At the end of the seventeenth century, William III – averse to the dank air of Whitehall Palace – relocated to Kensington Palace and, consequently, a corner of Hyde Park (Kensington Gardens) was sectioned off to make grounds for the residence. Nowadays, Kensington Gardens is only delineated from Hyde Park by the line of the Serpentine and the Long Water.
To the west of the Long Water lies the secluded Serpentine Gallery, which hosts an ever-evolving programme of exhibitions featuring contemporary artists. While right in front of the palace is the Round Pond, where playwright JM Barrie met Jack Llewellyn Davies, the boy who was the inspiration for Peter Pan – a bronze statue of whom was erected there in 1912.
The gigantic green space also pays especial homage to Princess Diana, with a Memorial Playground that’s a favourite for children thanks to its massive wooden pirate ship and accompanying ‘beach’. The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain, a shallow stone ring of trickling water, is also popular for paddling.
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|Venue name:||Kensington Gardens||Contact:|
|Opening hours:||Daily 6am-9.15pm|
|Transport:||Tube: Lancaster Gate/Queensway/High St Kensington|
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