The Best Bench In Greenwich

Just look at this, folks. It’s probably been around for ages but it’s the first I’ve seen of it and it’s fab. A low-tide riverside bench of found objects – built almost certainly of flotsam and jetsam from the Thames itself – for a weary walker to rest in the sunshine. Of course they can’t be too weary – as, sadly I was when I found it. After having been on a long cycle ride I couldn’t actually move my stiffened pins enough to climb over the fence to get to it. But I will.

It’s on the bit of the Thames Path you can actually get to just now (just before the cycle path runs out where yet another developer encroaches upon it, and cyclists have to dismount to join the walkers), very close to Greenwich Yacht Club.

I have no idea who created it, when or why (hopefully someone will come forward and claim credit) but I absolutely love it. I love that it’s not for all-the-time – it must get completely covered when the tide is high, probably with just the jolly yellow chap’s head sticking up above the water, and yet when the water’s low it becomes the perfect place to watch the wild birds, Thames Clippers and even the odd yacht pass by.

The only drawback is that there’s no direct access – you’d have to nip over the (frankly very climbable) fence to get to it.
Tell me this isn’t absolutely brilliant.

11 Comments to “The Best Bench In Greenwich”

  1. Marmoset says:

    I reckon it's King Canute, so shame on you for calling his throne a bench!

  2. The Greenwich Phantom says:

    So this could be the river equivalent of the Throne of Earthly Kings – the Throne of Watery Kings. That makes it even better!

  3. Sunay Modesto Khan says:

    The artist must be living at GMV – I've photos somewhere of a fantastic fish sculpture, made of flotsam and stuff, that I took a couple of years ago at the very same spot as this one and I'm sure I saw another one last year. I'm a big fan of the Gormley sculpture and 'a slice of life', but these are the coolest bits of art on the river-front!

  4. Mary says:

    I was down there a couple of weeks ago and there was a woman with a couple of little girls who were picking stuff up from the foreshore and adding to it. I did wonder if they had made it. Someone must be maintaining it. I don't know about it being one of the local arts projects – but you never know.

  5. Anonymous says:

    it's been there for at least a year, maybe 2. I'd have to search through my photos but I've been failing to get a decent photo of it for at least that long.

    On the subject of King Canute, am I along in thinking that the Thames Barrier should be named after him?

  6. Indigo says:

    It started off as a boat-come-insect flotsam/jetsam sculture in September 2008, I think. I have three photos of it taken then. Let me know if you would like one, to display alongside yours.

  7. layter says:

    Yep it's been there for a while, i moved back to GMV a year ago and it makes me smile everytime I see it!

    Best bit is it's never the same… someone's always adding to it, but never seen them :)

  8. Grace says:

    This was made by an artist called Jolyon Dupuy out of found objects, below is the link for his website.
    He’s a great guy and theyre house is absolutely COVERED from roof to basement in these amazing sculptures.


  9. Grace says:

    Well, I’m pretty sure it’s made by him, I know he’s done work on the shorefront in Greenwich before. It looks like his work.

  10. cathy dupuy says:

    Yes , this definately made by Jolyon Dupuy, it was part of the Greenwich Yacht Club Art show last year.It is the second sculpture that he has done on this site.
    If anyone is interested, we are having Open Studios this w/e- 3rd/4th/5th July 2pm-8pm, where there will be lots more sculpture (and the aforementioned fish) on show.

  11. jolyon dupuy says:

    just a word to say i spent a very pleasant morning today revamping the thameside bench…many thanks to all those who were kind enough to add flotsam and jetsam to the piece…i have done my best to incorporate all the objects in a more permanent manner…here’s a link to some pictures

    jolyon dupuy