Hidden amidst the overcrowded metropolis that is London is a surprisingly large number of green oases. Not just the obvious ones such as Hyde Park, Green Park and Hampstead Heath but smaller ones such as the beautiful ceanothus-clad Ecclestone Square, the brightly coloured planted pots on the riverboats alongside the canal at Little Venice or the ornate, over decadent waterfall at York House in Twickenham. Garden writer Jill Billington turns her hand admirably to the subject of garden history, tracing back the origins of each of these havens and analysing their continuing appeal. In conjunction with photographer Sandra Lousada, swapping theatre and fashion photography for that of garden, they tour the city from North to South, East to West, uncovering little gems of garden heaven. Sandra's photographs demonstrate a new talent in horticultural photography whilst Jill's readable yet intelligent writing makes the book a fascinating read for the general peruser or more learned gardener. For visitors to London or Londoners themselves, this is an excellent insight into one of the world's greenest cities. - Lucy Watson
About the Author
Jill Billington is an accomplished garden designer and writer. She contributes regularly to the Royal Horticultural Society's journal The Garden
and is the author of a string of successful books. She has also made numerous appearances on television, including BBC TV's Gardens by Design
and BBC Gardeners' World
. She is sought after as a judge for major shows including Chelsea and is a lecturer in garden design on the Degree course at Middlesex University.
Sandra Lousada is famous for her theatre photographs, her photographs of children, and her iconic portraits of such luminaries as Laurence Olivier, Joan Plowright, Vanessa Redgrave, Albert Finney and Julie Christie. Her photographs have illustrated many books, including, most recently, London's Parks and Gardens, by Jill Billington, and Hampstead Heath, by Deborah Wolton and David McDowall (both Frances Lincoln). Her book Public Faces Private Places: Portraits of Artists 1956-2008 will be published in September 2009, and will be accompanied by a major exhibition at the National Theatre.