Shakespeare’s London Locations – The places in the plays Guided Walk Dec 21 2019

Shakespeare’s London Locations – The places in the plays

2.30pm 21 Dec 19 Shoreditch High Street Overground Station

Most Shakespeare walks in London are biographical, this one is different. It is about the places in his plays. Exploring the places, the plays and the people the walk will hope to bring Shakespeare’s London to life amd give some insight to Shakespeare. And OK, there will be, perchance, something about his life in London, but we hope to keep this as one of those walks ‘which does what is says on the tin’. i.e. keeps focussed on the ‘places in the plays’. Sadly, in the 2 hours we have we won’t be able to get to Verona, or Venice but we might be able to shed some light on those locations by exploring their London equivalents.

Smithfield Pub Tour

The Smithfield Pub Tour takes place at 7.15 pm

on Saturday, November 30.

Meet Kevin just outside the exit of BarbicanTube Stop.

One of the greatest place for London history. Just outside the Roman City Wall and used by the Romans as a cemetary. The “smooth field” became the main live stock market of London, occassional tiltyard and place of public executions. The Peasants’ Rebellion climaxed here. On 23 August 1305 William Wallace (‘Braveheart’) was hanged, drawn and quartered here. Religious martyrs were burnt here and forgers boiled in oil. There are two monasteries which give a great insight into the Reformation, with connections to Thomas More. St Bartholemews hosted Britains’s greatest fair, and provided the oldest hospital in the United Kingdom – the second oldest in Europe. There are more pre-Great Fire buildings than anywhere else in London. There are also the trace of World War 1 bombing and Zeppelin raids. There are street names that sing: Cow Cross Street, Giltspur Street, etc. There are people names that resonate: Ben Franklin, John Milton, Charles Dickens, Arthur Conan Doyle, Rahere, to name but a few.  Oh,  and did we mention this is where Holmes met Watson and where Benedict Cumberbatch fell off the roof.

 

This is a London Walks walk given by Kevin Flude

Hampstead Village Pub Walk 23 Nov 2019

Hampstead Village Pub Walk

Hampstead Underground station, London 7.15 Saturday 23 Nov 2019

Hampstead is one of the best place to be on a Saturday night in London. It’s the roof of London. We’ll look down and see the lights of the greatest city on earth spread out before us. On a clear night we’ll even nip into the Old Observatory for a look through the telescope at the starry heavens above. What else? Well, it’s London at its most picturesque – a perfectly preserved Georgian village. There’s a superb cast of characters – ranging from the highwayman Dick Turpin to the painter Constable to the poet Keats; The Du Mauriers, Freud and D.H. Lawrence to Liam Gallagher and Boy George; from Elizabeth Taylor and Rex Harrison to Peter O’Toole and Jeremy Irons. There’s London’s most villagey atmosphere, great cafes, magnificent Hampstead Heath, and well-hidden, cosy old pubs you’ll fall in love with. This is a great walk – they just don’t come any better. N.B. the walk ends just round the corner from Hampstead Tube.

 

This is a London Walks Guided Walk given by Kevin Flude

 

In Search of Saxon London 2.30 30/11/2019

In Search of Saxon London
2.30 Nov 30th  Moorgate Tube Exit (West side)

The period between the end of Roman Londinium and the Norman Conquest of 1066 has long been controversial. In this walk we explore the evidence for Saxon London, from the Roman Walls to the River Thames and London Bridge.

The Romans gave the name of Saxons to barbarian pirates that plagued the North Sea region in the Late Roman Period. Historians link them with the Angles to create the germanic Anglo-Saxon period of which London was the leading town. But excavation and DNA analysis make the traditional story more difficult to sustain and although the Anglo-Saxond have a rich history how much of it can be trusted? Was there a Dark Age? When did London recover from the decline and fall of the Roman Empire? How did English become the main language sweeping aside native Celtic languages? In the streets of the City we will try to glimpse the reality behind the myths.

 

This is a walk for London Walks by Kevin Flude

The City Backstreets Pub Tour

The City Backstreets Pub Tour
from Roman Forum to Scrooge’s place of work.
7.15 pm on Saturday, October 5.
Meet Kevin just outside exit 3 of BankTube.

A tour though the lanes and alleys that wend their way picturesquely through the centre of one of the world’s greatest Cities. This walk has it all, not only at the centre of London and its history, but also one of the most hidden, unexpected and atmospheric routes, through lanes, alleys and courtyards between the main streets.. On route we will explore the origins of London’s financial heart, places associated with Dicken’s fiction, and explore the Roman origins of the City.

 

This is a London Walks Guided Walks. Look at their web site for a list of other of their amazing walks

Chelsea From Thomas More to the Swinging 60s Saturday Night Pub Tour

Chelsea From Thomas More to the Swinging 60s
Saturday Night Pub Tour

September 28 7.15 Sloane Square Underground

The walk will look at the history of Chelsea from its origins in the Saxon period with the Palace of King Offa to the present day.

Chelsea may be best known as the spiritual home of the ‘Swinging Sixties’ but it has many other claims to fame, and its pleasures are attested by the unrivaled quality of its architecture, its famous residents and its local history.

It was home to: Thomas More, Henry VIII, Turner, Bram Stoker, George Elliot, Rossetti, Whistler, Oscar Wilde, Lawrence Olivier, Mike Jagger, James Bond, George Smiley, Richard Rogers and many many more!.

It was known as a Village of Palaces in the 16th and 17th Centuries but it changed profoundly in the 18th Century when the palaces were torn down and the gardens turned into streets of Town Houses. By the 19th Century it had gone ‘downhill’ to become a centre of bohemian London, but enriched by a colony of writers and artists. The recovery from urban decline began in the 1950’s when Chelsea became the centre of a new vibrant youth culture that rescued London from mediocrity. Sadly, fame contains the seeds of its own destruction, and as it became more fashionable it became less affordable so although the creative ‘buzz’ has moved somewhere cheaper, Chelsea remains a beautiful place to stroll around in company with its illustrious natives.

The Archaeology of London Bridge July 14th

10:45 Monument Tube, Fish Street hill exit 1

This is a London Walks’  Walk

London Bridge is not only a charismatic part of London’s history and image but is also the key to much of the History of London. On this walk we explore the area both north and south of the famous London Bridge.

The area has been extensively excavated in modern times. On the north side we explore evidence for the origins of the Bridge, and the early Roman Port of London. Around the Monument we discover the archaeological evidence that gives new details of the events of 1666 and the Great Fire of London.

We then discuss the role of the Bridge as the principle crossing point of the Thames before going south over the Bridge to the Historic Borough of Southwark.

Excavations have shown that this area was as important as the North Bank in the Roman period, and we investigate how the area became depopulated when Roman rule ended.

The Bridge we now know was fundamental to the restoration of London in the 9th Century, and to the vibrant culture in the area that led to the prolification of Theatres in the Tudor period.

London Bridge to Bermondsey Guided Walk July 13th

July 13 2019 7.15

London Bridge Tube Stop, Tooley Street exit

This is a London Walk’s walk.

On this walk we are going to explore the eastern half ot the Borough as it was known to Dickens. We walking from the Tube Station east along the River and then follow the route to the famous Monastery at Bermondsey. This route takes us through one of the famous working class areas of Old London, full of traces of London’s extensive industrial heritage, in particular the leather industry.

Enroute we will visit a pub or two, and explore working class lives before ending the tour at Barmsey Abbey, (as Londoners called it). It was patronised by the Queens of England and became one of the most famous places in London. Some of the Ruins survive, and it still influences the street pattern. The tour will provide a history of Southwark since the Bronze Age as well as much more. And then there are a couple of great pubs.

Jane Austen’s London Walk

!8th Century Bonnets cartoon

Last one: 7.15 15th June 2019 Green Park Underground

(by the fountain in the Park)

This was a London Walks Walk

Also Given on 4 May 2019

The walk takes in the area of the London section of Sense and Sensibility. This is where Jane Austen frequented when visiting her banking brother, Henry. He  lived here during his ‘successful’ period, after resigning as a Captain in the Militia and setting up a bank to help soldiers pay for their commissions.  He then did what all good bankers do – went bankrupt and ruined himself, family and friends.   His uncle lost 10,000 pounds; his rich brother, Edward Knight lost £20,000. (that is 2/5ths of the fortune of Willoughby’s wife, and equal  to the income of Darcy,  100 times the annual income of Mrs Austen after her husband died)  i.e. a heck of a lot of money.   Jane lost £13.

But this area was also the centre of the Ton – the wealthy elite of Regency London. It was here that the French Royal family, in exile, hung out, and the haunt of Beau Brummel and Prinny, the Prince Regent, loungers in chief who were so well satirised in the figure of Sir Walter Elliot.   This is where the Dandies lounged, leered and shopped.  Here the rich could get their guns, swords, cigars, snuff, hats, shoes, tailored clothes, uniforms, wine, prostitutes, lovers.   They came to visit art galleries, see panoramas of European Cities, to ‘see’ the invisible women living in her glass jar, to choose their Wedgwood pottery.

And what is astonishing is that this is still where the megarich do exactly the same things: hang out and shop.  All the top brands are here, and instead of people like John Willoughy are to be found Russian Oligarchs, and the rich of the Emirates, and every other country in the world.  And most marvellously many of the shops survive into the present day. The same shops and shop fronts still in use.  They catered to the stupidly wealthy of the 18th Century are now catering for the stupidly wealthy of the 21st Century.  This is where you can buy luxury yachts.

 

So we follow Jane and Henry, and see the ghost traces left by immoral Willoughby,  sensible Elinor,  overwrought Marianne,  dull but nice Edward Ferrars,  dull and horrible Robert Ferrars, stolid Colonel Brandon, vulgar but kind  Mrs Jennings and her unforgivably vulgar daughter Mrs Palmer with her despairing husband; the Middletons, the Steeles gals ruthlessly working their assets.   Plus we have a little look at the relationship between Prinny and Beau Brummel, and the terrible childbed of Princess Charlotte.

It is a pub tour. and on the last tour we went to the King’s Head on Albermarle Street.  Nice early 19th Century pub with  an interesting basement bar.   We finished the Golden Lion which is a delightful little wainscotted pub up an ally near St James Palace.