London, UK; June 2007
If a map of the United Kingdom marks a certain area as ‘forest’, it pays to check what is meant by that. There may not actually be any trees. In medieval times, the word ‘forest’ was used to denote deer hunting grounds. The Caledonian forest in Scotland, for example, is mostly heather and tussock, though it once had trees and will do again.
There is a surprising amount of forest – of the genuine wooded variety – around London and a lot of day walks that are accessible via public transport. Of course, being England, it still comes with a liberal dose of history.
One such walk is through the Epping Forest near Walthamstow in north-east London. As well as wooded glades and lily-covered ponds, you might come across places like Queen Elizabeth’s hunting lodge, near Chingford. Queen Elizabeth I, that is. It was actually built for her father Henry VIII in 1543. There’s no proof he ever visited, though legend has it that Queen Elizabeth once rode her white steps up on the steps of the grandstand.
It might be a deer hunting ground, but this particular forest does have trees.
This post is my submission to Photo Friday, a weekly blogging event hosted by Debbie at Delicious Baby. Please click through to see the other submissions. Or click here to see my other photo posts, including pictures of the recent London snow.