On 3 November 1949, the BBC purchased Lime Grove Studios owned by the Gaumont Film Company. The acquisition was ‘a temporary measure’ used to tide them over as the Television Centre was being built. It would be nearly 45 years before it became obsolete. By the end, the building was in such a poor state of repair that the remaining BBC staff nicknamed it “Slime Grove”. It was redeveloped into a housing estate.
On 3 November 1783 highwayman John Austin, convicted of ‘robbery with violence’ became the last man hanged at the Tyburn Tree
Lady Elizabeth Hatton leaving a ball was found in a yard blood still pumping from her torn body Bleeding Heart Yard commemorates her murder
When an architect was told he must leave a gap in his office block to allow access to St Peter’s in Cornhill he decorated it with devils
Ben Johnson was too poor to afford the normal grave space in Westminster Abbey and so his friends paid to have him buried standing up
During the American Civil War London cabbies unadvisedly flew the Confederate flag in support from their Hansom cabs
Named after London’s famous comic, Joseph Grimaldi Park in Islington plays host to an annual ceremony populated by clowns
Twining Teas opened 1707 on the Strand selling tea to Queen Anne, it’s the oldest business in Britain operating from their original premises
The red rose, an emblem for England’s rugby team was chosen before the first international in 1871 and is copied from Rugby School’s crest
The world’s longest continuous railway tunnel is the Northern Line: Morden to East Finchley totalling 17.3 miles, 24 stations and 3 junctions
When escalators were first installed at Earls Court Bumper Harris a one-legged man was employed to demonstrate their safety and ease of use
Her Majesty The Queen cannot enter The City of London without first asking permission from The Lord Mayor a ceremony performed at Temple Bar
Trivial 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.