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.
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.
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.
We take a slice of London’s history as we follow the course of the River Fleet North from the River Thames into Darkest Victorian London. Enroute we discover the traces of history, left not only in the Buildings and the historical stories but also in the very lie of the land. To reflect on our discoveries we stop in a pub or two on the way. Our timespan will stretch from the Romans to the Present day, and we will discover Palaces, Monasteries, Roman Temples, Zeppelin Raids, cow crossings and coal landing places as well as visiting the homes of Katherine of Aragon, the Rookeries of Fagin and Friends, the Street of Shame, the best modernist buildings in City, and Wren’s best Spire. A feast of topography, history, literature and aerial warfare; not to mention a couple of great pubs!
I have been putting off this moment for a long time. I maintained my old site using DreamWeaver but with the advent of responsive webs site and smart phones it was feeling its age.
The problem was (is) that the transfer from a technology which you are at home with to one that is new represents a colossal investment in time. The major block was how to load WordPress onto my webhost. I have delayed it and delayed it. Then a few months ago I found out it was easy. Didn’t do much on the new web site but came to the conclusion it wasn’t too difficult. This weekend I noticed how out of date my old web site was, and without any planning I bit the bullet, and this is, so far, the fruits of a weekend.
Here is a link to the And Did Those Feet Heritage Blog.