London Trivia: Snuffed out

On 30 December 1981 Fribourg & Treyer snuff shop closed its doors for the last time. A British snuff manufacturer and retailer it was founded by Mr Fribourg in 1720, at the sign of the Rasp and Crown. They sold cigars and snuff and cigarettes from at least as early as 1852, from their premises at 34 Haymarket. Customers included David Garrick, King George IV and Beau Brummell. The listed building and the intact facade still exists.

On 30 December 1887 a petition addressed to Queen Victoria with the signatures of over 1 million women appealing for public houses to be shut on Sundays, was handed to the Home Secretary

The City of London police is the smallest territorial police force in the world, as it only covers the Square Mile, although it has nearly 1,000 officers and special constables

The façade of Liberty’s in Regent Street is constructed from the timbers of the navy’s last two wooden warships : HMS Impregnable and HMS Hindustan

St George’s Hospital has a cowhide belonging to Blossom who gave cowpox to Sarah Nelmes in 1796 Jenner developed smallpox vaccine from virus

Playwright George Bernard Shaw served as a St Pancras councillor from 1897 to 1903, during which he worked to establish the first free ladies toilet in the borough

Novelist William Thackeray wrote Vanity Fair, Pendennis and Henry Esmond whilst living at 16 Young Street, Kensington

Henry VIII acquired Hyde Park from the monks of Westminster Abbey in 1536; he and his court were often seen there on horseback hunting deer

Leyton Football Club, claims to be London’s oldest club, Cray Wanderers if not once in Kent founded 1860, could be the earliest

On the Piccadilly line the recording of ‘Mind the GP’ is notable for being the voice of Tim Bentinck, who plays David Archer in Radio 4’s The Archers

In the 18th century a ‘Winchester Goose’ was not an animal. It was the nickname for a prostitute that plied her trade on the south bank of the river

The ‘Dirty Dozen’ is a nickname for a section of 12 Soho streets once used by cab drivers to short cut between Regent Street and Charing Cross

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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