London Secret Gardens - City of London Tour
Take a self-guided tour of some of London's hidden garden gems. The Open Gardens Squares Weekend takes place each year - his year's Open Garden Squares Weekend is on 17-18 June 2017. Next year it is 9-10 June 2018. Explore over 230 private, secret and little-known gardens across 27 London boroughs over one weekend. Gardens range from the historic and traditional to the new and experimental, and include private gardens, roof gardens, community allotments, gardens belonging to historic buildings, institutions, cafés, schools and shops. One ticket gives access to numerous gardens across the weekend. But if you can't make the weekend don't worry - use the site to access fantastic maps covering all of London's boroughs with links to garden information, opening times, videos and blogs.
Christchurch Greyfriars Church Garden (no.28 on the map) King Edward Street, EC1A 7BA is a garden on the site of the Franciscan Church of Greyfriars, first established in 1225. The garden mirrors the floor plan of the original church. The garden has a colour scheme of mainly blue, purple and white, with shots of deep crimson, silver and lime to bring it to life - all contained within low, clipped box hedging - designed to increase biodiversity. The wooden towers within the planting, which replicate the original church towers and host a variety of climbing plants.
On leaving Christchurch Greyfriars Church Garden turn left onto King Edwards Street and continue north 500m to Postman's Park, (no.17 on the map). The entrance is off St Martin's le Grand, Aldersgate Street, King Edward Street, EC1A 4EU. This small park was formed from the churchyards of St Leonard, Foster Lane and St Botolph, Aldersgate, and the graveyard of Christ Church, Newgate Street. The park derived its name from its popularity as a lunchtime garden with workers from the nearby Old Post Office. It was laid out as a public garden in 1880.
The Watts Memorial, is a wall of tablets by the artist G.F. Watts, records the heroic deeds of ordinary men, women and children who lost their lives to save others. It was erected to mark Queen Victoria's Golden Jubilee in 1887.
It's peaceful, shaded and a quiet space if you need a break from the hustle of London and The City. Now return south via Aldersgate St and St Martin's le Grand, Aldersgate Street and turn left onto Gresham St. Continue on till you come to The Guildhall, home to the City of London Corporation. Look out for a pretty triangular pond set off to the side of the road wit borders of tall reeds and water lilies. On the day I visited I went into the Guildhall to ask about public tours and a wonderful doorman invited me there and then to have my very own private personal tour! The week before the The Great Hall had been the venue for the Wimbledon Tennis Tournament's Gala Ball.
Opposite the Guildhall Art Gallery and London's Roman Amphitheatre are really worth spending some time visiting.