Situated on the bank of the Thames, moments from the busy junction where the Fulham and Fulham Palace roads meet and feed into Putney Bridge, stands an oasis of calm that is Fulham Palace. For centuries the palace was the home of the Bishop of London – the earliest records date back to AD 700, when ownership of the land passed to Waldhere, the then Bishop. The surviving buildings now date from the Tudor period (like the West Courtyard, above) to the twentieth century.
If you enter Fulham Palace through Bishop’s Park (the park runs along the Thames from Putney Bridge to the Fulham Football Club grounds), then you will walk past the Gatehouse:
At the moment, this entrance to the grounds is surrounded by beautiful spring flowers:
The daffodils are out in force, too:
Inside the palace lies the main reason for writing this post, namely a wonderful little café, The Drawing Room.
When cold, you can sit inside on an eclectic array of brightly coloured sofas and deep, comfortable armchairs, but when it’s sunny there’s nothing better than taking a drink and a slice of one of their cakes outside to eat on the lawn with a view of All Saints Church in the background:
As well as serving cakes and biscuits, the café also serves a selection of light meals such as soups, quiches, wraps and salads. When we visited a few months ago, we tried their delicious homemade mince pies, and this time we went for the flapjack, gooey with golden syrup and piled high with cranberries and pumpkin seeds:
Other options included a banana and walnut bread, danish pastries with pears or apricots, a blueberry loaf cake, and a lemon cake topped with lemon icing and crushed pistachios.
You can visit Fulham Palace, its museum and gardens, for free. You can even buy flowers and cuttings from the palace’s kitchen garden. We came across this newly-painted cart in the gardens on our way out, which I imagine they’ll fill with flowers or produce in the next few months:
It doesn’t feel quite like spring yet, but the huge walled garden and tree-lined path will look stunning very soon:
When you’re next in this part of London, do stop by Fulham Palace and the café. If you go on a Sunday, there’s also a food market in neighbouring Bishop’s Park from 10am-2pm.
You can find out more about Fulham Palace on the website here: http://www.fulhampalace.org/
Categories: Food & Drink