29 January 2015

Tufnell and Dartmouth and Waterlow Parks

Out for a afternoon stroll recently, I found myself at the Tufnell Park Station junction. Crossing into Dartmouth Park Hill to take a snap of the Boston Arms looking wonderful against the crisp blue winter sky, I realised I had never walked the full length of that road, so up the hill I ventured...


Dartmouth Park Hill is actually two hills; heading northwards from The Boston, there is one ascent, then a flat bit, then up it goes again all the way to where it meets Highgate Hill opposite Hornsey Road. 
Just past Dartmouth Park Road, on the flat bit, is an old in-wall Royal Mail letter box. I stopped to take a crappy out of focus picture and wondered if the rather impressive chunky post that surrounds it was built especially to hold the red metal or was part of a pair of gateposts, as per the two larger ones near the junction of Lady Margaret Road on nearby Tufnell Park Road. I wonder if it/they could be part of the Earl of Dartmouth's original estate buildings?
I then crossed the road to look at what can be seen of the covered reservoir. There's not much visible from street level just a metal ventilation pipe, some nice sloping grass and a non-slip surface. The two tanks cover rather a large area though despite what this map shows only a small piece of land around the edges is actually parkland.


Opposite the reservoir is a house that looks like a hangover from the 1970s – the bright yellow walls and purple front door look more completely out of place. I am sure it wasn't this colour a few years ago – I may be wrong, but, being so bright I am sure I would have noticed it before.  
Looking down Chester Road I stopped to to admire the spire of St Michael's, Highgate Village, hovering like a beacon above the trees and houses.
I continued up the second hill section, past the old original buildings at the rear of Whittington Hospital and then entered Waterloo Park. 
A gorgeous little dog amused me and others as she ran up trees. She didn't appear to be chasing squirrels, just having fun. She'd get perhaps 3 metres up, turn, jump down and then run up the next one. Lovely.
I then exited the park into Swain's Lane opposite the Highgate Cemetery entrance and was half way up the hill before I realised that I still haven't walked the full length of Dartmouth Park Hill.

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