London Trivia: Completing Hitler’s work

On 20 September 1991, the church of St. James Garlickhythe, was almost demolished when a 170ft crane crashed through the roof. Having survived the Blitz, narrowly escaping a 500lb bomb which failed to explode. The church’s name ‘Hythe’ is Saxon for landing place it was London’s most important Hythe. Garlic, a vital preservative, and medicine in the Middle Ages was unloaded here and probably traded on Garlick Hill.

On 20 September 2005 Battersea Bridge was struck by a gravel-laden barge causing significant damage and closing it for repair

In the early 1900s police used the ‘Bischoffsheim’ hand ambulance, basically a long handcart, to move awkward prisoners to the station

Westminster Cathedral (the Catholic one on Victoria Street, not the Abbey) contains 12 million bricks – two million more than the Empire State Building

St. Thomas’s, a medieval foundation, had to move to make way for a railway line; its new site was beside the Thames, where the air was now pure

“The dreadful truth is that when people come to see their MP they have run out of better ideas” – Boris Johnson, Mayor of London

The chimes of Big Ben broadcast by the BBC every evening since 1923 are live, transmitted via a microphone hidden behind the famous clock

The Penderel’s Oak PH, High Holborn is named after yeoman farmer, Richard Penderel, who helped King Charles I escape by hiding him in a wood

Before 1914 corner pavilions were common in British clubs. Fulham FC’s ‘The Cottage’ which opened in 1905 is the sole survivor

Victoria Line the world’s first full-scale automatic railway enables a driver to close doors travel to next station at the push of a button

The Swiss Re: or Gerkin Tower’s upper windows can only be cleaned by steeplejacks absailing by ropes from a trapdoor in the roof

A Cockney is defined as being born within the sound of the bells of St Mary-le-Bow Church, Cheapside in The City of London not East 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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