London Trivia: A handbag?

On 14 February 1895 Oscar Wilde’s most enduring play, The Importance of Being Earnest, was premiered at the St. James’s Theatre, in King Street on a really cold St. Valentine’s Day. With already three other successful productions currently being performed in London, it would go on to be his most successful and quoted play. Lady Bracknell, she of “a handbag”, was played by the gloriously named Miss Rose Leclercq.

On 14 February 1946 the Bank of England (‘The Old Lady of Threadneedle Street’) was nationalised with the signing of a 250-page bill by King George VI

‘Do not attempt to travel by taxi while suffering from the plague’. Extract from the Public Health Act 1985. Just so you know should the need arise

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

London’s first traffic lights, situated outside the Palace of Westminster, blew up injuring a policeman and causing passing cavalry horses to stampede

Upminster Bridge station has a swastika motif on the floor of the ticket hall installed before the symbol took on its sinister reputation

John Stow’s monument depicting him writing his Survey of London, he is holding a real quill pen, the quill is replaced every 5 years by the Lord Mayor

The London Eye can carry 800 people each rotation, which is comparable to 11 London red double-decker buses

In 1891 Arsenal was the first London club to turn professional, called the Royal Arsenal when the club turned professional the name changed to Woolwich Arsenal

The first parking meter was installed in Mayfair with a charge of one shilling per hour (5p) today the same fee buys you 45 seconds

The ‘porter’ style of beer was officially invented at the Bell Brewhouse in Shoreditch by Ralph Hardwood in 1722

The guns of HMS Belfast are targeted on Barnet in north London, but with a range of 30 miles could destroy Scratchwood Services on the M1

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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