16 August 2017

Rebuilding 21 Sudbrook Gardens

Most of 21 Sudbrook Gardens was demolished and now the replacement building is taking shape. The hoardings are substantial but enough of the new house sticks up above them for the scale of it to be seen and it is clearly bigger than the house it replaces.

The lock in the gates serves as a handy peephole and is also large enough to push a pocket camera through. So I did, though the large vehicle to the left still blocked the view of part of the house. Perhaps I will have better luck next time.

15 August 2017

Chinese bridge

I have wanted to show this bridge for several years but every time I had trekked to the far end of Cedar Heights there has been something preventing me, usually the light, and so I was pleased to get this one. It is not perfect by any means but it will do.

Unfortunately the bridge goes nowhere and Cedar Heights is a frustrating no-through-road. Bute Avenue lies just beyond the bridge and it would be lovely to connect those two roads.

14 August 2017

Linden House

Linden House is on Ham Street just north of its junction with Sandy Lane. It can be easily overlooked because it has Beaufort House nearby and The Manor House opposite, which is a shame as it is a delightful building in its own right. That is especially true when the white paint has been redone and the sun is shining.

13 August 2017

Behind Lawrence Road

Many roads in Ham have paths that run behind the houses and I like to explore them even though they often have dead ends that force me to retrace my steps. This path runs behind Lawrence Road on the north side and also goes nowhere, unlike the similar path on the south side, off Langham Gardens, that rejoins Lawrence Road.

12 August 2017

Put out more flags

I have used the heading "Put out more flags" before and I like it so much that I am using it again. It is, of course, a homage to Evelyn Waugh.

These flags are in the middle of Parkleys (the development) where Marlow, Spenser and Brooke Courts meet. This is my favourite part of Parkleys because of the courtyards between the block. The picture above is taken from one of those courtyards looking south. Parkleys (the road) is just past the hedges in the centre of the picture.

This is taken from the middle of the previous picture and is looking back towards where that was taken. Here the row of country flags continues so give us places like Slovakia and Spain.

11 August 2017

Garden at Glencorse in Church Road

The shop of the same name has gone from Ham Parade but Glencorse the house is still there on Church Road and its front garden looked particularly attractive this day. The house is quite nice too though it fails to stand out in a road with several impressive houses.

10 August 2017

Resurfacing Ham Parade and Upper Ham Road

Not a great picture because it was dark and raining but I wanted to log the work for future reference. That is how I know that the stretch of road to the north of this was resurfaced in March 2014 and Dukes Avenue in August the same year.

9 August 2017

Connecting South Corner

I have been following the rebuilding of South Corner on Upper Ham Road since February (six months) and that has been an often frustrating time as on most of my walks past either the gates have been closed or their have been large vehicles parked on the long drive obstructing views of the house. Both of these were cleared, briefly, when the house was connected to the mains running along the road.

The trench and pipes were interesting enough in their own right and it was a bonus to see a roof starting to appear at the side of the house.

8 August 2017

New benches

I was expecting these benches to arrive but it was pure co-incidence that they were being installed as I was walking past. Just beyond the van a man was busy bolting down the second one. They are very welcome.

7 August 2017

Rebuilding The Russell

I have been trying to follow the extensive redevelopment of The Russell School in Petersham for many months but most of the development has been taking place in the middle of the large site and on the north side so can only be glimpsed through the tickets lining the track to Ham Polo.

Evidence of the construction works fills the site and this is the view from the main pedestrian entrance off Petersham Road.

6 August 2017

Remembering David Bowie

As somebody who bought the album Aladdin Sane on the day it came out I heartily approve of this homage to David Bowie.

5 August 2017

Bare ground

A lot of the development of Richmond Chase is still going on behind high boards but the work on the west of the site, facing Latchmere Close, has almost completed. The exteriors of the three blocks of flats are finished and now they are working on the area in front of them.

I hope that something interesting appears because, at the moment, it looks like a terraced street in an urban area thanks to the unimaginative uniformity of the frontages.

4 August 2017

Round window

I do not know how many windows there are in Royal Park Gate, a few thousand I guess, but I do know how many round windows there are. It's one. I am not impressed.

3 August 2017

Peels is no more

The small parade of shops on Ashburnham Road / Ham Street has had a few changes in recent years but Peels has been one of the constants. Until now.

It was a very specialised shop and I never had cause to go there though it was always something that I considered doing as I have plain glass in my front door. Now I will not have that chance.

At least the shop ended on a high. They provided the historical map of Ham that decorates one of the front windows in the new Ham Village Centre.

2 August 2017

Colourful house in Sheridan Road

Sheridan Road is not that well connected geographically and so I only walk along there once or twice a year. This time I was pleasantly surprised by this colourful house.

1 August 2017

Advance Warning

The loop train via Kingston is out of action for a month and Richmond Council have chosen this time to close the road to Richmond in the evening. I am not impressed.

31 July 2017

Lodge Brothers on Ham Parade

I suppose that having another funeral directors in the area is better than having an empty shop but that is a marginal choice. These are not the sort of places that you go to very often so they do little to improve the vitality of the Parade and the (understandably) bland frontage does nothing to brighten the look of the Parade either.

30 July 2017

Removing trees in Dysart Avenue

Due to the vagaries of political boundaries Dysart Avenue finds itself in Kingston upon Thames at the moment so it is the Council there that is responsible for the loss of three trees in Dysart Avenue. In addition to the one in the foreground you can just about see another stump beyond the first two intact trees.

The three trees removed were the largest so they may have been causing some sort of problem. I just hope that they are replaced.

29 July 2017

Richmond Kitchens has arrived

It has taken quite a while to come but now that it is here Richmond Kitchens is making quite an impact visually. Sadly that is proving hard to capture on camera because the glass is so reflective; that's why I took a photo at night.

27 July 2017

A modest extension

This seems to be quite a modest extension to a reasonably large house but it is surprising what difference a couple of metres can make.

This is on Horsely Drive next to the junction with Manston Grove and the owner may have got the idea from the house on the other side of the road (on the left) that did a similar extension a few years ago.

25 July 2017

More a rebuild that a refresh

The conversion of the two properties at the start of Upper Ham Road back into cottages is clearly a massive job. There is nothing left of the ground floor of this section and the boarding across the rest of the ground floor and part of the upper floor suggests that there are substantial works on the rest of the building. It will be interesting to see what the finished result looks like.

23 July 2017

Extensions in Mead Road

From the front, Mead Road looks like all of its neighbours but going behind it reveals a history of extensions and infilling. The design and materials are very different, from the back these look like modern houses.

21 July 2017

New gate in Ham Street

A while ago I posted a picture of the work in progress of the gate into Palm Centre from Ham Street and now that it is finished it looks like a job very well done. The gate itself is firmly built and the black colour helps it to hide while the wall has been neatly rebuilt to accommodate it.

19 July 2017

A new house in Bainbridge Close

The boarding had been there for a while and now a house has started to appear behind it. This is in Bainbridge Close just as it branches off Latchmere Close. It is an unusually shaped plot with several trees in it which may be why it took so long for something to be built there.

From what can be seen so far, it is a far more handsome property than Latchmere Lodge which occupies the part of the site that fronts on to Church Road.

17 July 2017

Remembering Royal Oak

What was Royal Oak is now Ham Village Centre (HVC). It is good to see the building back in use and that the people behind HVC are keen on local history. As part of this the pub sign has been kept and has been given a prominent place in the courtyard garden.

15 July 2017

Weathervane off Lock Road

I hope that this is a new weathervane otherwise I am not sure how I missed it before.

It is on a shed behind a house in Lock Road and can be seen from the lane that leads to the surgery and then the pumping station.

13 July 2017

Something is happening along the towpath

Two areas in the verge between the upper and lower paths by Royal Park Gate have been cleared in preparation for something. It could be benches and it could be flowers. We will see.

11 July 2017

The latest Huf Haus rises

I live close to Ham Farm Road and at the moment I am walking along there often to check on progress on the third Huf Haus in the area. It is now poking boldly over the boarding and already it looks comfortable in its surroundings.

Looking the other way, from Parkleys, it can be seen how the new house has been sited to fit in around the existing trees which will help to preserve the character of the area.

9 July 2017

Converting shops to cottages

The shops at the North-West end of Ham Parade have featured several times in the years that I have been recording changes in the area because the shops there have always struggled due to their being somewhat separated from the other shops and getting far fewer passers-by as a result.

Now the owner of the properties has conceded defeat that the two shops are becoming two cottages, which I presume is an euphemism for small houses.

7 July 2017

A tidy house in Petersham

I presume that the postal address of this house is in Meadow Close but I took the picture from the end of Ashfield Close so it could be there.

Clearly it has been repainted recently and that is what caught my attention. The setting with the trees just made things better. 

5 July 2017

An exuberance of signs

As some of these signs explain, Bainbridge Close (off Latchmere Close/Church Road) is a private road and it is also gated so the for sale signs have to cluster outside making a colourful mess.

3 July 2017

Ham Pumping Station

For some reason the narrow footpath that goes behind the North-West side of Mead Road has been cleared for the first time in my memory and that has opened up new perspectives on Ham Pumping Station.

This is the East end of the site with Redknap House in Cleves Road in the background.

The back of the main building looks as marvellously industrial as it should with its functional brick wall, battered doors and weathered vents. I also love the little sign on the door which reads, "Supply Authority's Metering".

1 July 2017

Fitting in

I have recently made some derogatory comments about one new wall in Petersham Road for not following the style of the street and I thought that I would balance it with one that has.

This wall is clearly brand new so the colour does not yet match the weathered brick of the rest of the street but the semi-circular shapes are exactly right.

29 June 2017

Aftermath of an accident

I have not seen any official statistics but it is my impression, living in the locality, that there have been fewer accidents in Ham Parade in recent years. It is a relatively dangerous area because of the major junction (Ham Cross) at the South end, the chicane and junction with Ham Common at the North end and the pedestrians crossing along the length of the parade so the reduction in accidents is welcome.

So it came of something of a surprise to heard about an accident on the Parade this week the aftermath of which can still be seen in the North-East corner, next to Parkleys.

22 June 2017

Interesting house in Cedar Heights

I have been spending more time tan usual in the Cedar Heights / Ashfield Close enclave recently as I have been watching a new house being built there and while that is depressingly dull it is surrounded by several houses that are interesting, such as number 6.

There are a couple of other houses there that I want to capture for this digital record but they will have to wait until I am lucky enough to catch them without cars parked outside. Nothing spoils the appearance of a house more than a car on the drive.

19 June 2017

Replacing trees at Cassel Hospital

I was concerned when the trees at the front of Cassel Hospital were removed recently so it was very pleasing to see them replaced not long afterwards. They are a little spindly at the moment but they are a good height and, if looked after (particularly during this dry Summer), then they should soon be flourishing.

16 June 2017

Hawkco on Ham Parade

The demise of the Village Supermarket has seen its sign partially removed to reveal some local history. Hawco is one of the many names that this shop has had in the past.

14 June 2017

Preparing the ground

I had to peek through a hole in one of the gates to take this picture and it was worth it. This is the site of what will soon be another Huf Haus, this time in Ham Farm Road and preparations are well underway for the superstructure that is due to arrive later this month.

12 June 2017

Refurbishment in Back Lane

This house in Back Lane was always distinctive because of the high wooden fence that obscured the ground floor. I thought that the fence was going when the house was substantially refurbished recently but it was replaced with an almost identical one and now it looks much the same as it always did only a lot cleaner and fresher.

9 June 2017

A new sign for The Hand and Flower

I was not sure whether the revamped Hand and Flower would retain its name or try something new as it did when it was the Legless Frog and now that question has been answered. A wooden plaque has appeared with a new logo and the old name.

7 June 2017

Vote Labour

Election time floods the area with signs extolling us to vote for a particular party or candidate and in some places, such as along Petersham Road, there is a visible battle for supremacy. That battle interests me little but I do enjoy the defiance and the colour of the few Labour posters that go up.

The one above can be seen in Ham Gate Avenue though the house that it belongs to is in Sudbrook Gardens.

Another prominent sign is in Lock Road where it is positioned to face up busy Craig Road.

5 June 2017

Major changes for The Hand and Flower

Time is very relative in this blog; I took this picture on 3 May, I am writing this post on 6 May and it will appear on 5 June, by which time The Hand and Flower will probably look very different and may well be called something else.

Apparently it is to become a Korean Restaurant and bar and is to be more upmarket. Obviously the Legless Frog tried something similar with little success but they put less effort (and money) into transforming the building which left them trying to convince us that the lean-to conservatory at the back was a cosy French restaurant.

I know little about Korean food but will give it a try, assuming there are some vegetarian options, and I'll certainly give the bar a try too.

3 June 2017

Sight screens on Ham Common

I was somewhat surprised when on one of my regular walks across Ham Common (23 April) I saw some construction work going on on the middle of the Common. I went back later to see what they had done and found this row of holes recovered with grass squares.

From their location is was obvious they they were there to provide support for sight screens. I always make sure not to move behind the bowler's arm but not everybody is aware of that rule.

A couple of weeks later, 6 May, I saw the sight screens in action. Also clearly visible was the new and very white boundary rope which I hope will encourage more people to respect cricket's role on the Common.