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The swinging archway

Posted by Dawn Isaac on 12 Apr 2010 at 09:42 AM

When it comes to objects, I do love duality of purpose.  Perhaps it's my natural frugality - after all, this is the equivalent of BOGOF (Buy One Get One Free) - but whatever the reason, I'm always keen to find these metamorphic creations.

Last week I did my traditional school holiday bolt to my parents with the kids, which means I saw one of my favourite dual use ideas - the swinging archway. 

It was designed and built by my father and is an extremely solid oak garden arch with a leaded 'roof' and fixings for attaching an oak and rope swing.  There is also an oak 'baby swing attachment'.

I'll admit the design has had one or two tweaks. The frame itself had to be bolstered with some firmer foundations after it began to 'swing' with the occupant in a rather unsettling manner.  Also, the baby seat's first outing did result in my niece taking an unscheduled dive out, head first.  Oh, and then there's the fact that fifty percent of the possible landing area is an inforgiving combination of gravel over concrete... 

To be fair, this last point shouldn't be a criticism as the arch was originally created not for the children, but for my mother, who loves to swing (and, let's be clear, that's a sentence that does not have a dual purpose.)


Foxnfirefly said:

LOL!! (On the remark "my mother likes to swing.....not a dual purpose.."  But the arch-swing is a lovely idea, and I'm sure the kids will have their memories of it as it is very picturesque.  I saw one at a mansion estate once that was made into a large wrought iron gate painted white.  Kids could run through the big gate arch and swing on one side.  A perfect childhood memory.

on 12 Apr 2010 at 03:28 PM

Dawn Isaac said:

Foxnfirefly - I love the idea of the wrought iron gate swing.  Don't suppose you remember where it was?

on 12 Apr 2010 at 06:51 PM

Foxnfirefly said:

Sure I remember! It's one of my favorite places to visit.  It is at the Governor's Palace in Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia, USA.  The estate belonged to a British Colonial Governor before the War in 1776.   The palace has been preserved, and all of the English-style gardens.  It is a lovely historic site.  Here's a link:

on 14 Apr 2010 at 04:20 AM

Foxnfirefly said:

I Googled some more and found this picture of one of the gates.  There is a larger one in the back of the maze garden that they hung a swing on.  We went to the 4th of July palace icnics a couple of times.  Kids go wild in the boxwood maze!!

on 14 Apr 2010 at 04:44 AM

Dawn Isaac said:

Thanks so much for looking that up for me.  It looks amazing.  Will have to add it to my places to visit when I make it over the pond next time!

on 14 Apr 2010 at 09:42 AM