After a wet bank holiday weekend, the sun came out at the end of this afternoon. Before the grass had time to dry in our local park, families were spreading their picnic blankets and the benches were filling up with people reading, chatting or just soaking up the sun.
Square du Temple is very colourful at present, with the bright flowers of spring bedding plants and the young foliage of the trees. As demanded by the style anglais of the second empire, the collection of trees is both varied and exotic, including a purple weeping beech, a ginkgo, a Japanese sophora, a Chinese cedar and an American gleditsia.
It’s a great park for families with small children. The colourful climbing towers and slides are set in a large sandpit, with plenty of benches nearby for watching parents or grandparents. From May to October the bandstand next to the play area hosts a regular programme of free, weekend music. There are sunny lawns for picnicking and plenty of shade when the weather is hot. All of which make the memorial plaque at the side of the main lawn more starkly poignant.
Every local school has a plaque on the wall outside, commemorating the Jewish pupils who were deported during the occupation. The plaque in the park lists the names of 85 ‘tout-petits qui n’ont pas eu le temps de fréquenter une école’, children from the arrondissement who were too young to have attended school, deported between 1942 and 1944 and killed at Auschwitz.