Today I went to Victoria Park in Tower Hamlets. I’ve driven past it loads of times and always thought it looked quite nice, especially with that boating lake.
So I braved Olympic traffic and headed Hackney-ward. I wasn’t disappointed. I became disproportionately excited about the pedalos so a happy half hour was spent pootling around the lake taking pictures and watching ducks attack each other.
The park is lovely and well-kept and the Pavilion Cafe does a mean burger and locally-produced lager. I’ve been told that there used to be a mini paddle steamer which went round the lake. These days you can get a pedalo or a rowing boat. It’s all really rather good-natured and relaxed with people in both types of boat exhibiting varying levels of hopeless incompetence — the air rings with very British exclamations of ‘sorry!’ and self-deprecating laughter when there’s a collision.
The sculpture in the picture here is called Bird and is made of hay. Along with its sister sculpture, Skyscraper, it was created by artist Ernő Bartha for the London Olympics. I think they’re rather fabulous.