The Roof Gardens, Kensington

Sunday 14 June, the second day of the Open Squares Weekend, started very early at The Roof Gardens on Kensington High Street – what a fantastic place!

The former Derry  Toms Building

The former Derry Toms building

The Roof Gardens covers 1.5 acres on the roof of the former Derry and Toms building on Kensington High Street and is now owned by Sir Richard Branson. In 1853 Joseph Toms started the small department store on Kensington High Street which became Derry and Toms in 1862 and which has changed ownership several times over the years. Trevor Bowen, Vice President of Barkers commissioned the gardens from Ralph Hancock and work started in 1936, with the gardens opening in 1938. Today the gardens remain open to the public.

We entered through the Spanish Garden which is modelled on the Alhambra in Granada.

The Spanish Gardens

The Spanish Gardens

The Tudor Gardens are planted with white – roses, arum lilies, paeonies, philadelphus – beautiful and peaceful.

The Tudor Gardens

The Tudor Gardens

The Tudor Gardens

The English Garden has lawns, trees, flamingoes, and a stream!

The English Gardens

The English Gardens

The view from the English Gardens

The view from the English Gardens

You may be interested in
Historic photographs of The Roof Gardens
The Roof Gardens
Interesting blog post on the Gardens & Ralph
Hancock

 

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