Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Poems on the Underground at 30

Adam writes…

I picked up this fantastic little book at Moorgate station last week…



…a little compilation from the priceless Poems on the Underground series which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year. Flicking through on the way home from my Ghosts of the Old City walk, I was delighted to find William Carlos Williams's This Is Just To Say was featured in the collection… 




It's a particular favourite of mine as it was the current Poem on the Underground when I first moved to London 24 years ago. My commute back then in that distant London summer took me from Woodside Park in the wilds of north London all the way to London Bridge and thence to New Cross where I worked at Goldsmiths College. On a hot, packed tube train, this poem took me away from it all and every time I read it I am transported back to those first few London days. I have loved the Poems on the Underground ever since. Happy birthday to a wonderful initiative.



Listen to the London Walks Poetry Podcast here…





A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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Monday, 23 May 2016

#plaque366 The Ward of Portsoken

A London plaque for every day in 2016. 

The plaques are selected from all walks of life, and all points of the London compass – and I'm taking requests too!

DROP ME A LINE or leave a comment below if you'd like to nominate a plaque for inclusion in the series







Commemorating ancient city boundaries Aldgate High Street E1.

“What does that mean?” asked one of our London Walkers from North America as we passed this plaque recently.

Good question.

The City of London – i.e. the Old City, the square mile – is made up of 25 small districts known as wards. The ward system is a relic of the mediaeval system of governing the City of London. Each ward has its own Alderman, which is the most senior position in the ward. In centuries gone by, the position was held for life, but in the 21st Century the Aldermen put themselves up for re-election at least every six years. The Lord Mayor of London is chosen from among the Aldermen of The City.

Much of the The Ward of Portsoken lies outwith the old City wall. St Botolph's Church is in Portsoken and its eastern boundary is Middlesex Street, the famous Petticoat Lane market.




A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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In & Around London… Lights & Lamps

Monday is mute on The Daily Constitutional (well, almost mute) – because Monday is the day when we post five images captured in and around London by London Walks Guides and London Walkers.


Collated on a theme or an area, if you've got some great shots of our capital and want to join in send your pictures to the usual address.






All the romance is gone: tending to a modern gas lamp

All the romance getting manufactured – photoshoot on the Thames

Ah, romance at last in Hyde Park…

…And some more at Temple…

…and yet more romance at the London Motorcycle Museum in Greenford



A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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Sunday, 22 May 2016

#plaque366 Pasqua Rosee

A London plaque for every day in 2016. 

The plaques are selected from all walks of life, and all points of the London compass – and I'm taking requests too!

DROP ME A LINE or leave a comment below if you'd like to nominate a plaque for inclusion in the series






Pasqua Rosée…

… an Armenian servant of a coffee importer by the name of Daniel Edwards, opened the first coffee shop in London, just off Cornhill, in 1652. Rosée was also responsible for the first coffee house in Paris in 1672.

By 1675 there were more than 3000 coffeehouses in England (cue another joke about a certain Seattle-based chain of coffee emporia having 3000 in one street). King Charles II, however, wasn’t so keen on ‘em. He believed them to be "places where the disaffected met, and spread scandalous reports concerning the conduct of His Majesty and his Ministers."




A London Walk costs £10 – £8 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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