Bushy Park

From Academic Kids

Royal Parks of London
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Bushy Park

Bushy Park is the second-largest of the Royal Parks of London. It is in the south-west of London, in the borough of Richmond upon Thames.

1100 acres (4.5 km²) in area, Bushy Park lies immediately north of Hampton Court Palace and Hampton Court Gardens, a few minutes walk west of Kingston-upon-Thames. It includes fishing and model boating ponds, horse rides, formal plantations of plants and trees, wild areas of bracken inhabited by many deer, and wildlife conservation areas. It is also home to several lodges and cottages, the National Physical Laboratory and the Royal Paddocks.

Bushy Park is an appendage to the palace and honour of Hampton Court; and though far from assimilating to that splendid pile, it is better fitted for rural enjoyment, whilst its contiguity to the metropolis almost gives it the character of rus in urbe. The residence is a handsome structure, and its arrangement is altogether well calculated for the indulgence of royal hospitality. The park, too, is well stocked with deer. The pleasure grounds are tastefully disposed, and their beauty improved by the judicious introduction of temples and other artificial embellishments, among which, a naval temple, containing a piece of the mast of the Victory, before which Nelson fell, and a bust of the noble admiral, has been consecrated to his memory.

The park is a thoroughfare, and the circumstances by which this public claim was established are worthy of record, as a specimen of the justice with which the rights of the community are upheld in this country. The village Hampden, in the present case, was one Timothy Bennet, of whom there is a fine print, which the neighbours, who are fond of a walk in Bushy Park, must regard with veneration. It has under it this inscription:"Timothy Bennet; of Hampton Wick, in Middlesex, shoemaker, aged 75, 1752. This true Briton, (unwilling to leave the world worse than he found it,) by a vigorous application of the laws of his country in the cause of liberty, obtained a free passage through Bushy Park, which had many years been withheld from the public." Regeneration (or the renewal of souls) is, however, a shoemaker's forte.


The area now known as Bushy Park has been settled for the past 4000 years - a Bronze Age barrow has been excavated here, and there is ample evidence of an extensive Medieval field system.

When Henry VIII took over Hampton Court Palace from Thomas Cardinal Wolsey in 1529, the King also took over the three parks that make up modern-day Bushy Park; Hare Warren, Middle Park and Bushy Park. A keen hunter, he established them as deer hunting grounds. His successors, perhaps less bloodthirsty, added a number of picturesque features, including the Longford River, a 19 kilometre canal built on the orders of Charles I of England to provide water to Hampton Court, as well as the Park's various ponds. This period also saw the construction of the Park's main thoroughfare, Chestnut Avenue, which runs between Hampton Court Road in Hampton and Sandy Lane in Teddington. This Avenue and the Diana Fountain it leads to were designed by Sir Christopher Wren.

The Park has long been popular with locals, but also attracts those from further afield. From the mid nineteenth Century until World War II Londoners celebrated Chestnut Sunday here, coming to see the blooming of the trees along Chesnut Avenue (this tradition resumed in 1993). During the late 1800s, the modern game of field hockey was largely invented at Bushy.

During World War I, Bushy Park was home to the King's Canadian Hospital, and between the wars hosted a camp for undernourished children. During World War II, General Dwight D. Eisenhower planned the D-Day landings from Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force (SHAEF) in the Park.

Getting there

The closest National Rail stations are: Hampton Court to the south; Hampton Wick and Kingston, both to the east; Teddington to the north; and Hampton to the west. All are between 10-15 minutes walk away. Transport for London bus routes, including the 111, 216, 265, and 411 services all pass by the Hampton Court Gate, the main southern entrance to the park. The R68 service from Richmond serves other entrances at Hampton Court Green.

It is home to the Royal Paddocks and the National Physical Laboratory, and is close by Hampton Court Gardens.

Bushy Park is also the name of a town in the central highlands of Tasmania, Australia.

External links

The Royal Parks - Bushy Park (http://www.royalparks.gov.uk/parks/bushy_park)no:Bushy Park


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