My London: Blythe Hill Fields

The writer Nii Ayikwei Parkes describes his favourite part of the city

A cloud study by Constable, from Hampstead Heath. Written on the verso: 'Sepr. 21. 1822. Looking South, brisk wind to east, warm and fresh. 3 o’cl. afternoon.'
©John Constable/Courtauld Gallery

My London: Hampstead Heath

The first of a six-part series in which writers reflect on favourite parts of the city

Clerkenwell
©Jasper Fry

Clerkenwell Green, by Richard Sennett

‘Each wave of transformation has marked the urban fabric… leaving unlikely juxtapositions’

View from Waterloo Bridge
©Paul Murphy

Waterloo Bridge, by Robin Lustig

‘The view from the bridge – the river, the London Eye, Canary Wharf – all make London look like the most beautiful and magical city on earth’

Illustration by Martin Rowson of Gin Lane
©Martin Rowson

Gin Lane, by Will Self

‘The updrafts and downdrafts created by Centre Point will send sweet wrappers and grit flapping about your ears’

Chelsea Physic Garden
©Toby Glanville

Chelsea Physic Garden, by Lisa Jardine

‘One of London’s best-kept horticultural secrets is a delightful retreat from urban life’

Ladies’ Pond
©Eva Vermandel

Hampstead Heath’s Ladies’ Pond, by Esther Freud

‘Above birdsong, the only sound is the hum of chat and the occasional scream of someone new braving the cold’

Brompton Cemetery
©Anonymous Bosch

Brompton Cemetery, by Iain Sinclair

The first in a summer series of writers’ reflections on the capital’s great views