Wednesday, 3 December 2008
Dulwich trees in December
We have so many big, old trees around where I live. Native species that used to fringe and hedge the large farms that covered this area until in the mid nineteenth century it became more lucrative to sell off the land to the builders throwing up the sprawling red-brick Victorian suburbs. And lush plantings of both native trees and exotica in the two large public parks that are also our legacy from Victorian planners. Thanks to those municipal park designers and to Dulwich College, which has vast land holdings and has kept of lot of them green (though in other ways they are a less benign landlord, keeping out useful, ordinary shops and services by their extortionate rents), the trees shelter us on all sides from city filth and ugliness, a blessed counterweight (though, squinting up, up, up through the viewfinder, one of these days I'm going to overbalance).