London’s most fascinating district – Whitechapel

London’s most fascinating district – Whitechapel

Following the previous post on Spitalfields, we explore the neighbouring area of Whitechapel – starting with one of its most notorious characters. The Whitechapel Murders These murders, assumed to be the horrific deeds of ‘Jack the Ripper’ shocked London and the world.   The murders happened over three months in the autumn of 1888.   And today, [...]

Why the US Embassy in London moved to Battersea

Why the US Embassy in London moved to Battersea

The new US Embassy building in London opened in January 2018.   But why was a new building necessary - and was it really a bad deal for the US tax payer?   Public access to the surrounding grounds has been possible since early summer 2018.   We went for a first visit. The former US Embassy in [...]

HMS Belfast – a Royal Navy cruiser in the ‘Pool of London’

HMS Belfast – a Royal Navy cruiser in the ‘Pool of London’

Continuing the naval theme of the previous post on the Mary Rose, here is something far more recent!   A time capsule from World War II and a reminder of the debt we owe to servicemen - as well as a great adventure for kids.  Being in central London and with elevated views over the City [...]

The Mary Rose – new museum reveals it’s magnificence

The Mary Rose – new museum reveals it’s magnificence

King Henry VIII’s warship, the Mary Rose, sank in the Solent on the south coast of England during an engagement with the French Fleet in July 1545.   The disaster was witnessed by many, including the King.   It was 450 years before she was seen again - after the world’s largest underwater archaeological excavation brought her [...]

The site of London’s Roman Forum!

The site of London’s Roman Forum!

Discover the site of London's Roman Forum - and the secrets of the Victorian Leadenhall Market today!   Designed and created by Sir Horace Jones in 1881, Leadenhall Market is one of the three markets he built for the City of London.  It was built on the site of the Roman Basilica and Forum (some ruins [...]

The world’s best museum of public transportation!

The world’s best museum of public transportation!

In Covent Garden, is the world's best museum of public transportation.   This is the London Transport Museum.  We can be sure of this, because London holds a series of world firsts; the first underwater tunnel for mass-transit purposes in 1840, the earliest underground railway in 1863, the earliest electrified underground line in 1890 and the [...]

The Churchill War Rooms

The Churchill War Rooms

Among the most popular and famous of sights in London are the Churchill War Rooms.  We visited recently to experience it again, along with the Churchill Museum. Commissioned in the nick of time in August 1939 the War Rooms were the venue for 115 meetings of the War Cabinet during the 'Blitz' of London in [...]

Ride on London’s abandoned underground post office railway

Ride on London’s abandoned underground post office railway

We took a trip on the historic ‘Mail Rail’; London's underground post office railway that runs west to east through the centre of London. The carriages fit two people in each one – bit of a squeeze for my brother and me, but great fun! It’s an immersive experience that takes you back nearly 100 [...]

Listen up medics; visit the Old Operating Theatre, London Bridge

Listen up medics; visit the Old Operating Theatre, London Bridge

The Old Operating Theatre Say what? - this is it is the oldest surviving surgical theatre in Europe!  We took a visit this weekend...still feeling grateful to live in the 21st century! The Old Operating Theatre was active between 1820 and 1862 - predating anaesthetics and antiseptics.  This is pioneer land in surgical terms. The place [...]

World’s first tunnel under a river – by the former Chief Engineer of New York!

World’s first tunnel under a river – by the former Chief Engineer of New York!

It may not look much on the outside, but this is authentic, world first London!  The building in the photograph houses the entrance to the first tunnel known to have been constructed successfully underneath a navigable river.  It connects Rotherhithe with Wapping in London, is still in use and you can visit it.  Descend the Victorian [...]