Feb 05 2021

Viewpoints from your doorstep: 2. St. Ann’s Hill

Welcome to the ninth in a series of pictorial guides showcasing Warden Mike’s top ten favourite viewpoints, all selected from our ‘Greenspace on your doorstep’ directory.

Number 2: St. Ann’s Hill in Surrey

Photograph of the view from St. Ann's Hill

From the height of 73m above sea-level we gaze across North East Surrey. In the near foreground is a flooded gravel pit where, in 1975, the World Water Ski Championships were held. Click the image for the full size version.

View of Thorpe Park

In 1979, advertised as “An Island Like No Other”, Thorpe Park was opened by Lord Louis Mountbatten.

Old black and white photograph of a Lancaster Bomber

In the far distance is Heathrow Airport. The first airfield established here, in the village of Heath Row in Harmondsworth, was in 1929. It came under military control at the outbreak of WWII in 1939. On 1 January 1946, under civil control as London Airport, the first aeroplane to fly commercially, a converted Lancaster bomber named ‘Starlight’, took off for Buenos Aires with thirteen passengers on board. The airport was renamed Heathrow in 1966.

Photograph of Warden Jamie hugging a huge Wellingtonia tree

St. Ann’s Hill is a ‘tree-hugger’s’ paradise – as demonstrated upon a wellingtonia by former Warden Jamie. Introduced to the British Isles in the mid-19th century, our tallest wellingtonia measures 50m in height.

Photograph od a woman standing on a path that goes right through a huge Wellingtonia tree

On its native Pacific slopes of the Sierra Nevada in California USA, the wellingtonia is commonly known as the “Big Tree”. One specimen, now dead – and revealed by a ring-count to be 3,500 years old – is 27m in girth and 100m in height. Laid on the ground, it would take the fastest man in the world, Usain Bolt, 9.58 seconds to run the distance.

For directions, information and more photographs, go to the St. Ann’s Hill entry in ‘Greenspace on your doorstep’.

Warden Mike
Picture credits: Thorpe Park © Jason Hawkes, Wellingtonia © Franco Folini

<< No. 3 >> No. 1



Subscribe and we'll email you occasional updates to our very best content...