London Trivia: Pirate gets a gong

On 4 April 1581 French diplomat M. de Marchaumont dubbed Sir Francis Drake on board his ship, the Golden Hind. Although Elizabeth I was present the honour was bestowed on the Frenchman who was trying to get the Queen to marry the King of France’s brother, the Duke of Anjou. In fact the diplomat only achieved giving the knighthood to a privateer, slaver and politician, Queen Bess remained a spinster.

On 4 April 1981, after 152 years, Oxford University’s first woman cox, 23-year-old Susan Brown, won the annual Boat Race

Ruth Ellis and Styllou Christofi, the last two women hanged for murder, incredibly both independent crimes were committed in South Hill Park

Caledonian Road is named after the former Royal Caledonian School, established for Scottish children orphaned by the Napoleonic Wars

The Necropolis Railway Company transported coffins from Waterloo to Brockwood Cemetery customers chose between first, second and third class

Pear Tree House, Hawke Road is built on top of a nuclear bunker with a thick reinforced blast door, designed as a local control centre

The interior of 50 Smith Street, Chelsea was used as the model for the Banks family in Mary Poppins, it was also its author P. L. Travers home

The Temperance public house on Fulham High Street was originally a billiard hall for the Temperance Movement discouraging alcohol

In 1981 Queens Park Rangers became the first ground in the English Football League to install an artificial pitch, it lasted a decade

Opened in 1908 the Rotherhithe Tunnel is the only tunnel beneath the Thames to have a shared space with cars and pedestrian

Car showroom Classic Chrome’s MD Garry Shortt has as his office the 1860s personal waiting room of Queen Victoria at Mortlake Station

When Walt Disney and his wife visited London in 1965 a cabbie told him of Disney Place/Disney Street (no connection) and took his photo here

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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