The area that is now Regent’s Park once belonged to the monks of Barking Abbey until Henry VIII dissolved the monastery and turned it into a hunting park. In 1835 it became a public park on the instructions of the future King George IV who at the time was the Prince Regent (ruling in place of his mentally ill father George III until his death in 1820 when he became George IV). That’s why the park is The Regent’s Park, but hardly anyone ever calls it that.Continue reading
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St James’s Park is the oldest of London’s royal parks, named for a leper hospital that was on the site in the thirteenth century. Even though it was raining cats and dogs I decided to take a walk through the park and up to Buckingham Palace.
I decided it would be a good idea to take advantage of the excellent weather we’d been having at the end of July and head out into the countryside. I picked Rufford Abbey Country Park because as well as a lake and woodland walks there are also the ruins of an Abbey to explore. Plus, I haven’t actually been there since a school trip when I was in primary school.
During my recent visit to Newstead Abbey I wanted to make sure I saw as much of the gardens as possible, though not all – since they cover more than 300 acres! I decided the best way of accomplishing this was by following the route on the map I had purchased from the Abbey Gift Shop. Although there have been gardens on the site since the times of the priory, the current layout owes much of its design to the later owners, such as the Byrons and the Wildmans.