Welcome to the first location in this series:

Chippenham, Wiltshire. A small market town which sits on the river Avon, to the southwest of Swindon. After moving to the south west from the home counties, Chippenham very soon became my favourite town in the region, partly, I guess, because I worked in and around Chippenham for three years and kind of bonded with it. The advantage of it being a smaller town is that almost all of it is within walking distance of the town centre.

Around 10 minutes walk from the town is John Coles park which has been a part of Chippenham since it was opened in 1923. A superbly maintained oasis within easy reach of the town. In part formal garden park, at least as formal as it gets, and a great recrational area for all the family. For a small town the parks and gardens department are kept busy. There is another large park in Chippenham which is within the town, alongside the river, however, this is more recreational than formal. As it was a cold day and had clouded over by the time I got back there I decided not to include it in this article, maybe another day in the summer. Back to the park featured here. Many town gardens feature ornate or dramatic entrance gates and this is no exception, with two entrances similar to this and the pathway within forming a D shape.

 

Once inside the park the main path is bordered by grass verges with these raised beds of flowers leading up to a fork in the path with a large raised feature bed which was unoccopied at the time of my visit. I have included a picture taken last year when it was in full bloom.

                      

More of those raised beds, this time with an almost tropical feel to them. You could be sat on the bench on a bright sunny day imagining you're on a tropical island somewhere...well almost.

 

No self respecting park would be completed without a fountain and a bandstand, unfortunaletly the fountain is turned off until later in the year, but is none the less kept in excellent condition, as is the bandstand.

The last picture in this series is of neither a park or garden but is an example of how the parks and gardens department are kept busy. This is one on a number of similar features in the town centre which is maintained by the department.