A Year in the Life of Richmond - Joanna Jackson
Review by Lizzie Guilfoyle
JUST AS she did with Richmond Park, so Joanna Jackson has done with the town of Richmond itself. The result, A Year in the Life of Richmond, is a book that is as informative and visually stunning as its predecessor.
The year begins in winter with images of skeletal trees on Richmond Green, a snowman guarding Queen’s Ride in Richmond Park, and the view from Richmond Hill partially shrouded in fog. And if you’ve ever climbed to the top of Richmond Hill, you’ll know that this is one of the lovliest views in London.
Not surprisingly and as the title suggests, it continues through to autumn with beautiful images of gulls lined up on posts in Terrace Gardens, the tunnel of hawthorn leading to Petersham Meadow, and the ha-ha between the towpath and Old Deer Park buried beneath a carpet of leaves.
Nor does it forget the Rugby Club which was formed as long ago as 1861, or the Poppy Factory that moved to Richmond in 1926 and today, produces all the world’s remembrance poppies.
And then there are the two theatres – the small and intimate Richmond Theatre that has become a testing ground for plays with a West End transfer in prospect, and the Orange Tree that began life in the upper room of the Orange Tree pub.
A Year in the Life of Richmond is a well written and beautifully presented book. And Jackson is obviously proud of the town she’s called home for the past 20 years – justifiably so.
Just 15 minutes by train from Waterloo, Richmond is indeed, one of London’s most charming districts. Fortunately, and to Jackson’s immense credit, her book does it the credit it so rightly deserves.
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