Not far from here is Walthamstow Street Market ⇒ which dates from 1885 and is the longest street market in Europe. Also in Walthamsow is the William Morris Gallery ⇐ and just behind that is beautiful Lloyd Park ⇐.
This spot is up St Marys Rd or by bus up Church Hill. The sign post is rather whimsical as the only place open to the general public is the Vestry Museum and the church (for services and events). There is of course a pub with a garden.
Down the hill is Walthamstow. Behind the tree is the Vestry House Museum (in another post). To the right is one of the Alms Houses.
The Ancient House. And, there’s that pub again. Did I mention that it has a garden ?
And a n ancient Pillar Box for post.
St Mary’s Church ⇒ is open for services and a number of events. I managed to sneak in while they were preparing for a concert.
The above can be expanded for reading. Click on the image and then again to expand.
There wasn’t a lot of stained glass but it was of good quality.
So it’s goodbye from sunny (sometimes) Walthamstow
The Royal Mail was first introduced by Henry VIII in 1516 and then made available to the public in 1635. Later it became part of the General Post Office (GPO) which included the telephone system. The Royal Mail has been integral to Britain’s growth and maintenance since early times. More information (prices and location) can be found on it’s website ⇒.
Since early times the mail had to be protected from thieves and pirates.
It continued through two world wars, delivering to military personnel as well as civilians
The Royal Mail introduced innovations like the pneumatic delivery system, where a cylinder was sent by compressed air along a tube. The Royal Mail system had more than 40 miles of tubes beneath London. And ~.
Just across the road and down the hill a little is the the old Royal Mail’s underground system, where you can have a pre-booked ride (please see the website link above).
And return pre-packed ready to mail home. 🙂
More beautiful otters below. First Battersea Park. The park is larger than it looks and provides a boating lake, children’s play areas, a plant shop, bicycle hire, cafeteria and children’s zoo. More ⇒.
Battersea Park Children’s Zoo
There is an entrance fee for the zoo. More information and a broad range of facilities for children can be found here ⇒. Below are a few fun photographs but there is a lot more to see.
The park has modern technology. Here is its e-mu.
Young children can take a tunnel into the bubble and see the meerkats close up.
And, right next door are the otters.
Its feeding time and the otters wait by the magic door.
And, each have their own portion.
Time for a little lie down after all that walking about.
No longer available for 2017: There is a rare opportunity for visitors to photograph the interior of London’s St Paul’s Cathedral between 6:30 pm and 9 pm (last entry 8:15 pm) on the evenings of :-
- Thursday 27th July 2017
- Thursday 10th August 2017
- Thursday 17th August 2017
- Thursday 24th August 2017
- Friday 25th August 2017
- Monday 28th August 2017
- Thursday 31st August 2017
This is for hand-held non-commercial photography only and the upper galleries will be closed for the evening.
For those without cameras suitable for low-light conditions, the early evening may present the best opportunity.
For more information, ticket prices and booking in advance please click-on Summer Lates ⇒
For a preview (photographs from 2015) and general admission, please click-on St Paul’s Cathedral ⇐ .
For permits and commercial photography/filming, please see here ⇒.
The terrorists have failed. Not fear but defiance. Not hate but unity. Here in London’s Potters Fields and in Manchester. In Manchester where a young American girl returned to play a concert and stood up for us all.
In London where, at short notice, there were thousands at the Potters Fields vigil.
Muslims came with sympathy and with courage and with confidence in the sanity of Londoners that we would not be perverted by the actions of a few. They held banners and they laid flowers and they were applauded.
Such were the tokens of our defiance and unity.
And the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said:-
“London stands in defiance against this cowardly attack and our city and our people and our values and our way of live.
As the mayor of London I want to send a clear message to the sick and evil extremists who commit these hideous crimes; we will defeat you. You will not win.
And as a proud and patriotic British Muslim I say this: you do not commit these disgusting acts in my name. Your perverse ideology has nothing to do with the true values of Islam and you will never succeed in dividing our city.
We send our love to the victims’ families and all those injured and we thank our courageous emergency services and the brave Londoners who risked their lives. You are the best of us.
Our city is filled with great sorrow and anger tonight but also great resolve and determination. Because our unity and love will always be stronger than the hate of the extremists.
London will never be broken by terrorism. We will defeat the terrorists.”
And he was applauded.
And I say; London and the UK stand as a beacon of defiance and fair justice and refusal to blame the many for the actions of a few. That is what we are and that is our strength and we shall not fall from that state of being.
Nunhead is one of the “magnificent seven” privately owned cemeteries built during the 1800’s to accomodate the needs of a rapidly expanding London. The others are Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park ⇒, Kensal Green, West Norwood, Highgate, Abney Park and Brompton Cemetery.
Nunhead Cemetery is on quite a steep hill so there are bus route directions ⇒ to the top of the hill and include some other venues in the region.
To view the cemetery map, please click on and then again to magnify.
There are various routes with lots of ivy covered ancient gravestones but it was a sunny day so I kept to the cheerful.
Inside the old chapel there is some art work both modern and ancient. There are occasional exhibitions and tours. Please see the Friends of Nunhead Cemetery ⇒.
At the lower end exit/entrance of the cemetery turn left and then past the Waverly Arms are the bus stops. It is not far to One Tree Hill, the Oak of Honor and St Augustine’s ⇐, but it is up a steep hill so please see the directions ⇐ for a bus route. The same link shows a route to Peckham Rye Park.
From stop V across the road from Peckham Rye rail station the numbers 63 and 363 buses travel south along the west side of Peckham Rye Park. About half way along the park’s length is the easiest way to it’s centre where all the trees are. The Café on The Rye is to the left by the car park, whilst straight on is :-
Peckham Rye Park Japanese Gardens
If this is early April then summer must be amazing
Peckham Rye Park Lake
One Tree Hill is named after the Oak of Honor ⇒ and is a small nature reserve with St Augustine’s Church, the oak and a fine view across London.
The easiest way to get to One Tree hill and St Augustine’s is by the P12 bus from Honor Oak Park rail station to the top of the hill by road. There is a path on the opposite side of the road which passes the Maha Lakshmi Vidya Bhavan.
There is an alternative route via Peckham Rye Park and Nunhead Cemtery here ⇐.
The path leads first to :-
St Augustine’s Church
The church was built between 1870 and 1900 and has some fine architecture and stained glass. It is open in the afternoon during the summer months and is always open on a Saturday morning. More ⇒. Please check the website for services and events before you visit.
St Augustine ⇒ (354 AD to 430 AD) was an early Christian theologian and philosopher.
These walls aren’t really speckled. The effect is the consequence of an unusual mix of ambient light and a high ISO camera setting necessary for the dark alcove without flash. I thought it was a pleasing effect so I left it in.
One Tree Hill
On retracing one’s footsteps there is a set of steps leading to the top of the hill and the Oak of Honor.
If you think I’m climbing up there just to get a few photographs, then you must be ~
what ! no, stop that, get off.
Pesky elves. I wish they wouldn’t do that.
Oh well, since I’m here.
The Oak of Honor
This Oak of Honor ⇒ was planted in 1905 and is the third on that site. The original oak marked the southern boundary of a region known as the Norman Honor of Gloucester ⇒ which began its existence in 1166.
Legend has it that Queen Elizabeth I took rest under an oak on the hill when she went a-maying in 1602. Alternatively she had a picnic with Sir Richard Bulkeley on 1st of May. A-maying could have a variety of meanings including being quite frolicsome. 🙂
As an aside: The spelling of Honor, rather than the usual English spelling of Honour, derives from the antiquity of the place. Early English favored “or” rather than “our” for many words. These earlier spelling were transported to the Americas and remain in use. England seems to have developed and favoured the alternatives due to a continued influx of languages.
Near to the oak is a fine view across London from One Tree Hill’s southern position.
The oak and view are at position 1 on the map. To enlarge the map please click on and then gain to magnify.
The park proceeds down the far side of the hill to Brenchley Gardens where one can board the P12 bus again. The bus can be used to go back to Honor Oak Park rail station (traveling West and then back up the hill) or the other way to Nunhead Cemetery or Peckham Rye Park (later posts).
Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoyed the tour.
12 pics. London’s Guildhall was built between 1411 and 1440. It can be found near Bank Underground Rail station, just off Gresham Street. History ⇒. Right beside Guildhall is the Guildhall Art Gallery ⇐ which includes the remains of a Roman amphitheater.
The entrance is just to the left of this picture and the art gallery to the right (another post). The building is mainly used for social functions but members of the public can view the Great Hall, when not in use. Please see the website ⇒.
In the Great Hall their are a number of statues and stone tableaus. Here are just three.
And, at the far end.
I found a small unlocked side door ( I do love an unlocked side door) and some steps leading upwards. I found myself in the Old Library.
There were a number of old paintings and some tapestries.
Another side door and some steps down ~
Leading to a a small hall.
It was here I got nabbed by security, who were confused as to how I got into the members area. I agreed with them and was politely escorted out with my badly behaved camera (well, if they will leave old libraries just lying about).
Thank you for the visit and may all your side doors be rabbit holes.
The London Waterbus operates between Camden Lock Market ⇐ and Little Venice on the Regents Canal. The waterbus has a seasonal timetable ⇒ and the journey time is approximately 50 minutes. The Little Venice destination is a charming pool with a barge cafe and an enchanting barge puppet theatre ⇓.
The canal is part of a huge network that was once the lifeblood of trading Britain, moving goods and raw materials between ports and the hinterland by horse-drawn barge. Many of the old canals have been restored and now provide for house boats and holiday barges. History ⇒ and scenic Barge Holidays ⇒ (one source) and the Norfolk Broads Holiday River Boats ⇒ (no canal locks).
Many canals have tunnels and this section of the Regents Canal has two. The longest UK tunnel of 3.24 miles is in the north of England at Standedge ⇒ (pronounced Stannige). The long tunnels did not have towpaths and men had to lie on the cargo and push the barge along by walking along the roof or walls of the tunnel (called legging). Professional leggers were available at one shilling per hour and the Standedge tunnel would take a back-breaking three hours to traverse with a fully laden barge.
Here are just a few snaps from the London Waterbus journey.
Starting from a small cut just past the lock at Camden Market the waterbus passes St Martin’s Church and then some pleasant foilage.
Then there are several embassies.
The route passes through Regents Park (London) Zoo, although all that can be seen from the canal is the giant aviary.
One of the few remaining Catholic Apostolic Churches (Maida Vale). A curious religious movement which was founded by three self appointed apostles in England in 1831 and spread to Germany and USA. The church ceased ordination in 1901 and so became virtually extinct by the 1970’s.
Arriving at Little Venice there is the barge cafe.
And, a fine view back across the pool.
On the other side of the Little Venice pool is the Puppet Theatre Barge ⇒, which magically appears from Richmond between October and the following July. Whilst it may not look like much from the outside, the inside is warm and cosy and the performances are skillful and enchanting and usually suitable for a broad age range.
The area was first settled in the 7th century, although abandoned by the 9th century it was eventually walled off by Westminster Abbey in 1201 for use as arable land and orchards. The area was referred to as the “Garden of the Abbey and Convent”, and then later the “Covent Garden”. By 1654 a small fruit and vegetable market had developed. By 1974 the market had become substantial and moved to New Covent Garden Market near Nine Elms.
These days the market houses outlets for arts, crafts, fashion and a number of eateries. Whilst it can be expensive the entertainment is free. A large, interesting and not necessarily expensive market can be found at Old Spitalfields Market⇒ which has some speciality days.
A little opera (A Capella of course) with ones luncheon.
Or a string quartet.
Or perhaps a little bondage.
Maybe watch someone juggle with sharp stuff.
They do make an effort at Christmas.
- Christmas is coming, the geese are getting fat
- Please to put a penny in the old man’s hat
- If you haven’t got a penny, a ha’penny will do
- If you haven’t got a ha’penny, then God bless you!
18 pics. The Crossness Pumping Station ⇒ , just east of London, together with 82 miles of brick intercepting sewers, 450 miles of main sewers and 13,000 miles of local sewers were connected and officially opened in 1865. Visiting ⇒ sometimes steaming but not always open so please check the link.
This was to solve :-
At that time they believed that a miasma (odour) was the cause of diseases, such as cholera which killed thousands. Indeed a city could not grow or prosper without solving the problem. The solution, of a well designed sewage system, was a major part of resolving the actual cause of such diseases, infected water.
Another important contribution was a clean water supply system. An example of this and the great engines can be found at the London Water and Steam Museum ⇐.
The London sewage system was designed by Sir Joseph Bazalgette who also designed many other Victorian London buildings and mustaches. 🙂
The pumping station continued in use until the 1950’s, abandoned until 2003 when one of the four engines and most of the ornate ironwork were restored.
Visitors get hard hats.
Each engine was of the triple expansion type where; a high pressure steam cylinder (the lower here) received high pressure steam (lots of pounds per square inch) over a small number of square inches, an intermediate pressure cylinder received lower pressure exhaust from the high pressure cylinder over more square inches and the intermediate cylinder exhaust was passed to the largest low pressure cylinder. An efficient way to use all of the pressure provided by a boiler.
The high pressure cylinder in the basement.
The intermediate and low pressure cylinders on the ground floor.
A chap with a proper hat is always reassuring. 🙂
One of the main beams (the refurbished one) on the first floor.
And, from underneath. The shaft on the left operates one of the pumps and the one on the right leads to :-
.. the crank and wheel which simply maintain a steady impetus.
The governor (or regulator) is attached to the engine so that it spins. The faster it spins the more the weights are forced outward by centrifugal force. As the weights are forced outward they depress the central plunger which reduces the flow of steam and slows the engine achieving a regulated speed.
And, outside on a wet day..
I hope you enjoyed your visit.
A little history:-
1912 – during an emergency, Frank McClean had to fly between the bascules (lifting sections) and the high-level walkways in his Short biplane, to avoid an accident.
1952 – a London bus driven by Albert Gunter had to leap from one bascule to the other when the bridge began to rise with the number 78 bus still on it. – Harry Potter would have been proud.
The bridge is next to The Tower of London ⇐ and both are very close to Tower Hill Underground rail station.
Entrance to the bridge interior is from the either the north or south tower. Entrance from the north tower is easier because it means that one goes down the only section of stairs. I do prefer stairs that go downward. 🙂
Do keep your ticket for later entrance to the old engine rooms.
At the base of the north tower there is a lift which leads to a small exhibition/film area.
Then to the two walkways. Each walkway has a section of glass floor..
One small step for man.
One giant leap ~ these boots need a clean.
Younger feet seemed to have less apprehension doing this. Perhaps because when I was young glass was more fragile.
At the top of the South Tower and then down the stairs to the next lift.
Then out of the South Tower.
. . and follow the blue line on the pavement to the old engine rooms.
Coal fired steam was used to drive an hydraulic pressure pump.
Pressure in the system was accumulated under weights.
These are the engines which pumped water under the accumulators.
When there was sufficient accumulated water pressure it was used to power the bascules (central raising section) drive engines. Since 1974 an electrical driven hydraulic system has been used. Tours ⇒ of the less accessible interior are available.
Now on the South Bank there is access to HMS Belfast, a number of eateries and the extensive South Bank attractions ⇐ .
The Greenwich Royal Observatory includes Flamsteed House and the Harrison Timekeepers ⇐. In the midst is a small garden with this very impressive Dolphin Sun Dial.
The sun-dial is self-adjusting. As the height of the sun changes with the time of the year, the shadow position changes its height and so indicates a corrected time..
The Greenwich Royal Observatory and Flamsteed House.
Inside the onion dome is the largest refracting telescope in the UK. First used in 1893, it remains one of the largest refracting telescopes ever built. Entry is free except the night sky observation evening. For more and to find out about night sky observation evenings please click here ⇒ .
The Planetarium ⇒for which there is a charge.
The Astronomy Center ⇒ is mostly educational and is free to enter.
Astrolabes and Armillary Spheres were used to predict/exhibit planet and moon positions..
Visitors to the Astronomy Center can touch part of the Gibeon Meteorite ⇒. At 4.5 billion years old it is the oldest thing that a mere earthling might touch.
An early spectroscope. Spectroscopy ⇒.
Outside the Meridian Courtyard ⇐ is a 24 hour electric clock. The use of roman numerals means that it is actually indicates 2 pm.
And, there is a lot more to see and do at Wonderful Greenwich⇐.
All about Wonderful Greenwich and its many attractions is here ⇐.
One of the and most significant and greatest endeavours of human history has been the pursuit of navigational method at sea. It required the accurate measurement of astronomical observations and the development of a marine chronometer. The later being particularly difficult.
The Meridian Courtyard
The Meridian Courtyard is just in front of Flamsteed House, with the The Time Ball ⇒ on top. Here you can stand on the worlds east/west divide at 0 degrees longitude. Admission to Royal Observatory, Flamsteed House and the Meridian Courtyard is here ⇒.
However you can stand on the meridian for free where the red meridian line crosses an intersection in the paths in the park on the tourist map here ⇒.
The Meridian Line
There is usually a queue to stand astride the Meridian Line. This where the journey to east or west begins.
Inside Flamsteed House
Initially ones position, to the east or west of a starting point, could only be determined by dead-reckoning. That is, by measuring the distance traveled. At sea that meant measuring ones speed through the water. It was done by throwing a log overboard attached to a rope. The rope had knots at fixed intervals and the number of knots that were drawn out were counted for a fixed period of time using a sand glass. It was contrived so that one Knot was equal to one nautical mile per hour. A term that is still used today.
The dead reckoning method was woefully inadequate for long distances, no use for creating accurate charts and led to many disasters.
A better method required an accurate seagoing timekeeper. Such a timekeeper could be set to keep the time at a meridian. Greenwich was adopted and the time as Greenwich Mean Time (GMT). Wherever the ship was it would have the time at Greenwich. Therefore if at local noon the GMT timekeeper showed one o’clock the ship must be 1/24 of the way around the world. If the clock showed two o’clock then the ship must be 2/24 around the world etc and with every second that passed a smaller division. A fuller explanation and an extensive history of navigation can be found here ⇐.
After many years of effort John Harrison created the first maritime chronometer that would keep accurate time even on board a rolling ship.
The project began with H1 which was not accurate enough.
Neither was H2.
Neither was H3.
In 1759, after near 30 years of effort, Harrison created H4. This device had the advantage of advances in metallurgy, temperature compensation and the important realisation that a smaller/faster movement would be less effected by a ships movement.
There are more Antique Timepieces at the London Science Museum⇐.
Mechanical Marine Chronometers can be as accurate as 5 secs gain or loss in fifteen days.
The first quartz clock was created in 1927 and worked by counting the electrically induced vibration of a piece of quartz. By 1969 a miniature version could be worn on ones wrist. Quartz chronometers can be as accurate as 0.7 seconds gain of or loss in 15 days.
A cesium (atomic) clock operates by exposing cesium atoms to microwaves until they vibrate at one of their resonant frequencies. They are accurate to within one second in 1,400,000 years.
The next generation of atomic clocks will keep time to one second in 15 billion years. At last the perfect boiled egg.
Back to some of the artifacts in Flamsteed House.
If you would like to know more about the development of navigation and its importance to our evolution it is here ⇐.
And, thank you for visiting Freed From Time (which isn’t as much of an anomaly as it sounds, probably 🙂 ).
The Chelsea Physic (for healing) Garden ⇒ was established in 1673 and is the second oldest botanic garden in the UK after the Oxford University Botanic Garden ⇒. The garden has approximately 5,000 plants including those with exotic scents. It is a very peaceful and pleasant walled garden hidden away in west London.
There are some free tours upon entry but there is an entry fee and charges for the workshops, courses and special tours. Please see the website link above.
The easiest approach is by the 170 bus (bound for Roehampton) from Victoria Station to Chelsea Physic Garden. On alighting, just outside the gardens educational center, walk back a short way along the bus route to Swan Walk and the main entrance is little way down that road. Map of the Garden ⇐.
The garden is next to the the Royal Hospital Chelsea ⇒ (home of the Chelsea Pensioners).
Chelsea Physic Gardens Views and Flowers
In the Greenhouses
Around the Gardens and Outdoor Flowers
Farmopolis ⇒ is an ambitious project very near to the O2 arena on the Greenwich Peninsula. At present only a very small part has been built and is still a work in progress. It consists of a small café/restaurant with some indoor and outdoor seating and surrounded by plants rescued from the Chelsea Flower Show. These plantings should be complete by the end of August 2016.
Like many such venues I found the food and drink rather pricey and pretentious, but there are plenty of places nearby where a picnic can be enjoyed. There are events ⇒ at the site and the flowers are worth seeing.
Below is a view from the United Emirates Cable Car ⇐.
14 pics. Cities could not grow beyond a few tens of thousands and civilisation could not flourish without a plentiful supply of clean water. Otherwise epidemics of water-borne diseases such as cholera and typhoid would devastate the population. The development of filtration and pumping by steam engine was vital to progress.
The London Water and Steam Museum ⇒ (there is an entrance fee) explains the advances in water cleanliness and houses a number of steam-driven pumps, including some truly massive devices. On designated days some of the engines can be seen working.
The other essential was the disposal of waste and an ornate example of this can be found in east London at the renovated Crossness Pumping Station ⇐.
To get to the Water and Steam Museum: On Leaving Kew Bridge station, turn right, pass the very pleasant Express Tavern ⇒, and turn into Green Dragon Lane. The tall chimney is an easy landmark.
Alternatively Kew Gardens ⇐ which includes Kew Palace is just over the nearby bridge..
There is more about our use of steam and the role of fossil fuels at the Science Museum ⇐.
The above Boulton and Watt 64 inch (piston/cylinder diameter of 64 inches) has a beam weighing 15 tons and delivered 2.5 million gallons of water per day and was last used in 1944.
This is the 90 inch Cornish engine with a beam weighing 32 tons and delivered 6.4 million gallons of water per day. It was last used in 1943. The steam cylinder is the massive dark object at the far end. The nearer cylinder is the water pump.
This monster is the 100 inch Cornish engine. The 100 inch (8 foot and 4 inches wide) steam cylinder is the dark object the distance. The beam weighs a staggering 54 tons and it once delivered 7.5 million gallons of water per day. Built in 1869 it remained in service until 1958.
The above is the Waddon steam pumping engine. It was the last steam driven water pump used in the UK and remained in service until 1983.
Above is a triple expansion engine. Designed to be more efficient as most of the steam pressure is used by passing the output of one cylinder to the next.
On designated days (website ⇒) a small steam locomotive provides rides, although the track is very short.
Along Great Tower Street, west of the Tower of London ⇐, past All Hallows by the Tower (AD 675)⇐, there is St Dunstans Hill and the church garden. The church was Originally built around 1100 AD, destroyed by the Great Fire of London (AD 1666) ⇒, rebuilt and then severely damaged during WWII. The garden is now a quiet oasis in a busy part of London.
The Blackfriars Public House is where Queen Victoria Street meets the northern approach to Blackfriars Bridge and is very near to Blackfriars underground rail station in central London.
The bridge has recently been covered with solar panels. This makes it the largest solar power providing bridge in the world. Across the bridge is the South Bank ⇐ with its many attractions.
The Blackfriars region of London gained its name in 1317 from the black capes (capa) used by the brothers (frere) of the priory. More ⇒.
The public house was built in 1905 on the site of an old Dominican Friary. More and menus ⇒.
If you got redirected by Google Images, Kew Place is here ⇐
19 pics. I didn’t notice the eye (right in the middle) whilst I was taking the photograph at the back of Ham House. It hasn’t been meddled with and probably has a rational explanation. There is probably a rational response like aaaargh.
You can get to Ham House using the 371 bus to Sandy Lane from near Richmond rail station or via York Gardens ⇐ (please check the post for bus and ferry travel) and then visit Ham House and return to Richmond rail using the 371 from Sandy Lane.
The above is a bath. It has a stool inside to sit on and get bathed.
The peeping Oak tree is just outside the dairy.
The 4th Baronet, Sir Lyonel Tollemache, who kindly gave Ham House to the National Trust in 1948.