London Trivia: Rule Britannia

On 15 October 1702 the first model for Britannia died from smallpox. Lady Frances Teresa Stewart, Duchess of Richmond and Lennox had been mistress to King Charles II and sat for the first portrait of Britannia. The Duchess was Diana, Princess of Wales’s great-great-great-great-grandmother. Britania was featured on all modern British coinage series until the redesign in 2008, in 2015 a new definitive £2 coin was issued, with a new image of Britannia.

On 15 October 1066 rumours circulated in London that King Harold had only been wounded that would have been one in the eye for the Normans

Number 17 Wimpole Mews was the home of society Osteopath Stephen Ward who became embroiled in the 1963 Profumo scandal

Lower Robert Street is the only remnant of underground streets below the Adelphi buildings built by the Adam brothers in 1773

Bethnal Green residents once knew Bethnal Green Gardens as ‘Barmy Park’ after a lunatic asylum formerly situated there

Edward VI punished Westminster Abbey (St Peter’s) by diverting their funding to St Paul’s hence the phrase ‘Robbing Peter to pay Paul’

In the central courtyard of the Victoria and Albert museum is a memorial to Jim, faithful dog of Henry Cole, the museum’s first director

The Palace Theatre at corner Charing Cross Road and Shaftesbury Avenue was the venue of the first Royal Command Performance in 1919

Only since the 1700s has Chelsea been known as that, before it was Chelsey, Chelceth; Chelchith. Doomsday Book lists Cercehede; Chelched

The phrase “Mind the gap” dates back to 1968. The recording that is broadcast on stations was first done by Peter Lodge, who had a recording company in Bayswater

Howard House, 14 Fournier Street, Spitalfields is where the silk for Queen Victoria’s coronation gown was woven

The City of London the historical core of the Capital, roughly matches the boundaries the Roman city of Londinium and of medieval London

CabbieBlog-cab.gifTrivial Matter: London in 140 characters is taken from the daily Twitter feed @cabbieblog.
A guide to the symbols used here and source material can be found on the Trivial Matter page.

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