Thursday, 2 August 2012

William Morris Gallery re-opening

So the renovations in Lloyd Park seem to have been dragging on FOR EVER, certainly well past the original April 2012 predicted completion date. Between that and the great British weather we have been experiencing lately, it has somewhat scuppered my plans to spend most of my maternity leave sunbathing and picnicking in the park. But finally in the past week we have seen some progress. The path that runs through the centre of the park is now open, so I no longer have to drag the buggy across the quagmire of Aveling field on my way up to the station. The central island has been turfed over and is accessible by a new bridge, providing easy access all the way from the Brettenham Road entrance through to Forest Road. The new hub building, cafe and playgrounds in the centre are all looking very promising, although there seems like a lot of work still to do.
Ribbon Cutting
Walking up further into the park accross the island, the grounds and ornamental gardens surrounding the gallery building are looking fabulous and should be quite a sight when all the new plants and lawns have settled in. And round at the front of the William Morris gallery, an impressive new driveway has been put in, with ramps sweeping up to the entrance of the building itself, which has been re-opened to the public today! A little crowd had assembled for the ribbon-cutting ceremony before we all rushed eagerly inside.
The new William Morris gallery cafe
Downstairs, as previously, much of the exhibition showcased William Morris' work, with many of the exhibits updated with added child-friendly interactive features. There is also a large room which will house various different exhibitions throughout the year, currently on show is the impressive Walthamstow Tapestry by Grayson Perry. Almost as excitingly (for me!), just behind the contemporary exhibition room is a light and airy new cafe, with a conservatory style glass roof and patio overlooking the grounds. Sadly I didn't have time for a coffee break today as I was rushing off to the Lee Valley white water centre for some Olympic action, but I'm sure I will be back very soon to give a proper cake appraisal!

Part of the Walthamstow tapestry by Grayson Perry
The William Morris Gallery is open from Wednesday to Sunday, 10.00 - 17:00. You can find further details of upcoming exhibitions and events on the website here.

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