All posts by Gibson Square

A Licensed Black London Cab Driver I share my London with you . . . The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

London in Quotations: Robert Montgomery

And there is London! – England’s heart and soul. / By the proud flowing of her famous Thames, / She circulates through countless lands and isles / Her greatness; gloriously she rules, / At once the awe and sceptre of the world.

Robert Montgomery (b.1972), London, Religion and Poetry: Being Selections Spiritual and Moral

London Trivia: The Peasants’ Revolt

On 12 June 1381 the Kent insurgents of the Peasants’ Revolt, an uprising headed by Wat Tyler, that stemmed from the taxes imposed on the working population for the wars against France and a growing despondency against the feudal system, arrived at Blackheath and encamped there.

On 12 June 1997 due to the untiring efforts of the American director and actor, Sam Wanamaker, the modern Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre, sited not 250 yards from the original site, that was opened on this same day in 1599

Mount Pleasant PO is on the site of Coldbath Fields Prison which forbade inmates from speaking and made them spend hours on the treadmill

The pillars in the basement of St. Pancras Station are spaced exactly 3 beer barrels apart designed as Bass beer arrives from Midlands

The playwright Ben Jonson was buried standing up in Westminster Abbey – at his own request, saying he was too poor to take up more space

Conservative MP Sir Henry Bellingham is a direct descendant of John Bellingham the assassin of Prime Minister Spencer Perceval in 1812

Leicester Square was where Maurice Micklewhite saw poster for The Caine Mutiny and chose Michael Caine as new name

Westfield Stratford, the largest shopping centre in Europe, cost the equivalent of the GDP of the 25 world’s poorest countries to build

Harold Thornton invented table football in 1922 attempting to recreate Spurs with a box of matches, he played it at Bar Kick, Shoreditch High Street

The tunnel between East Finchley and Morden (via Bank) is the longest on the Underground measuring 27.8km (17.25 miles)

The Company of Watermen and Lightermen are not a full Livery Company – excluded because they charged people fleeing the Great Fire in 1666

Rosewood Hotel’s Manor House Suite is the only hotel suite in the world with its own postcode: WC1V 7DZ for the rest of the hotel: WC1V 7EN

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.

London in Quotations: Frommer’s Europe by Rail

London is a dizzying delight, full of pomp and pedigree, a place where high culture and cutting-edge trends feed off one another.

Suzane Rowan Kelleher, Donald Olson and Darwin Porter, Frommer’s Europe by Rail

London Trivia: First female minister

On 5 June 1929 Margaret Bondfield, women’s campaigner and MP, became the first woman to be a minister, under Ramsay Macdonald, as Minister for Labour, and the first woman to become a Privy Councillor

On 5 June 1963 John Profumo resigned as Secretary for War after admitting he had lied over his affair with Christine Keeler

Bow Street was the only police station to have white lights outside instead of the traditional blue – they were ordered by Queen Victoria

The golden flames on top of St. Paul’s lean in the direction the wind was blowing on the night of the Great Fire

In 1637 playwright Ben Jonson was buried upright in Westminster Abbey as he couldn’t afford to pay for a larger space

London’s epic Parliament Square peace protestor (no one else can permanently stay there) Brian Haw, born 1949 stood there since 2 June 2001 until his death in 2011

Harry Potter’s magic luggage trolley sticks out of a wall between platforms 8/9 not 9/10 because J. K.Rowling was thinking of Euston

Until recently Londoners consumed a prodigious amount of champagne, by volume they equalled the entire amount exported by France to America

In the 18th century at the Cat & Mutton, Broadway Market hosted the Soapy Pig Swinging Contest, drovers lathered a pig’s tail and hurled it

The colourful benches on the Southeastern High Speed platform in St Pancras are the five chopped-up Olympic rings once hanging there in 2012

Isaac Newton lived at 87 Jermyn Street, St. James when he worked at the Royal Mint where he was tasked with prosecuting counterfeiters

On 5 June 1939 an assassin attempted to shoot the Duchess of Kent she didn’t realise what was happening and went to see Wuthering Heights

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.

London in Quotations: Automobile Association of Britain

Today’s London is a sprawling metropolis, teeming with energy and seemingly swallowing up all in its path, stretching from Surrey to Kent and Essex and receiving around 16 million visitors annually – over twice its own population.

Automobile Association of Britain, Illustrated Guide to Britain