Monday, 26 January 2015

In & Around Sydney. Wha'? Huh? Happy #AustraliaDay


Monday is mute on The Daily Constitutional (well, almost mute) – because Monday is the day when we post five images captured in and around SYDNEY by London Walks Guides and London Walkers.



Collated on a theme or an area, if you've got some great shots of our capital and want to join in send your pictures to the usual address.


Hang on! That's NOT St James's Park!

Hoots! That's NOT the Robert Burns statue in Embankment Gardens!

Whoah! That's NOT Mind The Gap!

What the…!? That's NOT The Strand!

Oooft! That's NOT Southwark Cathedral from The Shard!




Normal service will return next Monday! Happy Australia Day to one and all!





A London Walk costs £9 – £7 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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Sunday, 25 January 2015

Walk of the Week: William Morris & Friends


Every Sunday we’ll pluck just one walk from the vast London Walks repertoire and put it centre stage.





You can check out the full schedule at www.walks.com.





But if you only take one walking tour this week, why not make it…







WILLIAM MORRIS & FRIENDS

Saturday 31st January 2015

at 2:30pm 

Meeting Point: Stamford Brook Tube


Arts and Crafts in Hammersmith. Yes, that's the sub-title for this Tour du Jour. And what I'm telling you is, whatever you do don't be fooled by it. This walk is a walk that banishes bland. It's a well-I-never from first to last. The man, his circle, the neighbourhood, the history – they're all so worth getting to know. Our man was the anti-parliamentarian who wanted to turn the Houses of Parliament into a dung-house. Designer. Artistic entrepreneur. Radical. Traditionalist. Founding father of British Socialism. Poet. Story teller. Best seller. Dreaming boy. Bearded patriarch. Translator of Icelandic epics. Husband of a Pre-Raphaelite icon (whose affair with Dante Gabriel Rossetti was a Victorian show-stopper). This is his London. A couple of particulars. 1.) We're usually able to visit WM's riverside house. 2) He spent the last 18 years of his life here – this was his neighbourhood. It was an arts and crafts hot-house: bookbinding, calligraphy, silversmithing, printing... there was creation here, there were beautiful things here. 3) Still are, not least because we'll be walking along one of the loveliest stretches of the Thames. Guided by Ann. N.B. the walk takes about two hours and ends near HammersmithTube.

To go on the William Morris & Friends walk meet Ann just outside the exit of Stamford Brook Tube.





A London Walk costs £9 – £7 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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Happy Burns Night!


A little bit of Scots linguistic whimsy for Burns Night, spotted way out west along the River Thames at Strand-on-the-Green…








… a fine vessel named the Peerie Dunter. Peerie being…



and Dunter meaning…



And so: A small eider duck.

Thanks to my handy Chambers Scots Dictionary for the definitions.

But peerie can also mean…




… a small comparatively small quantity of fluid such as a canal, say. And dunt is more commonly defined as…



(The dunt was the accepted modus operandi of the electrical layman who wished to get a clearer picture on his malfunctioning television set. At least it was when growing up in my house.)

Thus the Peerie Dunter is the perfect name for a canal boat that will inevitably, from time-to-time brush by – or dunt – the odd peerie – or duck – in a peerie. Hence the Peerie Dunter is a peerie dunter.



Sláinte!






A London Walk costs £9 – £7 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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Saturday, 24 January 2015

London Spy 24:01:15 Our Weekly #London Review




It's our weekly London roundup starting with a few headlines that caught the eye in London this week, click the links for the full stories…






FOOD: Soho Bunker To Become Restaurant – Evening Standard



MUSIC: The Death of Denmark Street – The Guardian



SOCIETY: What Are Londoners Like? Bromley News Shopper






BLOGGING: Brixton Blog Appoints Paid Editor – Hold The Front Page









NFL: Where To Watch The Superbowl In London – Evening Standard










Best Feet Forward – Walking & Shoe News This Week

Walk With Me

Consider this from Time magazine:

A quick jaunt with coworkers could make you feel better all over, according to a new study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.


Of course, fans of The West Wing have known this all along, as this memorable parody video will show:  www.youtube.com (sorry folks, we were not allowed to embed it, but it is worth a click!).

Catch up with the Time article here: time.com


The New York Times is at it, too…

A new study finds that even gentle lunchtime strolls can perceptibly — and immediately — buoy people’s moods and ability to handle stress at work.

Read the full article HERE.

Last word on the subject goes to Daily Constitutional Special Correspondent David Tucker, Tweeting earlier this week:








Looking Ahead…


We LOVE the look of this one: Fashion on the Ration: 40s Street Style at the Imperial War Museum…



The exhibition opens on the 31st March and you can book now (it looks like a popular one so book early). The IWM website is here: www.iwm.org.uk





If You Do One OTHER Thing In London This Week…

Our weekly slot in which we point you in the direction of other happenings and events in our great city. A new exhibition, a gig, a museum, a pop-up-shop – the best of London within a few minutes of a London Walks walking tour.






Plan a visit to Craven Cottage, home of Fulham Football Club.

Fulham F.C bill themselves as London's oldest football club. Founded in 1879, their home ground at Craven Cottage, one of London's quirkier arenas. 



Its singularity stems largely from the presence of a pavilion at one corner of the ground, dating from 1905 and designed by renowned stadium architect Archibald Leith. The Johnny Haynes Stand was also designed by Leith and is the oldest existing stand in the Football League.

Fulham hold a special place in the hearts of the neutral London football fan. They are very proud of their history down in SW6, particularly of their contribution to the 1966 legend. In 1966 Fulham's George Cohen wore the number 2 jersey for England as they defeated West Germany in the World Cup Final.

The club offer stadium tours (booking essential) and their next home match is on 7th February against Birmingham City.









Free Walks This Weekend – But Some Are More Free Than Others

Good luck to our London Walkers who hop on TFL's free walks express this weekend. 

They are genuinely free – guides won’t be cadging for tips the way the commercial “free” walks operators do. (That juxtaposition – “commercial” and “free” – says it all, doesn’t it.)

And while they do get a big turnout you’ll get an acceptable standard of guiding. You won’t have to put up with the kind of thing we overheard the other day outside Westminster Abbey on one of the “‘free’-but-not-really-free“ walks. (“When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean - neither more nor less.”)  

Coming into the home stretch – “tip time” – their red-clad (but not red faced) guide was addressing those poor souls thusly: 

"This is Westminster Abbey [so far so good, for indeed it was]. Every English king* has been coronated here for a thousand years".

Show stopper verb and headline news to Edwards V and VIII. 

A one-off? Alas, afraid not. As Guide of the Year Award winner Judy put it, “I’ve heard them use that verb before!! Unbelievably ignorant!”

*And as for William the Conqueror and his line not being, er, English – well, no point really in even going there, that’s way too complicated. I mean they’re “free”, what do you expect.


Hmmm. This has got us a-mulling. You know Private Eye’s Pseuds’ Corner and Commentator Balls – we wonder if there’s anything to be said for London Walks getting a “Free” Walks Balls number going? 



Last Word… Happy Burns Night!

Tomorrow – 25th January – is Burns night, the birthday of Scotland's national poet. In honour of that day, we're reblogging two pics of our editor Adam, the first taken in London's Embankment Gardens, the second in Dunedin, New Zealand, both featuring statues of Burns.






P.S. A THIRD Burns statue will appear on The Daily Constitutional on Monday to celebrate Australia Day… Huh? How so? All will be revealed on Monday. Have a great weekend!






A London Walk costs £9 – £7 concession. To join a London Walk, simply meet your guide at the designated tube station at the appointed time. Details of all London Walks can be found at www.walks.com.









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