I am delighted as Chair of the Friends to welcome you to our website. Bushy Park and Home Park are two wonderful large green oases in the south west corner of London. Feeling wild, they are natural places with ancient histories, fascinating heritage and superb wildlife. Both are Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs) containing rare species. These are places to be enjoyed and conserved. Which is why the Friends exist, campaigning, supporting and protecting the parks, and enhancing visitors’ enjoyment with information, advice and guidance.
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Visit our photo album: The Ponds
The ponds in Bushy Park, like the gates and the deer and the trees are amongst those wonderful features which help define the character of this great Royal Park. The notes below about these parks are from a Friends of Bushy and Home Parks walk given by Dr Margaret Stedman.
Diana (or Arethusa) statue commissioned by Charles I, and located first at Somerset House; then moved to Hampton Court Palace in 1656; and finally to Bushy Park in 1712, on a new pedestal in the basin pond thus completing Christopher Wren’s design for The Great Avenue, now known as Chestnut Avenue. Shrouded in camouflage netting during WW2. Restored in the last phase of the Lottery Heritage-funded Restoration Project, completed on 2009 and awarded grade 1 status.
Created by Joseph Fisher, park superintendent late 1940s to late 60s; named after daughter Triss
Created by Joseph Fisher just before his retirement; known as Fishers Pond
Initially dug in 1536 fed by nearby springs; in 1630s Charles I ordered construction of the Longford River fed from the Colne to augment the supply in the Waterhouse pond - effectively a reservoir to feed fountains in Hampton Court Palace.
Dug early 90s
Were created by Charles Montagu, Earl of Halifax to complement his house, now called Upper Lodge, It consisted of an upper pond fed from the Longford; in turn feeding a second pond over a cascade, outlet then fed back to the Longford. A third pond is in front of Upper Lodge. A fourth pond (now a marshy area), and a fifth, the Canal Plantation. All five are on an axis. The restoration of the Water Gardens was completed in 2009. The Friends of Bushy and Home Parks have, thanks to some generous donations, added further features – metal finials, metal reeds and 2 trompe l’oeil panels inside the arches either side of the cascade.
Fed by a spring. Created by a World War II bomb?
Barton’s Cottage was and is a Grace and Favour residence. It was originally surrounded by farm buildings (hence the origin of the pond), which were demolished in 1851.
Dug in the Commonwealth Period when Oliver Cromwell was occupying Hampton Court Palace, to provide for the new pastime of fishing. Initially fed by springs, and later augmented by take-off from the Longford River. Bushy Park was sold into private ownership in 1654, but was bought back 2 years later on the instigation of Oliver Cromwell.
Created after WW1 to provide employment. Small rowing boats and pedalos for hire before and after WW2. Stopped in 1970s because ‘uneconomic’
With more members our voice is stronger when we campaign to protect the Parks, and with more subscription income we can do more to provide information and education about the Parks, their wildlife and their history.
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The HWA and the Friends of Hampton Wick Library are proud to present an illustrated talk by Roland Wales about the fascinating life of R C Sherriff, Hampton Wick’s celebrated playwright, Hollywood screenwriter and World War One hero.
Over 50 people took part in the Deer Walk in Bushy Park on 3rd September 2016.Full report...
The Information Point next to the Pheasantry Welcome Centre café is where our volunteers help visitors to find out more about the parks and where visitors can purchase souvenirs of your visit to support our work.
Click this panel to visit our Information Point section and also to find out how you can get involved as a volunteer.