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Meanwhile Gardens — a hidden gem in London

Meanwhile Gardens is a special little community oasis and I love it because it is welcoming, laid-back, and also very understated, without a fancy website, or a lot of rules or formality. And it is so very sweet!

Meanwhile Gardens is a community garden, powered by incredible volunteers, who we always end up chatting with and then we help them water flowers and plants. Usually we are rewarded with a taste of one of the seasonal delights in the greenhouse — sugar snap peas, strawberries, or tomatoes! But the real fun is being a little part of a such a special and lovely place.

The gardens were established in 1976, and have unique features unlike most London gardens! The best known feature is the skateboard ‘pit’, which is first of its kind in London and quickly became famous. There is also an excellent Wildlife Garden run by Kensington & Chelsea MIND, (the mental health charity) which trains people with mental health issues as part of their recovery.

There are meandering paths that make you feel as if you have escaped the city! Bug hotels, beautiful pockets of wildflowers, and of course — the ever-so-popular place in our family — the ponds! Oh the joy of searching for treasures (mainly moss and lichen) with sticks in the pond.

Designed to bring some green to concrete-clad north Kensington in the Seventies, the gardens were only meant to be a temporary space – hence the name ‘Meanwhile’. It’s not hard to see why the council decided to keep it.

There are such smart uses of space, and such fun areas to explore, including the Playhut, which you need to pay a nominal fee for a years membership, but can enjoy with children under 6 for playing.

There are numerous points of access to Meanwhile, but we love strolling along the canal, and entering next to the tower. Then we are closest to the Greenhouse, and can start our visit by watering the plants! And depending on the season, there have even been steel drum bands practicing for the famous Notting Hill Summer Carnival, which adds to the fun and energy of the space!

And be sure to also visit the Moroccan Garden too! As you can see, there are so many fun things to do! Take a picnic, and let the day reveal it’s self to you! And if you do see a volunteer or two, be sure to thank them for keeping this special garden alive.

Lara  x

Meanwhile Gardens :
156 – 158 Kensal Road
London
W10 5BN
Visit @meanwhilegardens on Instagram for special events, or just visit and see what interesting things you find that day! And please remember they are a charity, so anything you can donate or do to help will be giving back in a great way!

ps Other great places to visit nearby. And one of our other favourite tucked-away gardens, Mapesbury Dell.


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