Posts

Showing posts from February, 2018

Tour 7 Piccadilly Circus

Image
Our seventh walk captures London’s glitz, the flashing lights of Piccadilly and sparkling jewels of Mayfair, starting at the Ritz Hotel next to Green Park underground. From Victoria take a 38 bus or tube or walk up Buckingham Palace Road, cross the Mall with the Palace behind you and walk up Green Park on the path to the right by the fence. We cross Piccadilly from the Ritz walking up Berkeley Street to the heart of Mayfair. The tour takes in Faraday’s Museum at the Royal Institution, Burlington Arcade and the Royal Academy on the way to Piccadilly Circus, the World Time Today Clock and St James’ Church returning along Piccadilly to Green Park and Victoria Station.


Mayfair


From the Ritz Hotel cross Piccadilly and walk up the right hand pavement at Berkeley Street to the extraordinary Turtle fountain at Park Chinois and take the next left down Lansdowne Row to Curzon Street. Proceed to Shepherd Market where the original ‘May Fair’ was held which retains a village like atmosphere in the m…

Tour 6 Trafalgar Square

Image
From Victoria station take an 11 or 24 bus to Trafalgar Square and walk a short distance to the centre of London where our sixth tour begins. Road distances to London are measured from a plaque on the ground by the statue of King Charles I at the junction of the Strand, Whitehall and Cockspur Street, under the shadow of Nelson’s column. On that spot stood the original Eleanor’s Cross which starts this tour. We proceed from there via St Martin-in-the-fields to the statue of Edith Cavell, the National Portrait Gallery and, round the corner, the National Gallery. Descending from there onto Trafalgar Square we view the imperial measures. The tour ends at London’s ‘greatest sight’ in many reckonings, Nelson’s column.


Eleanor Cross

Charing Cross might derive from the French ‘chère reine’,‘dear Queen’ Eleanor’s memorial, the most southerly of 12 erected by her loving husband King Edward I to mark the nightly resting places of her body as it returned from Lincoln where she died in 1290 to her i…

Tour 5 London Eye

Image
Victoria station is major portal to the sights of London so many of which are free, at least to look at, like London Eye. Our fourth tour takes us to Portcullis House, opposite Big Ben, accessed by walking or taking a bus down Victoria Street to Westminster underground station beneath it. Accommodating MPs this building is named after the chained portcullis on Parliament letterheads. It’s prominent chimneys draw air through the building by natural convection. You can visit Portcullis House to attend public committees after a security check. The walk views Big Ben and the statue of Boadicea crossing Westminster Bridge to London Eye returning across a Golden Jubilee Bridge to view Joseph Bazalgette’s memorial, one of the famous Lion’s heads, William Tyndale’s statue and the RAF memorial returning from there to Victoria station.


Big Ben


From Westminster underground station under Portcullis House you can’t miss the UK’s most popular sight, Pugin’s 315 foot clock tower completed 1859 and ren…

Tour 4 Parliament Square

Image
Our fourth tour is of a favourite venue for tourists and demonstrators. Parliament Square adjoins the main seat of government, the Royal Palace of Westminster with its Houses of Lords and Commons opposite Westminster Abbey where monarchs are crowned. Take a 15 min walk from Victoria Station, or take a bus, along Victoria Street to the Abbey forecourt just off the Square. From Westminster Abbey we cross to the green to inspect the statues of Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi and, behind them, the Supreme Court. Proceeding past the statue of Winston Churchill across to Parliament we return to the Abbey via St Margaret’s Church.   


Westminster Abbey


With both spiritual and cultural significance the Abbey has the tomb of Saint Edward besides 3,300 ‘lesser’ mortals and is a place of national pilgrimage. Site of the anointing and crowning of British monarchs and of many state occasions Westminster Abbey traces back to Edward its saintly founder who began its building in 1044. The saint’s shri…