Blog

guided walks around the City of London

London After the Games

When the party is over, the fun has faded and the crowds have gone, will London feel and look a different place? Certainly the Olympic Park will be a visitor attraction as more and more people come to see how a derelict, overgrown and neglected part of East London has been transformed into a remarkable…
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The Only Way is Essex

Wat Tyler has never had a good press but at this time of the year he deserves a bit more coverage. Alright, so it was on 15th June 1381 that he was snuffed out by the Lord Mayor of London, Sir William Walworth, during a heated protest meeting in Smithfield but maybe this up-front Essex…
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Gone and Probably Not Forgotten

Not long to go now. It will all be there for millions to see. Just out of reach. The fireworks, the razzmatazz, the smart suits, smug corporate smiles, congratulations all round, a mega MacDonalds. Where do you start and where do you stop when trying to imagine the opening of the London Olympics? It will…
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Gibbons the Master

I caught up with Grinling Gibbons in Oxford this week – or should I say that it was his remarkable lime and pearwood reredos at the Chapel of Trinity College that confirmed for me that this was a man who made such an important contribution to the rebuilding of the City of London after the…
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St. George in the East

Exploring some of the lesser-known parts of London is always revealing and a visit to St. George in the East, a parish squeezed between Wapping and Whitechapel, adds yet another dimension to the historical mix of the East End. The imposing St George-in-the-East church designed by Nicholas Hawksmoor, dominates the area. Being so close to…
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Hidden Secrets of Hatton Garden

The shelves of bookshops and libraries are groaning under the weight of books that explore, discover and enlighten all of us about the history of London. Here’s one more – just published – and it should be on the shopping list of everyone who enjoys learning more about London life. “DIAMOND STREET” is a fascinating…
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Secret Gardens

The Secret Gardens of the city never fail to amaze walkers and visitors to the capital. Yesterday it was a group from Rayleigh U3A who set off from St. Botolphs churchyard and included Drapers Gardens, Cleary garden, Postmans Park and Zachary Garden. The newly restored St. Pancras churchyard with benches and some fine wood carving…
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Pounds, Shillings and Poverty

It’s always interesting to see and hear what reaction there is likely to be for a new talk. For members of the Hornchurch Probus a lot of memories came flooding back when I went to talk to them in early May. Many in this group of retired businessman have links going back to the East…
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Preparing for the Olympics

The Olympic signs are appearing all over the place but the most impressive – and unusual – was the sight of HMS Ocean moored alongside the Cutty Sark at Greenwich. It was just a training exercise but during the games this will be the base for the the Armed Services personnel who have the task…
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Cart Marking Ceremony in Guildhall Yard

The new-look LONDON FOOTSTEPS website is designed to help you discover some of the hidden secrets of the City.  Coming up soon is the Cart Marking Ceremony on Wednesday, 11th July.  It takes place in the Guildhall Yard and features many of the vehicles – from wheelbarrows to buses -which have been seen on the streets of…
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