross Sutton Court Road for an early Victorian stucco terrace, the first house of which has been painted a surprising green. 

The two little dormer windows on adjoining dwellings nearby look as if they belong to a dolls' house. All these buildings have front gardens with iron railings, No. 23 having a little knot garden. 
At the West end of Heathfield Terrace is an Arts and Crafts style Church Hall (1913). Walk over the road towards the Green via a zebra crossing , follow the path ahead and then go left at  the gap in the iron railings. Cross at the traffic island towards Arlington Gardens.  Behind Arlington Park House on the right hand side look for the tucked-away rural survival, Arlington Cottages. This was originally a farmhouse and the open front garden is still delightfully informal. (Please respect the privacy of the family living there.) Proceed to the end of the road, turn right into Marlborough Road, then left at Chiswick High Road to discover something entirely different - the Richard Rogers business park.

3.Chiswick Business Park.

Richard Rogers designed the award-winning Chiswick Park business centre off Chiswick High Road, previously the site of the Gunnersbury bus depot. It is well worth a visit.
The
 buildings are apparently very simple in design, but closer inspection shows that a great deal of thought has been given to the problems of working in glass-dominated buildings. There is a clever arrangement of projecting louvres plus exterior yellow sun blinds. These are activated by light sensors.Gardens surround these airy units and include a lake and waterfall where I saw a heron and water wagtail looking quite at home.

As Gunnersbury Tube station is opposite you could return home from there. Or you could walk towards the river and Kew Bridge following the route on my entry for Gunnersbury

Photos: (click on images to enlarge)
Mural at Gunnersbury Triangle Nature Reserve
Path at Nature Reserve/Cottages in Chiswick Road
Church on the Green
Lamb pub sign
Voysey House
Chiswick Town Hall
Dormer windows in Heathfield Terrace
Chiswick Business Park
Sun blinds in Business Park.

*You might wonder why I have not made Chiswick House the destination for Chiswick Park Tube station, but it is only fair to point out that it is actually much nearer Chiswi
ck railway station.
I have included it in the Stamford Brook entry as part of a longish trail.
MAP

www.londontuberambles.co.uk
This is just one walk from the many to be found at London Tube Rambles. There are architectural gems, beautiful country views, historic places and quirky buildings to be found in the area covered by the outer London Underground stations. Usually the discoveries are within a mile of the Tube - often only five minutes walk away. If you reached this as an individual page via a search engine, you might like to click on the link above and see the other destinations explored. You'll be amazed at what's out there!


© DR