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Brief description of site

Kensington Gardens is situated in west London immediately to the west of Hyde Park. Features include the Serpentine Gallery, extensive Italian gardens, a well-known bronze of Peter Pan and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Playground.

Brief history of site

Kensington Gardens is the former gardens and park of Kensington Palace, established when William III purchased Nottingham House in 1689, incorporating land from Hyde Park. The westernmost strip is in Kensington & Chelsea and contains Kensington Palace and its gardens. Remnants of the early-18th century landscaping designed by Bridgeman and Switzer and subsequently by Kent, include the Broad Walk, Round Pond, Long Water and Serpentine. Some of the built structures remain including the Palace and Orangery. In the later-18th century and early-19th century the formal layout was progressively softened, leaving largely open areas crossed by paths between entrances and features, and numerous mature trees. The Italian Garden dates from 1860s; the Albert Memorial was built in 1863-72. Among formal gardens around the Palace is the sunken Dutch Garden of 1908-9. The Princess Diana Memorial Playground opened in 2000.

Location information:

Address: Kensington Gardens Office, The Magazine Storeyard, Magazine Gate, Kensington Gardens, London, W2 2UH

Locality: Kensington and Chelsea

Local Authorities:

Greater London; Westminster

Historical County: Middlesex

OS Landranger Map Sheet Number: 176 Grid Ref: TQ263801
Latitude: 51.5057 Longitude: -0.181598

Directions:

Tube: Bayswater (Circle & District); Queensway and Lancaster Gate (Central), High Street Kensington (District, Circle). Bus: 70, 94, 148; 9. 10, 49, 52, 70, 452

Visitor facilities

Opening contact details:

The park is open daily, from 6am - 15 mins after dusk. Palace - Summer: 1st March - end Oct: daily 10am-5pm. Winter:1st Nov to end Feb: daily 10am-4pm.

Visitor information:

Children's playgrounds. WCs. Refreshments.

Key information:

Form of site: royal park

Purpose of site: public park

Context or principal building: palace

Site first created: 1689

Main period of development: Early 18th century

Survival: Extant

Site Size (Hectares): 112

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