Southampton's green spaces are best known by the central parks of West Park, East Park, Palmerston Park, Houndwell, Hoglands and Queen's Park that weave their way around the centre of the city. Blechynden Park is far lesser known, and while it makes it onto the city council's map of open spaces you won't find it on Google maps, and a search online will likely only return information about Southampton Central Station's car parking options. But while it's small, there's something charming about this little patch of greenery.
The park runs between the Southampton Central Station's carpark and Blechynden Terrace. It's easily missed, and rarely even used as a thoroughfare - the footpath is easily more convenient, especially after rain. Surrounded by crumbling walls, these are part of what give the small park it's charm. This is the shell of the Emperia Buildings, the large red brick building was built in 1905 but destroyed in the 1940s bombings. While the park lacks an obvious official memorial, seeing the greenery growing from a bombed out shell is an easy reminder of the area's history.
There aren't many facilities or ammenities in the park. A path runs from one end to the other and park benches are dotted throughout it. The benches and occasional lamp posts are the only real signs that Blechynden Park is an intentional space as opposed to an abandoned lot.
You'll see the park in it's best light during the Summer when the weather has been warm and sunny. If you're a little early for your train it's definitely a nicer place to enjoy a coffee than the station platform or tables inside the nearby Costa Coffee. On rainy days you'll struggle to make it from one end to the other as puddles form quickly and make the path not only muddy, but impossible to pass through.
There are few that would argue that Blechynden Park is the jewell in Southampton's crown, but it is a tiny park with a lot of potential. For now it's an interesting spot to walk through on a sunny day, but perhaps the space could be put to better use in the future. With a more regular rubbish collection, and a way to target the muddy puddles, this could easily turn into a beautiful little spot to pass some time and enjoy a little bit of history. For now maybe just bring your wellies along.