WWII in Villa Fiori Park

I walked across the passerella in Ponte a Serraglio bright and early on Saturday morning to the Villa Fiori Park.

Ponte a Serraglio

The park had been set up to resemble a military camp. Tents, supplies were already there and some vehicles, with more to come.

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

These are well kept vehicles.

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

The soldiers looked pretty good too.

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

Ponte a Serraglio

I think being involved in a war would be wretched. I would like to think that occasionally in the misery, soldiers might have actually enjoyed a lovely spring day away from battle grounds in a green space like this. It is possible that they did, Bagni di Lucca was heavily involved in the fighting. There is still evidence of the Gothic Line, the most northerly of the defence lines built by the Germans, in the area.

This excellent display was organised by the Ass.ne Linea Gotica della Lucchesia.

Casino event

The winners are

Sunday was hot at Ponte a Serraglio, but it didn’t stop lots of artists to gather to take part in the art competition in the Villa Fiori park.

I wasn’t there, but my friends Moe and Liz took some photos to share. There are also some by local photographers Valerio Ceccarelli and Domenico Bertuccelli.

Artists found a cool spot where they could.

My friend Moe had a great vantage point on my balcony.

The standard was excellent.

There was music and dancing.

These were the first 3 prizes awarded…I think 3rd and 4th and 5th.

This is the second prize.

This is the winner.

Congratulations to everyone involved for a successful day at Ponte a Serraglio.

The diver

Some undergrowth has been removed from what is left of the garden around Villa Fiori in Ponte a Serraglio. A sculpture of a diving girl has been uncovered.

Villa Fiori

She is one of a group of sculptures that stood around a shallow pool, now empty and abandoned. The others have disappeared and she has lost an arm.

Villa Fiori

The neglect of this building is a crying shame…but you could do something about this. Villa Fiori is for sale. For less than €1 million it could be yours.

Villa Fiori for sale

Spread the word, tell everyone you know. There must be someone out there with vision (and money). Bagni di Lucca is a wonderful collection of villages, famous for its spas. The area is gorgeous, with mountains, a beautiful river and the first casino in Europe, as well as the spas that need a little love and attention. While other towns and villages in Italy struggle to find a focus for regrowth, Bagni di Lucca is a treasure trove.

It just needs someone with ideas and money to bring life to some of the magnificent old buildings. We love Bagni di Lucca just the way it is, and we don’t want it to change too much, but it would be great to see more opportunities for young locals, who shouldn’t have to leave their beloved home town to find work.

Art in the park 2015

On Sunday the eighth annual Art Competition organised by Borgo degli Artisti was held in the park beside Villa Fiori. The day was hot, so most artists set up their easels in the shade of the old trees. Art comp Villa Fiori
Art comp Villa Fiori Art Comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori There was a space set up for the children, and Belinda, to paint a dove or create their own art. Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Lunch is always an important part of the day…always. Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori The artists had to work quickly. Their work had to be completed in time for the judging. Art comp a Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori Art comp Villa Fiori The winners were… Student…Serenella Randazza 1st…Emilio Cavani 2nd…Silvio Bondarda 3rd…Massimo Ricco 4th…Graziana Masetti. A big thank you to Sheila, who took all these great photos for us. Sheila at the Art Comp …and thank you to Borgo degli Artisti for organising the event. They do a wonderful job on the Art Competition every year.

Click here to see the post by Francis with all the paintings and the winners’ works of art.