Monday, October 6, 2008

West Square and The Imperial War Museum

One of the most civilized urban designs is the square, where houses look onto a common garden or small park.
West Square in south London is an excellent example.

There is enough space for trees, benches and flower beds.

Here a mossy staircase rises towards a blank wall.

If one looks down one discovers basement window-box gardens.

The Imperial War Museum is alternately fascinating and chilling.
The exhibition The Children's War, brought to life the experience of British children between 1939-45. It's not on any more.
Here a suitcase packed with the clothing required for a little boy evacuated out of danger.

Aeroplanes are suspended from the ceiling and seen from the viewpoint of a civilian.

I met Lyn Smith whose book, Young Voices: British Children Remember the Second World War, published by Penguin, makes gripping reading.


  1. Wonderful mossy steps. And believe it or not, I have actually been to the Imperial War Museum!

  2. That would have been interesting. I was 7 when the war ended.
    I guess the door had been bricked up and a window in it'splace.

  3. Hello Elizabeth,

    My eyes are always drawn to that luminescent green of moss on steps and elsewhere. I have often tried to capture it in paintings, but have yet to quite get it.

    Also have yet to get to the Imperial War Museum. Might be that middle word that has put me off, but ... one of these days, one of these trips.


  4. Hi, Elizabeth! Wonderful photos, as always...LOVE those moss-carpeted steps! I like how park squares in London are constructed...little pockets of green and tranquility over the city. That museum sounds very interesting...have not been there! Thanks for sharing...Happy Days :o) ((HUGS))

  5. How I do love wandering the leafy squares of London. Thanks for the lovely reminder.

  6. The green in the first photo is sparkling with its beauty. No autumn colour yet!

  7. That little boy's suitcase is such a reminder of it's owner... I'll bet it would speak volumes if it could...

  8. Thank you for coming to share our miserable weather with us! Your photos are lovely, how I adore the London squares!

    I have been away from blogging and sadly did not realise that you had graced us with your presence... are you here for long?

    Hope all is well in your world; sorry to have missed out on so much!

    Best wishes,
    The Other English Elizabeth :-)

  9. My mother-in-law was evacuated to Wales from London during the war. She often refers to that time.

    I've just come over to you from my place, and it is interesting to see the contrast between city and country gardens. I was in London last week, marvelling at the ongoing beauty of the flower baskets.

  10. The mossy stairs are beautiful! I have a real thing for taking photos of stairs at them moment. I haven't stumbled upon any nice mossy ones like you have! I'm guessing they'd be a little slippery to walk on though

  11. Have you read "Goodnight Mr. Tom"? It was required reading for my daughter this past summer. That little suitcase reminded me of it. I've been to the IWM, but didn't get up to the Children's War exhibit. Too bad.


I look forward to hearing from you!