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Sheep on the banks of The Serpentine

The woolly guests we invite into The Green Park each August for our Green Park Grazing Week are an unusual surprise for our visitors. However, sheep were a common sight in the central Royal Parks as recently as the 1940s. Newspaper articles and photos, provided courtesy of The Hearsum Collection, show how grazing animals were a much-loved feature for children and adults alike.

Our gallery includes:

  • A newspaper photograph of amused patrons of a Kensington Gardens café, looking upon a flock of visiting sheep (1948)
"A flock has arrived at Kensington Gardens for summer grazing and, apparently, an afternoon cup of tea."
  • A newspaper photograph of a large herd of freshly shorn sheep crossing the Serpentine bridge at Hyde Park (1928)
  • Captioned newspaper images of a Scottish Shepherd who every year for a decade brought his sheep down from Aberdeen to graze in Hyde Park (1926)
  • A newspaper article showing sheep resting in St James Park and grazing in Kensington Gardens (1923)
  • An Illustrated London News article reporting that flocks of sheep had been killed in both Hyde Park and Kensington Gardens after a severe thunderstorm (1895)

Visit The Green Park between 17-25 August to find out more about our conservation grazing work. It’s all part of our Mission: Invertebrate project, to improve invertebrate biodiversity in the Royal Parks.

A few minutes of your time can help us to make a huge difference for years to come.