A small, but significant, celebration took place outside the cafeteria one afternoon in mid-December, just before sunset. An enthusiastic group of Friends, joined by Councillors and Park staff, met to enjoy hot mulled wine (very necessary) and mince pies. What could possibly be so important as to cause a break in preparations for Christmas?
Our chairman, Nicholas Hopkins, (right) explained that ever since the ceramic tiles had been conserved during 2004-6 we had wished to install better lighting under the arches. It had been a long haul to find the right method, but with the help of Light Projects Ltd a flexible system had been designed and installed. Councillor Nick Paget-Brown, (left) responsible for the Park within his broad cabinet portfolio, welcomed the development, thanked The Friends for their donation and declared the lighting officially switched on.
The phased, coloured lighting not only picks out and accentuates the main colours of the tiles, but greatly improves the general ambience of the cafeteria arcade, making it a much more attractive place to enjoy one’s coffee, especially on dark days. The tiles in the ‘bird room’, closest to Holland House, are particular beneficiaries, showing off their glorious colours for the first time, but all of the tiled panels can now be seen to full advantage.