On Saturday I was lucky enough to spend some time on Eel Pie Island, which is located along the River Thames in Twickenham.
I was invited along to the event by Sasha at Carl Goes, who was promoting her new book Carl Goes London Islands at the Eel Pie Island studio open day. I have actually wanted to visit Eel Pie Island for a while now. Last year I purchased a copy of Dixie Wills book Tiny Islands: 60 Remarkable Little Worlds Around Britain, where Eel Pie Island was given a mention. And from then on I was intrigued.
Eel Pie Island was actually a popular holiday resort back in the day but its more well-known history dates to the ’60s. Where some of Britain’s biggest musical names, think David Bowie, The Who, Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd and The Kinks played wild shows here. But now this private island is only open to the public twice a year for its studio open day. Given that the island is only a five-minute walk away from Twickenham station, with trains running there from Waterloo and Clapham Junction fairly frequently, it’s super accessible for those living in and visiting the city. And it’s well worth visiting when the island hosts events like these.
Once we crossed over the footbridge to Eel Pie Island it honestly felt like we had entered a different world. It was quiet, a little eerie, but very very eccentric. The houses we passed were painted bright colours and decorated with plaques and the like. And these were just the houses we could see.
And for those of you wondering what the Carl Goes London Islands book is like, it’s a brilliant read. You’ll find out about the 65 islands located along the River Thames, that you probably didn’t even realise existed. The handy maps and diagrams are super helpful in finding your way to the islands, especially if you’re not familiar with the area. And the interviews with some of the super interesting inhabitants of these islands are fascinating. It’s great to get an insight on what’s it’s like to live on one of the islands, so close yet so cut off and secluded from the city.
Until next time.
*NB* My copy of the Carl Goes London Islands was gifted to me by Carl Goes for the purpose of this post, but all views are my own.