London Bridge to Hampton Court, by Steamer
The Bridges.–Beyond the dates of their erection and completion, we can add but few particulars to these convenient communications from shore to shore, we therefore present at once the most important facts necessary to be known concerning them,
- London: five stone arches, by Rennie, 1831.
[1*. Tubular Bridge, building for the Cannon Street branch of the South Eastern rail; to be three-spans, of 210, 240, and 210 feet]
- Southwark: three iron arches, by Rennie, 1819; 700 feet long; toll, 1d.
[2*. Tubular bridge, building on five stone piers, for London, Chatham, and Dover line.]
- Blackfriars: nine stone arches, by Mylne (rebuilding); view of St. Paul’s.
[3*. Temple (proposed), a wire bridge, like the Lambeth.]
- Waterloo: Nine stone arches, each 120 feet span on a level, 1,320 feet long; by Dodd and Rennie, 1811 – 17; view of Somerset House, two shot towers Lion Brewery, Westminster Abbey.
- Hungerford: railway and foot; toll, ½d; opened January, 1863, and used for the Charing Cross branch of the South Eastern Railway.
- Westminster: new and an almost level bridge; seven iron arches, by Barry.
[6. Lambeth:* built in one year of wrought iron plates, suspended on wire ropes.]
- Vauxhall: 810 feet long: nine iron arches, 1816; toll, 1d.
- Victoria or Pimlico: railway bridge, on four iron arches.
- Chelsea, or Battersea Park: a beautiful suspension bridge, 1858; toll, ½d.
- Battersea: wood, 786 feet long, 1771; toll, ½d; free on Sunday
- Cremorne: railway bridge, for the West London Line.
- Putney: wood, 805 feet, 1729.
- Hammersmith: suspension, 688 feet long; T, Clarke, 1827.
Chealsea.–Approaching Chelsea, the Botanical Gardens will be seen on the right of the river, adjoining the Hospital, and containing two of the finest Lebanon Cedars in England, presented by Sir Joseph Bankes. The river frontage of Chelsea Hospital is next seen, founded by Charles II., at the instigation of Nell Gwynne. Old Chelsea Church is a prominent object, and forms a picturesque termination to the long grove called Cheyne walk. There are monuments to the memory of Sir Hans Sloane and Sir Thomas More, in the churchyard. Battersea on the opposite side of the river is chiefly noticeable for its market gardens and an old church. Battersea Bridge is a very clumsy wooden structure; but a new suspension bridge has been recently opened at Chelsea, It is a large and elegant iron structure and at the point where it crosses the river the Thames is 735 feet in width. This bridge, whether as regards its constructive properties or its architectural beauty, may safely be classed among the most successful efforts of the kind, that have been produced in modern times. It was designed and carried out by Mr. Page, the government engineer. Battersea Park, at the Surrey end of the bridge, is open to the public. The green slopes of this park, shelving down to the river side, and now being planted with trees will make Chelsea Beach, one of the pleasantest on the Thames.
Putney.–Passing over Putney Bridge, another dangerous old wooden communication, there is a toll of one penny for passengers Putney, the birthplace of Gibbon the historian, and Fulham, the residence of the Bishop of London, will be seen respectively on the left and right banks of the river.
Hammersmith.–For particulars see Hammersmith.
Chiswick.–Old Chiswick Church is a picturesque relic of antiquity. The churchyard contains several interesting monuments to celebrated artists, among which are those to the memory of Hogarth and De Loutherbourg. The Horticultural Society have their gardens here, where the celebrated Floricultural Fates are held; and the Duke of Devonshire’s mansion adjacent is memorable, as having been the place where Fox died in 1806, and Canning in 1827. Mortlake and Barnes present, a pretty appearance on the opposite, side of the river. At Mortlake the famous Dr. Dee lived, and Partridge, another astrologer was buried there.
Kew.–Near Kew Bridge, which replaced an old wooden one in 1789, is Strand-on-the-Green, where Joe Miller, of facetious memory, is reputed to have lived and died. Kew Church was built in 1714, and enlarged by George III., and has some interesting tombs to the memory of three celebrated artists, Gainsborough, Zoffany, and Meyer. Sir Peter Lely had a house close by. There are some picturesque mosques and temples about the grounds, which are open free to the public every day, from 1 till 6; on Sundays, after 2. The mansion of the King of Hanover is on the site of the old palace built here by George III. The palace gardens are open for inspection. See also Kew.
Richmond.–Passing by Sion House, which contains one of the largest greenhouses in the kingdom, the seat of the Duke of Northumberland, and leaving Brentford and Isleworth to the right, we arrive at Richmond Bridge, a handsome edifice of stone, the view from which has always been a source of admiration. Henry VII. altered its name from Shoen, and gave it his own appellation of Richmond when he rebuilt the palace on the green, which had been destroyed by fire in 1498. Richmond Park contains 2,000 acres, and was first enclosed by order of Charles I. It is nearly ten miles in circumference. Richmond Hill, the praises of which have been long sung in book and ballad, commands a magnificent view over the country, and even Windsor Castle may be distinguished in the distant prospect. At the parish church, half ancient and half modern, lie buried James Thomson the poet, who resided here at Rosedale House, Dr. Moore author of several valuable works, and father of Sir John Moore, Viscount Fitzwilliam, Gibson the painter, Edmund Kean, the tragedian, and others. There are some excellent inns and hotels here; the Star and Garter being frequented by all the élite of the country. Steamboats ply twice a day during the summer months; omnibuses, run at certain times of the day, and it is but just to add that they are the fastest and best appointed out of the metropolis, and trains run constantly from the London and Richmond branch of the South Western Railway. See also Richmond.
Twickenham.–(10 miles from Hyde Park Corner, three miles south-west of Brentford, and one mile west of Richmond), is a favourite resort for picnic and pleasure parties. Here was Pope’s villa, now demolished, and Strawberry Hill, at one time the mansion of Horace Walpole, whose valuable collection of curiosities was disposed of by auction in 1848. The Dowager Lady Waldegrave (the daughter of the celebrated singer Braham) has to some extent succeeded in restoring it to its former celebrity, and in re-collecting that scattered valuable collection. The remains of many distinguished persons are buried in the church. Here may be seen a medallion monument to the memory of Pope by Bishop Warburton, as also one to Pope’s favourite nurse, who attended him for 38 years, erected by Pope himself in 1725. A new church built on the green, and some handsome alms-houses belonging to the city of London Carpenter’s Company deserve especial notice. There, are numerous villas and estates belonging to the nobility and gentry scattered over the beautiful surrounding country. The Hampton Court omnibuses pass through Twickenham to and from London several times daily. See also Twickenham.
Hampton Court Palace.–Open free to the public every day in the week except Fridays, from 10 till dusk; on Sundays from two till dusk. This magnificent palace, originally a manor of the Knight’s Hospitallers, was built by Cardinal Wolsey in the early part of the reign of Henry VIII., and was subsequently enlarged and enriched by succeeding monarchs. This building was completed in 1604, from designs by Sir Christopher Wren, and comprises the whole of the state apartments. The Grand Staircase and the Guard Chamber lead to the Picture Galleries, where the Cartoons of Raphael (seven in number) and the unequalled collection of the finest works of the ancient masters furnish an inexhaustible attraction. The curious clock over the gateway of the second court should not escape observation. The greatest curiosity, however, is, perhaps, the famous vine, which, sheltered and nurtured in a hothouse, in a retired corner of the private gardens, measures 110 feet long, and at the distance of 3 feet from the root, is 27 inches in circumference. It bears from 2,000 to 3,000 bunches of the black Hamburg grapes, in the season, The gardener expects a small gratuity for showing it. The principal taverns are the Red Lion, the King’s Arms, and the Toy Hotel, all much frequented for their eels, which are fine, and the cuisine excellent. For further particulars see Hampton Court Palace.
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