Amazingly, Syon Park is a venue that our group has not been to for a long time. Although it is tricky to get to by tube or bus, it is only a 25 minute drive from Fulham and there is plenty of free parking. The popular garden centre runs the rather grandly-named Garden Kitchen Restaurant which offers a simple café menu with seating inside and out. A perfect spot for us all to meet up on a surprisingly overcast day.
It was easy to ignore the clouds. The beautiful Victorian conservatory, the statuary and the gardens present the plein air artist
with a massive amount of choice. Not only are there all sorts of architectural compositions but the mature plantings around the long and narrow lake offer all sorts of scenic options. Over the years, a great deal of thought has obviously gone into the attractive design of the woodland. The sometime wild arrangement of an impressive variety of trees and shrubs shows a lot of class. An appreciative eye can find many temptations in the contrasting foliage, the myriad shades of green and the reflected light off the water.
But we were only few in number this time. Just a half dozen of us were lucky enough to be there – and we made the most of our opportunity. There was some excellent painting done in the peaceful shade under the huge trees and we skipped lunch, working right through till an early tea time. Over a late cuppa, we showed off our efforts, one member commandeering a well-placed easel that had been set up to display the menu. Sadly we achieved no offers to buy from the cafe clientele!
It was an excellent day in a wonderful oasis of London which we will certainly include in next year’s calendar.