St James’s Park, a sunny autumn day

On 21 November last year, 2011, I was walking back from a meeting along Birdcage Walk, which edges St James’s Park in the centre of London.  At one end of the park lies Buckingham Palace, at the other the corridors of power: 10 Downing Street, the Cabinet Office, the Treasury and the Foreign Office. It is said to be the park where spies meet, and we know that recently it was where a minister dumped his unwanted correspondence. It is most definitely a place where tourists love to stroll and office workers come to eat their lunchtime sandwiches and ready meals, away from the confines of their open plan offices, the tyranny of their computers. In the summer they will also come to sunbathe, as they also do in nearby Green Park. Me, I avoid that at lunch time as you get back to the office too relaxed, a bit hot, lethargic.   Need to stay sharp.

But the park is also very beautiful, an absolute jewel in London’s crown.  I never tire of the place – so serene amid the bustle, the lake and its bridge the centre piece, with wonderful views of the buildings in the distance, including the London Eye, which peeks out above the government buildings to one end. The grey geese which live there give the place a certain dignity as well. When I watch them I can’t help but think of the dinosaurs from whom they may have been descended. The pelicans attract the tourists, but I think it is the geese that give the park its avian identity.

Anyway, I was walking back on 21 November, with the sun blazing, a beautiful autumn day.  I looked around and was entranced by the colours, the colours of autumn. Here, right in the middle of our great city. So I took out the iPhone and took a few shots.  Not all of the best resolution, but I hope it gives the impression of the beauty of that day, the autumnal London basking in unseasonal sunshine.

(Double click on any photo and you get full size).

Starting with Birdcage Walk itself, some autumn flowers, a statue and the obligatory squirrel shot.

Take it to the bridge!

Into the sun.

The colours, the colours!

The two ends. Mirror images.

Whomping willow? (I’m not even sure if this is a willow, but it should be).

The Palace.

More extraordinary hues.

And those descendants of the dinosaurs…

I’ve been working in or around Westminster for the past twenty years (frightening!). I’ve been in love with St James’s Park from the very first day. It is an affair which will never end…

About John S

I'm blogging about the things I love: music, sport, culture, London, with some photos to illustrate aspects of our wonderful city. I’ve written a novel called “The Decision”, a futuristic political thriller, and first of a trilogy. I’m also the author of a book on music since the 1970s called “ I Was There - A Musical Journey” and a volume of poetry about youth, “Growin’ Up - Snapshots/ Fragments”. All available on Amazon and Kindle.
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4 Responses to St James’s Park, a sunny autumn day

  1. Osama Rahman says:

    Agree. I do like St. James Park. Best thing about where the office is located. And have a great view of the park, and Buck Palace from my 7th floor office window. Although I guess you have an even better view from your office window.

  2. John S says:

    Actually, I have no view at all of the park right now, just a building site on Bressenden Place. It’s was quite interesting though when they were knocking down the old structure.

  3. Drew Dadds says:

    Love the picture labelled ‘The colours, the colours’. Beautiful browns, oranges and the contrasting darkness of the tree in the foreground. And of course the Palace. I’m glad you didn’t get any other people or cars in the pictures because its timeless and that same view has been enjoyed by London promenaders’ for hundreds of years.

  4. John S says:

    Thanks Drew – nature makes it easy!
    (I think you mean “Into the sun”?)

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