The London Grill: Charley Harrison

We challenge our contributors to reply to ten devilishly probing questions about their London and we don’t take “Sorry Gov” for an answer. Everyone sitting in the hot seat they will face the same questions ranging from their favourite way to spend a day out in the capital to their most hated building on London’s skyline to find out what Londoners really think about their city. The questions are the same but the answers vary wildly.

 

Charley is a London tour guide, life-long Londoner and founder of Totally Tailored – an award-winning private tour company providing premium experiences in the UK (and soon the rest of Europe!). Once a week she Live-streams a tour from the top of a different London public bus. To keep up to date with this, join the private Facebook group – https://www.facebook.com/groups/livefromalondonbus

What’s your secret London tip?

Get to know London’s public buses – the best way to see the city is from the top deck.

What’s your secret London place?

Octavia’s Hill’s garden (Redcross Gardens in Borough).

What’s your biggest gripe about London?

That so many people have to work such long hours to live here.

What’s your favourite building?

The Tower of London – 1,000 years of history and still standing!

What’s your most hated building?

Strata Tower, Elephant and Castle. The three wind turbines at the top were intended to power the building. However, due to a fault (too noisy), they have never been switched on. An example of Green-washing (green credentials that are just for show and do nothing to help).

What’s the best view in London?

From the Duck and Waffle Restaurant, Heron Tower at night.

What’s your personal London landmark?

I have a favourite piece of Ben Wilson’s chewing gum art on Millenium Bridge. It’s St Pauls’ and the bridge in miniature.

What’s London’s best film, book or documentary?

Craig Taylor’s Londoners each chapter is from the perspective of a different Londoner, from a dominatrix to an Oligarch. It really sums up the diverse people that make this city.

What’s your favourite bar, pub or restaurant?

Jumi – Iraqi food stall, now do seated evening meals within Borough Market. Great people, great food, great atmosphere.

How would you spend your ideal day off in London?

Cycling to a new cafe to people-watching in a residential area I’ve not been to before. Jumping on a friend’s canal boat from Camden, doing a few locks, jumping off a local park to feed the birds (parroquets if we’re lucky). Posh dinner at Annabel’s or the Duck and Waffle before a film at an independent cinema like Notting Hill’s Electric or Bermondsey’s Kino. Cycle home via my local pub for a swift hello and pint.

 

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