Last week I introduced you to the delightful Church Street; Stoke Newington’s charismatic epicentre. Today’s post is all about the whimsical Clissold Park, situated at the tail end of the street.
The park is just another piece of perfect that makes Stoke Newington so appealing. It’s absolutely huge and features a Tennis court, paddling pool, endless fields, oh and a gorgeous lake which comes with a few Swans and the odd Terrapin (yup, apparently people released them when they didn’t want them as pets anymore.) It’s the perfect amount of green space which acts as a welcome oasis in the city.
At the entrance to the park is the beautiful Clissold House, a villa built in the 18th century by anti-slavery campaigner and philanthropist Jonathan Hoare. It was later passed down to Augustus Clissold and after his death, it was opened up to the public. It’s now a peaceful café for the residents and is always a hotspot on a Saturday afternoon.
As well as the impressive villa, the lakes and the Tennis courts, Clissold Park is also home to a herd of deer, two (massive) goats, an aviary and a magical butterfly house as part of the animal sanctuary in the centre of the 55 acre space. The goats don’t lack confidence when it comes to coming up the gates, one actually sneezed on me it came so close, but the deer are far more camera shy – preferring to hide away in the shrubs. To find one, you have to pretend you’re on safari and walk around the enclosure on your tip toes. At this point, it’s perfectly acceptable to add a little David Attenborough-esque commentary.
I’ve only lived here for a few weeks but the park is already becoming my favourite place. A little bit of green reminds me of the countryside back home. It’s the perfect spot to go for/attempt a morning run and when you catch a beautiful sunny morning, it’s incredibly satisfying to jog alongside the lake with nothing but the sounds of the birds. Although it doesn’t actually make the run any less exhausting…
Here’s the beautiful park: