Category: London

The Hours Before Dawn by Celia Fremlin

Billed as the original psychological thriller, winning the 1960 Edgar Award for best mystery novel, The Hours Before Dawn was Celia Fremlin’s debut. First published in 1958, it is of its time in some ways but had me guessing throughout. Louise Henderson can’t understand why her baby son, Michael, won’t stop crying. All through the night he keeps her awake to the point that she can’t remember … Read More The Hours Before Dawn by Celia Fremlin

Whispers Under Ground by Ben Aaronovitch

Having found myself slightly addicted to the PC Peter Grant series, I moved straight onto book 3: Whispers Under Ground. Grant finds himself called to the scene of a murder at Baker Street Underground Station. The victim is the son of a US senator, stabbed to death with a strange piece of pottery that gives off the strong vestigia that tells PC Grant that something out … Read More Whispers Under Ground by Ben Aaronovitch

Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch

On to Book Two! So, after quite enjoying Rivers of London, the set-up more than the actual plot perhaps, I decided to try the second book in the series and see how it developed. We pick up just after Rivers finishes. PC Peter Grant is driving down to Essex to visit his old WPC mate Lesley May who suffered a catastrophic injury at the end of the … Read More Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch

Hidden London – Clapham South Deep-Level Shelter

Last Sunday was a nice warm summer day, Clapham Common was packed with picnickers, families and people playing football. What better to do than head eleven stories underground for a tour of Clapham South deep-level shelter?? The excellent London Transport Museum operate several tours as Hidden London: 55 Broadway (London’s first skyscraper) and Euston station’s lost tunnels are now sold out for the foreseeable … Read More Hidden London – Clapham South Deep-Level Shelter

Black History Walks in London

Last weekend I went on a guided walk with Black History Walks. These guys run several tours around London, from Elephant and Castle to St Paul’s, each taking around two hours. I did the Secrets of Soho walk (though most of it is actually in Bloomsbury, finishing at Soho Square). There is so much forgotten and hidden black history around this area which neither I … Read More Black History Walks in London

London, Sugar and Slavery

I’ve been to the main Museum of London site several times but this was my first trip out to Docklands. It’s well worth a visit – entrance is free and it’s great for families (I went on a Sunday afternoon and there were lots of family friendly activities taking place). For adults, many of these activities take place away from the main galleries so … Read More London, Sugar and Slavery

Sunken Cities: Egypt’s Lost Worlds

The first day of this exhibition was rather eventful, the British Museum having to close for several hours after Greenpeace activists climbed the columns to hang banners in protest at BP’s sponsorship. Since then, all has been peaceful and, whether you agree with the source of funding or not, the exhibition is definitely worth a look. We’ve all heard the tale of the mystical … Read More Sunken Cities: Egypt’s Lost Worlds

West End Treasure Hunt

I’m always on the lookout for cheap stuff to do in London (especially since returning home from travelling with a pretty decimated savings account!). Meetup.com is a great source for all kinds of groups and societies, and I had done a walking tour with Hazel of Walks, Talks and Treasure Hunts before. The West End is an area that I always think I know … Read More West End Treasure Hunt

Black Chronicles: Photographic Portraits 1862 – 1948

  Apologies for the pictures on this review – these were the best I could take on my phone and besides, you should really go and check them out yourself if you can get to London (several photographs are shown on the National Portrait Gallery and Autograph ABP websites). When I began writing my novel a number of people seemed surprised that, not only … Read More Black Chronicles: Photographic Portraits 1862 – 1948

Carlyle’s House, London

Not many have  heard of Thomas Carlyle – I certainly hadn’t before embarking on my research into the Victorian period – but he was much admired by Charles Dickens, William Morris and many other well-known personalities of the era. He also founded the London Library which still boasts many a famous literary member today. Thomas and his wife Jane moved to London from Scotland in the summer of … Read More Carlyle’s House, London

Victoria & Albert Museum, London – Introductory Tour

  The V&A run a whole programme of free tours covering everything from the Medieval and Renaissance Galleries to LGBTQ related objects that are found within its collections. The introductory tour runs four times a day from the meeting point in the Grand Entrance of the museum (current times are 10.30, 12.30, 13.30 & 15.30 but do check online). I went on the 15.30 … Read More Victoria & Albert Museum, London – Introductory Tour

The Geffrye Museum

The Geffrye Museum, 136 Kingsland Rd, London, E2 8EA. Free entry.                  http://www.geffrye-museum.org.uk The Geffrye is a unique museum in that it is set in the former almshouses of the Ironmongers’ company, built in 1714 with a bequest from Sir Robert Geffrye. These Grade I listed buildings have been home to a museum since 1914, and today the Geffrye is known as the Museum of the Home. … Read More The Geffrye Museum