WINTER WONDERLAND, HYDE PARK, LONDON
December 2013 and 2015
Winter Wonderland will be "celebrating ten years of sparkling magic" when the gates open on 18 November, according to its website. It is certainly a fascinating place. Occupying a sizeable chunk of the park, it is jam-packed with rides and stalls - a magnet for small children and their indulgent parents. Sadly, the weather doesn't always play its part. In recent years it has been rather less than frosty and the Wonderland's collection of polar bears and penguins look rather sad in the grey light of a rainy London day.
At times like these there's a certain bathos to the place. The architecture and the trappings scream fun, but the faces of some of the patrons - particularly those whose children have gone into meltdown - tell a rather different story.
It would be wrong to mock, of course. The vast majority of visitors love the place and it does have a kind of plastic magic. It is certainly a fascinating place to photograph and I will, no doubt, be celebrating the 'sparkling magic' once again this year.
Children watch one of the rides at Winter Wonderland. A plastic bear watches the children.
Family at Winter Wonderland transfixed by one of the rides.
A fibreglass mouse roars at Winter Wonderland
A polar bear, penguins and some human detritus
A woman smokes in front of a carousel at Winter Wonderland
An attendant at one of the attractions lost in thought
Another mouse, another child at Winter Wonderland
A fibreglass seal peers out at passers by.
A static Santa, a bucket and a child in a corner of Winter Wonderland
Disconsolate child is consoled by his mother at Winter Wonderland