Category Archives: Puppydog tails

A Journey by a 1950’s London Bus

I came across this production by the Colonial Film Unit which tells those who find themselves in a foreign land, just how to identify a bus, the reasons we have a conductor, how to buy a ticket, and importantly how to queue. It’s just the sort of essential information our cousins from Africa would have needed in 1950 to assimilate themselves into British society. It also reinforces the perception that everyone speaks in either a plummy received pronunciation BBC accent or is a cockney urchin.

Opening scenes show Piccadilly Circus teeming with buses and cabs, some looking to be pre-1914 models. No cars or lorries are to be seen.

In case you haven’t realised, we are told that these “splendid” buses will transport you out of “the largest city in the world”, and yes, they will actually retrace their route back to the Metropolis, but we are told that one must ensure the bus is travelling in the correct direction for one’s needs.

The narrator describes how two “African students studying in London”, who’ve been walking across fields in the badlands of Potters Bar, now need to get back to their studies and prepare to catch the bus. They remarkably manage to join a queue at the bus stop, presumably having been told by the upper-class documentary makers at just what end of the queue to stand.

The Cockney conductor, after ensuring everybody is safely seated, collects the fares. The film is at pains to show even our African students are capable of purchasing a ticket, but our guinea pigs don’t have the correct change, which the narrator tells us that it’s just not the British way.

Later in the journey, as if to reassure the public, the bus manages to stop for schoolchildren at an early pedestrian crossing.

At the end, the students alight from the bus to a cheery wave from the conductor, before unhurriedly crossing the road, presumably the subject of another documentary to teach bright African students how to traverse England’s highways.

Wonderfully politically incorrect, and evocative of post-war Britain, when only those with the correct accent had the brains to use buses and a much-needed teaching aid for Johnny Foreigner.

Featured image: Northward up Old Bond Street from Piccadilly, the 25 bus, the only route on Bond Street, is bound for Victoria from Becontree Heath by Ben Brooksbank (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Florence Nightingale Quiz

The giant plague hospital is now opening today at the Excel Centre in Docklands, and has been named the Nightingale Hospital. How much do you know about ‘The Lady with the Lamp’? Florence Nightingale was born nearly 200 years ago.

Questions

1. Florence Nightingale was born on 12th May 1820 in Italy and was named after her place of birth – Florence. But where did she die?

St. Bartholomew’s Hospital
Guy’s Hospital
Mayfair
Grosvenor Square


2. Where are the statues commemorating the Crimea War, one of which depicts Florence Nightingale?

Waterloo Place
Army Museum
Guards Barracks
Imperial War Museum


3. Known as ‘The Lady with the Lamp’, what is wrong with the lamp held by Florence Nightingale on her Crimean War statue?

It is extinguished
She’s holding it the wrong way round
It is the wrong type of lamp
She never actually had a lamp


4. In Crimean War statue Florence Nightingale reputedly has something in her pocket. What is it?

An early stethoscope
Her spectacles
An owl
A thermometer


5. Where in London is the Florence Nightingale Museum?

The Hunterian Museum
The British Museum
St. Thomas’ Hospital
Her old London home


6. A favourite example of taxidermy is to be found in the Florence Nightingale Museum. What is stuffed there?

Her pet dog
Her pet cat
A fish caught by her
Her pet owl


7. Apart from the new temporary hospital, where else is the Florence Nightingale Hospital in London?

Harley Street
Lisson Grove
University College London
Guy’s Hospital


8. In London, there is a second public statue. What is unusual about it?

Florence Nightingale is wearing spectacles
It is made of an unknown material
She is wearing a large hat
It is a copy


9. The nursing school at King’s College London has an enviable record. What is it?

It is the oldest nursing school in the world
Successful students are the world’s most sought
More nurses qualify than anywhere else
The school is located in a listed building


10. Some remarkable anagrams can be formed from Florence Nightingale’s name. Can you devise any?


Answers

1. Florence Nightingale was born on 12th May 1820 in Italy and was named after her place of birth – Florence. But where did she die?

Answer: Mayfair

Florence Nightingale lived in South Street, Mayfair from 1865 until her death there on 13th August 1910 aged 90.


2. Where are the statues commemorating the Crimea War, one of which depicts Florence Nightingale?

Answer: Waterloo Place

Three statues are to be found at the junction of Waterloo Place and Pall Mall. Sidney Herbert, Secretary of State for War during the Crimean War, The Crimean Memorial and Florence Nightingale’s which has bronze plaque showing wounded soldiers arriving at Scutari Hospital which cared for 10,000 wounded in the Crimean War.


3. Known as ‘The Lady with the Lamp’, what is wrong with the lamp held by Florence Nightingale on her Crimean War statue?

Answer: She’s holding the wrong type of lamp

The lamp is of Roman design and not like the lamp Florence Nightingale used at Scutari.


4. In Crimean War statue Florence Nightingale reputedly has something in her pocket. What is it?

Answer: She carried Athena her pet owl in her pocket.


5. Where in London is the Florence Nightingale Museum?

Answer: St. Thomas’ Hospital


The Florence Nightingale Museum is located within St. Thomas` Hospital; nurses working there are called Nightingales.

6. A favourite example of taxidermy is to be found in the Florence Nightingale Museum. What is stuffed there?


Answer: Athena an owl rescued by her was left behind when she went to the Crimean War, it died. So heartbroken she had it stuffed and can still be seen.


7. Apart from the new temporary hospital, where else is the Florence Nightingale Hospital in London?

Answer: Lisson Grove

In 1909 a new hospital was built in London to her specifications. Nurses were required to be sober, honest, truthful, trustworthy, punctual, quiet and orderly, clean and neat. Renamed the Florence Nightingale Hospital for Gentlewomen in 1910, since 1978 is has been run in conjunction with the Fitzroy Nuffield Hospital.


8. In London, there is a second public statue. What is unusual about it?

Answer: Is a copy


The Guard’s Crimean Memorial in Waterloo Place of her by Arthur Walker has been copied. This statue, in the Central Hall of St. Thomas’ Hospital by Frederick Mancini is virtually a life-sized version of the original. In 1970 the statue was stolen and a replacement copy, made of a composite material, which was originally located outside, was moved inside in 2000. So this statue is a copy of a copy.


9. The nursing school at King’s College London has an enviable record. What is it?

Answer: It is the oldest nursing school in the world

The Nightingale Training School and Home for Nurses opened at St. Thomas’ Hospital on 9th July 1860. Now called the Florence Nightingale School of Nursing and Midwifery and is the oldest nursing school in the world still in operation.


10. Some remarkable anagrams can be formed from Florence Nightingale’s name. Can you devise any?

From Florence Nightingale’ you can derive:

‘Flit on, cheering angel’

‘Going? Then clean rifle.’

‘Reflecting on healing’

and remarkably

‘No lice, filth, gangrene’.

London Hospital Quiz

London cabbie Robert Lordan, published author, award-winning blogger and qualified London tour guide, has devised a great quiz for all of us with time on our hands.

You can find more about London at: RobsLondon.

With the UK now in lockdown due to the Coronavirus, many of you will no doubt be stuck indoors with little to do . . . so what better time to have a quiz?!

Below are 20 questions which, in honour of the fantastic work being carried out by NHS staff, are all based on London’s medical history.

Answers are written at the bottom of the page.

Let us know how you get on in the comments- and also if you’d like more similar content.

Stay safe and good luck!

Please let me know in the comments!

Questions

Q 1. There are currently 134 hospitals in London. Which one’s the oldest?


Q 2. At which London hospital did Scottish biologist, Sir Alexander Fleming discover the antibiotic penicillin in 1928?


Sir Alexander Fleming… but where did he discover penicillin?


Q 3. By giving a charity performance in 1858, Charles Dickens raised enough money to double the size of the original Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in the space of one evening. He later referred to the hospital in one of his novels- which one?


Q 4. Sticking with Great Ormond Street, the hospital today has its own in-house radio station: Radio Lollipop. From what unusual structure does it broadcast?


Q 5. Whereabouts in London would you find the Old Operating Theatre?


Where would you find the Old Operating Theatre? Clue: It’s near a river crossing…


Q 6. How did Yorkshireman Doctor John Snow prevent an outbreak of cholera in Soho in 1854?


Q 7. Which museum occupies a building that was once home to the Bethlem Royal Hospital?


Q 8. On which London square will you find a blue plaque honouring nurse Mary Seacole?

Whereabouts in London did Mary Seacole live?


Q 9. Which large hospital (now demolished) stood on Mortimer Street, Fitzrovia for almost 250 until its closure in 2005?


Q 10. Which hospital stands next door to Wormwood Scrubs prison?


Q 11. A statue named ‘The Boy David’ stands at the centre of ‘The Machine Gun Corps Memorial’ on Hyde Park Corner. How did its sculptor, Francis Derwent Wood, help soldiers who’d been seriously wounded in World War I?

The Boy David, Hyde Park Corner… how did this statue’s creator aid troops who’d been injured in the Great War?


Q 12. Inside which hospital will you find the Florence Nightingale Museum?


Q 13. In which part of London was the former German Hospital located?


Q 14. And where can you spot signage for the former ‘Nouvel Hopital et Dispensaire’?

It may be in French, but it’s in London…. do you know where?


Q 15. In 1865 a medical practice was established at 20 Upper Berkley Street. What was significant about it?


Q 16. Until 1988, which London hospital was the tallest in the world?


Q 17. Alfred and Ada Salter were a much-beloved couple who pioneered free healthcare for London’s poor in the early 20th century. Where can you find a group of statues dedicated to them and what is the artwork called?

Alfred and Ada Salter…whereabouts in London is their memorial?


Q 18. Which celebrated neurologist died in Hampstead in September 1939?


Q 19. In which decade did London’s Air Ambulance first take to the skies? And at which hospital is it based?


Q 20. Scenes from The Omen, Fawlty Towers and the Channel Four comedy Green Wing were filmed at which north London hospital?

Evil little Damien from 1976’s ‘The Omen’… which hospital has a link?


Answers

Q1. St Bartholomew’s (aka Barts), West Smithfield. It was founded in 1123 making it almost 900 years old.


Q2. St Mary’s, Paddington. The hospital contains a hospital dedicated to Alexander Fleming.


Q3. Our Mutual Friend: “A place where there are none but children; a place set up on the purpose for sick children; where the good doctors and nurses pass their lives with children . . .”


Q4. The studio for Radio Lollipop is based inside a decommissioned Jubilee line tube carriage (1983 stock).

Inside Great Ormond Street’s Radio Lollipop tube carriage. Image: Great Ormond Street Hospital Charity


Q5. The Old Operating Theatre (now a museum) is on St Thomas Street, near London Bridge.


Q6. He removed the handle from the area’s pump, thus disabling the main water supply. This action proved that cholera was waterborne.


Q7. The Imperial War Museum.


Q8. Soho Square (number 14).


Q9. The Middlesex Hospital.


Q10. Hammersmith Hospital.


Q11. Francis Derwent Wood crafted custom-made masks for soldiers who’d suffered severe facial trauma. His studio- nicknamed the ‘Tin Nose Shop’- was at the 3rd London General Hospital, Wandsworth.

Wood putting the final touches to one of his many bespoke masks


Q12. St Thomas’ Hospital.


Q13. Dalston (Clifton Grove) The building has since been converted into flats.


Q14. Monmouth Street, Covent Garden. This former French hospital is now the Covent Garden Hotel.


Q15. It was established by Elizabeth Garrett Anderson; the first woman in Britain to qualify as a doctor.


Q16. Guy’s Hospital. It is now the fifth tallest.


Q17. The artwork is called ‘Dr Salter’s Daydream’ and can be found overlooking the Thames on Bermondsey Wall East. The statue depicts Ada and Alfred remembering their only daughter, Joyce who died when she was eight years old.

Ada Salter dreaming of her daughter, Joyce


Q18. Sigmund Freud. He died at his home on Maresfield Gardens which is now open to the public.


Q19. The 1980s (1989). The helicopter flies out of the Royal London Hospital, Whitechapel.


Q20. Northwick Park Hospital.
How did you score and would you like more? Please let me know in the comments!