Guide To South West London
|| The south west
of London is home to a large selection of exciting cultural
events and venues.
Whatever you’re into you’ll find something
appealing from fireworks and the natural splendour of
the many parks and open spaces around, to the latest world
cinema showcases and exotic restaurants, South West London
offers a selection of truly diverse options for a great
day out or a longer stay.
Avoid the crowds and head to some of the more unusual
places for a unique day out.
The Pump House [map] in Battersea Park was built in 1861 to feed the Victorian
lake cascades from a well beneath the building. By the
end of World War II, the pumping machinery had been stripped
out and the roof had collapsed. English Heritage undertook
essential repairs in 1985 and in 1991 Wandsworth Council
Design Services arranged for the restoration of the external
fabric and internal refurbishment. New floors and a steel
staircase were inserted into the shell of the building.
Since its reopening after an award-winning transformation
in 1992, the Pump House Gallery [map] has
presented a wide variety of exhibitions and events.
Recent years have seen a dramatic increase in profile
with a developing programme of contemporary exhibitions
representing the broad range of current arts practice.
If you want to be at one with nature check out Bushy
Park which is located on the edge of the Longford
River, an artificial waterway that is 13 miles long
and was created by Charles I in 1639 to bring fresh
water to Hampton Court.
Bushy Park offers visitors the opportunity to wander
in more than 445 hectares of historic deer park before stopping for refreshments or chilling out at
a picnic table. Children will enjoy the many talks and
nature trails that they’ll have access to and
adults can relax in a family-orientated and safe environment.
In a similar vain Osterley Park House [map] is a National
Trust property that dates back to 1575 and is set in more
than 140 acres of landscaped gardens and woodland. Famous
18th Century architect Robert Adam is responsible
for the changing face of Osterley when he brought it up
to date with period features from the 1700s and transformed
it into the popular house that it still is today.
Another popular stately home is located at West Hill, which is where you’ll find the De Morgan
Centre [map] for the study of 19th century art and society
in South West London. The centre is a permanent home for
work by William De Morgan, the Victorian ceramic
artist and his wife Evelyn, the painter. It houses an
archive of papers relating to their lives and their circle,
a reserve collection and a temporary exhibition space.
William and Evelyn De Morgan, in addition to their interest
in the fine and decorative arts, were both involved in
the issues which concerned artists and thinkers of the
last quarter of the 19th century and the beginning of
the 20th including women's suffrage, pacifism and spiritualism.
If you want to comment on our choices or recommend somewhere,
why not use our What
You Recommend form to let us know.