Sunday, 13 February 2011

The Pergola and Hill Garden

The Pergola and Hill Garden, Hampstead Heath
The Pergola and Hill Garden is one of my favourite places in London. It's a beautiful garden with a tranquil, secretive feel to it, hidden away in the western part of Hampstead Heath, between Hampstead and Golders Green. Golders Hill Park is close-by.

The Pergola is a large Edwardian structure built in the early 20th century: A raised terraced and colonnaded walkway, constructed to connect the two gardens belonging to a house then known as The Hill, which were separated by a footpath with public right-of-way.
The Hill Garden, a little park with a formal pond, gently sloping lawns and many benches to sit, is the garden that is farther away from the house; it is, like the Pergola, open to the public. The house, now called Inverforth House, and its adjoining garden are privatly owned.

The Pergola, Hampstead Heath
The Pergola is particularly beautiful in early summer, when the many climbing plants which are overgrowing it--such as jasmine, honeysuckle, rambling roses and wisteria--are in bloom. It also offers a stunning sight in autumn when the colours of all these plants and the trees in the Hill Garden are changing.
At the Hill Garden end of the walkway, there is a summer house from where you have a good view over the trees of West Heath towards Harrow-on-the-Hill.

Approach the Pergola from North End Way; there's a path to left of Inverforth House, follow it down until you come to a gate on the right-hand side. Enter this gate, you're now at the Pergola. Enter it through the wooden door, then go up the spiral staircase. This is the southern end of the Pergola. As you walk along the walkway, you'll see Inverforth House and its private garden to the left and the kitchen garden down to the right.
When you cross the stone bridge spanning over the public footpath, you'll enter the colonnade with the summer house at its end. To the right is the Hill Garden. You can leave the Hill Garden through the gate at its northern end and either go back to North End Way, or follow the path ahead to Golders Hill Park.

The Hill Garden
How to get there:

There's a bus stop called Inverforth House where numbers 210 and 268 are stopping; take either of the two busses from Golders Hill Station, or in the opposite direction, 268 when you are in Hampstead or 210 when you are at Kenwood House.
You can also walk to the Pergola through West Heath, or from Golders Hill Park; there are some signposts leading the way.

The Pergola and Hill Garden usually opens at 8:30 in the morning and close one hour before sunset.

Links to other websites:

Photos of the Pergola and Hill Garden:

These photos were taken last year in May and June, which is is when the garden probably is the most beautiful. I've got many more photos from other times of the year on Flickr.

The Hill Garden
Bench and path in the lower part of the Hill Garden, May 2010

The Hill Garden
Spring flowers in the Hill Garden, May 2010

The Hill Garden
Yellow azalea in the Hill Garden, May 2010

The Hill Garden
Bright orange azalea in the Hill Garden, May 2010

The Hill Garden
The Hill Garden's formal pond with the Pergola in the background, May 2010

The Hill Garden
The Hill Garden seen from the Pergola, May 2010

The Pergola and Hill Garden, Hampstead Heath
Red rose climbing over the Pergola, June 2010

The Pergola and Hill Garden, Hampstead Heath
Honeysuckle climbing over the Pergola, June 2010

The Pergola and Hill Garden, Hampstead Heath
Pink rose with the Pergola in the background, June 2010

See more: My Pergola & Hill Garden set on Flickr

9 comments:

  1. Great photos! Taken on a sunny day no doubt. The Pergola is an amazing place which I discovered only a week ago. Can't wait to go there with a camera now! Unfortunately, I won't catch the blossoming trees of the early Summer.

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  2. Beautiful pictures of one of my favourite places! You are very talented!!

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  3. The Pergola has long been one of my favourite "unknown" locations in London. Being from Fulham, in South-West London, Putney Heath, Wimbledon Common, Putney Common and Barnes Common have always been far more familiar to me than Hampstead Heath, but I do occasionally venture beyond Hammersmith Broadway into the terra incognito of the far north! The West Heath is an exotic indulgence for me, rather like Maryon Park(of "Blow-Up" fame) in Charlton.

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  4. Nice pictures. The Pergola is an easy place to never discover, hidden away as it is behind Inverforth House. Spring is arriving again now, so unless the weather changes, it will be becoming photogenic once again shortly!

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  5. After all these years have finall discovered the location of the "Trees" (On the Shore) album cover.

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  6. Simply my favourite place, Heaven on earth!

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  7. Its my favourite place, been going there since the 90s, Heaven on earth!

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  8. I just wanted to let you know that I have added this blog post to my Art in the Park blog (which is the sketching group of the Islington Art Society) as this is the location for our next outing and your description of it is lovely.

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