The Garden Guide

York Watergate 'Restoration'

York Watergate was built for York House in the days when river travel was faster than land travel. 'Its surrounds were restored during the construction of Terry Farrell's Embankment Place in 1990' (Hibbert, C. The London Encyclopaedia 2011, p.1037). This is an abuse of the verb ‘to restore’. The ‘surrounds’ are gravel and three tiers of  Farrellesque, PoMo garden flowerbed. Instead, the water should be restored to create a romantic pond, perhaps with small boats in which children can be photographed in watermen’s dress. It is an opportunity for a landscape architecture project to  combine history and heritage with leisure and tourism.  The old Water Gate could become a memorial to the old Thames, before it was embanked by Sir Joseph William Bazalgette's great engineering project.

Sponsorship opportunities: a financial institution which would like to reclaim its reputation after the post-2008 great financial crisis.

 York Watergate Thames Memorial Restoration
Before sponsorship After sponsorship

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Tags: garden history, garden design, landscape architecture, landscape design, public parks, urban design, London squares, public open space, shared space, urban renewal, urban regeneration, urban design ideas, proposals for London, Westminster and the City, flower festival market

John O'Connor's painting of York Watergate shows the Gate in 1872, just before Sir Joseph William Bazalgette's underground railway and trunk sewer separated it from the River Thames.