Perth Parks - Queens Gardens
Queens Gardens is easily located near the WACA (West Australian Cricket Association), in Hay Street Perth, bordered by Plain St, Nelson Crescent and Hale Street. Easily walked to from the city centre, or via the free central city CAT bus service. Paid meter parking surrounds the park.
Named after Queen Victoria when it was opened in 1899, the Garden are just over 3 hectare (8 acres). The site was originally used for horse racing and then from 1860-1890 it was a clay and brickworks. The old clay pits have now been transformed into gorgeous lily filled ponds, with nothing to show of their former usages.
It is a beautiful green oasis in the city and a photographer’s delight. Many Perth wedding photos are taken in the Garden. I visited the park on a quiet weekday and saw more people with snapping cameras than there were visitors sitting on the lush lawns.
A delight of the park is a statue of Peter Pan, a replica of the Peter Pan statue in Kensington Gardens, and one of only four reproductions ever made. It has been autographed by the author of Peter Pan, J.M.Barrie.
“Never let truth get in the way of a good story” applies to one of the park benches here. There is a tale that it was a bench used in the 1999 film Notting Hill, purchased by an anonymous gent - to sit upon and propose to his love. When she spurned his request, he donated the bench to the gardens. There was even a plaque to this story on the bench, which has now been removed. It is not certain that the bench came from the movie at all.
There is a carving on the bench - "For June who loved this garden, from Joseph who always sat beside her". And etched along the top of the bench "Rodd & Nicole 2002". Was the rejected suitor the mysterious Rodd?
With much of its original layout still in place, Queens Gardens is a lovely park to visit or stay awhile, enjoying the day and imagining all the different people who have also enjoyed these Gardens in the last 120 years.
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