"Sowing the seeds." London Off The Beaten Path Tip by planxty
London Off The Beaten Path: 1,701 reviews and 3,049 photos
I must admit I had been past this place many times and always thought it was just an old Church. Whilst walking past yesterday, I noticed it was actually a Museum of Garden History, so I went to investigate.
Set in the former St. Mary at Lambeth Church, it is dedicated to all things historical relating to gardening. There is a large association with the Tradescant family, gardeners to Charles I and Charles II. The family tomb is still visible. Another interesting tomb in the former churchyard, now garden, is that of Captain Bligh, of Mutiny on the Bounty fame (or infamy). Note the breadfruit on top of the tomb.
But I digress. the first thing you encounter in the Museum is a very good audio-visual presentation of the Lambeth area. Moving on from that there is an interesting, although not huge, selection of exhibits incluidng many old gardening tools and associated paraphernalia (anybody remember Bill and Ben?).
Leaving the church, the garden is small but well-tended, with the centrepiece being a traditional knot garden, unfortunately undergoing some restorative work at present.
I'm not much of a gardener myself and would suggest this place is really for the enthusiast, although it was a pleasant way to spend an hour.
There is also a very nice cafe, specialising in salads.
The Museum was established in 1977, and was the first Museum of Garden History in the world. It is open every day from 1030 - 1700 and admission is £3 for adults.
othercontact: (0044) 207 401 8869 (fax)
Phone: (0044) 207 401 8865
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