London Trivia: The Hand of God

On 13 January 1583 eight people were killed in Paris Gardens a lawless area outside the City’s jurisdiction. This day was Sunday when God fearing folk at church. However crowds were standing on scaffolds watching bear baiting when the scaffolding collapsed. Many considered it God’s wrath as London’s Lord Mayor, Thomas Blanke would write ‘it giveth great occasion to acknowledge the hande of God for suche abuse of the sabbath daie’.

On 13 January 1612 the first purpose-built court house was opened in St. John Street, Clerkenwell financed by Sir Baptist Hicks

Cellars at The Mason’s Arms, Upper Berkeley Street were used as cells for those to be hanged at Tyburn to which there is a connecting tunnel

The first London Eye was erected in Earls Court in 1894 for an Empire of India exhibition, 300 feet high, as opposed to 442 for the London Eye

41 people drowned in 1867 after they decided to ignore warnings and skate on thin layer of ice on the lake in Regent’s Park

One of Boris’s first acts as London Mayor was to ban alcohol on the Tube – and all London Transport – from June 2008

On 13 January 1972 David Bowie, was photographed by Brian Ward, in front of 23 Heddon Street, creating one the most celebrated album covers of all time

At Vauxhall Pleasure Gardens one visitor complained that meat was sliced so thinly that a joint could cover the entire gardens

The Tube Challenge record did not appear in the Guinness book of Records until its eighth edition in 1960, when it stood at 18 hours, 35 minutes

Standing on the right on tube escalators came about because early escalators ended in a diagonal, one had to step off with the right foot

Over three-hundred cats were ’employed’ as rat catchers when St Katherine’s Dock was built in the 1820s on a site in which thousands had been evicted from their homes

It is from the white stones of St Mary Matfelon church, demolished after World War II, that Whitechapel takes its name. The church was built in 13th century

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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