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November 14, 2014
[london] 27 Of The Most Ridiculous Things Posh London Mums Have Said‘It annoys me that my own child wears cotton without any sense of its history or the historic struggles in its manufacture.’
September 16, 2014
[gif] The Thin Yellow Line … astounding animated GIF of a crowd leaving Wembley stadium. [via jzw]
August 19, 2014
[london] 100 Slightly Strange London Bus Stop Names‘Lady Dock Path. Lings Coppice. Little Britain.’
April 18, 2014
[history] The Last Places … the remarkable story of how Henry VIII’s wine cellar came to be perfectly preserved under the Ministry of Defence Main Building in Whitehall … ‘Writing in a 2010 issue of the AA Files Andrew Crompton describes the design of the poetically named MoD Main Building, which was “so slow in coming out of the ground that it became know as the Whitehall Monster.” In addition to the understandable delay caused by World War Two, Crompton ascribes its astonishing twenty-one year construction to the fact that the MoD Monster has “embedded within it a series of spaces that seem to have more to do with sympathetic magic than functional architecture.” Included among these embedded spaces are a Gothic crypt, a crooked staircase that leads nowhere, “five very fine eighteenth-century interiors” — the first ever preserved outside of a museum — and, of course, Henry VIII’s long-lost wine cellar.’
April 8, 2014
[london] What is it like to live on Britain’s most expensive street?‘Eskimo Ice services draws up outside one house – the company delivers ice sculptures for parties, and its website shows glassy ice lions and carved statues of the London skyline. Elsewhere, a van – Anglo-Italian marble installation – is delivering bespoke marble, granite, limestone and porcelain tiles. Gardeners arrive in a van marked Siddeley landscape design (a company that also appears to work on mammoth private estates in China and Russia). British Security Technologies is parked outside another mansion, its van promising in italic lettering: “We’ll Keep You Safe ‘n’ Sound Tonight.” A vehicle drives up to provide swimming pool and whirlpool maintenance. There is also a fire-protection services van, an emergency plumbing car and Rentokil pest control – because, it seems, money offers no real protection against fire, rats and plumbing catastrophes.’
March 12, 2014
[london] Oh shit, say tube drivers … The Daily Mash on the death of Bob Crow… ‘Martin Bishop, a driver from Peckham, said: “I would very much like the RMT to advertise – immediately – for a New Person to Scare the Shit Out of Capitalists. “However, I suspect it may now be time for me to drive a taxi.”’
December 31, 2013
[london] Norman Collier Street Sign‘Adv c d W rning M j r Gas Works’
June 3, 2013
[london] Highgate Vampire … fascinating story of the creation of a urban-legend in 1970s … ‘The Hampstead and Highgate Express reported [Seán Manchester] on 27 February 1970 as saying that he believed that ‘a King Vampire of the Undead’, a medieval nobleman who had practised black magic in medieval Wallachia (Romania), had been brought to England in a coffin in the early eighteenth century, by followers who bought a house for him in the West End. He was buried on the site that later became Highgate Cemetery, and Manchester claimed that modern Satanists had roused him. He said the right thing to do would be to stake the vampire’s body, and then behead and burn it, but this would nowadays be illegal. The paper headlined this: ‘Does a Vampyr walk in Highgate?’ Manchester later claimed, however, that the reference to ‘a King Vampire from Wallachia’ was a journalistic embellishment. Nevertheless, the 1985 edition of his book also speaks of an unnamed nobleman’s body brought to Highgate in a coffin from somewhere in Europe. In his interview of 27 February, Manchester offered no evidence in support of his theory.’
April 3, 2013
[london] An Autocomplete Guide To London … Londonist examines what Google searchers think about various London boroughs … ‘Romford is the cruelest of cities.’
November 12, 2012
[london] 150 great things about the Underground … a blog celebrating 150 years of the London Underground … ‘On 10 January 2013, the London Underground will be 150 years old. This blog is a personal catalogue, in no particular order, of some of the network’s finest features, sensations and oddities. Think of it as a well-meaning doff of a roundel-sized hat…’
October 10, 2012
[london] London’s top ten rude roads‘Bellenden Road, Peckham, SE15.’
April 10, 2012
[london] Shit London‘These are photographs of the unintentional human comedy that surround us in the city. It’s the flotsam and jetsam of city life , the overlooked minutiae , the tragic , the grotesque and the basest of base. It’s the adapted posters , the dirty joke on the back of a van , the mispelt signs , the glory hole in the public loo , that weird shop down the end of your road and the knob graffiti strategically placed for maximum effect.’
February 1, 2012
[london] How Far Can You Walk From Trafalgar Square Without Crossing A Road? … Vic Keegan does some extreme walking … ‘A couple of years ago, as a test of the walkability of London, I set out from Trafalgar Square — the official centre of the town — one Sunday morning to see how far I could get without crossing a road or going over the same place twice. It was almost 17 miles before I ended up going round in a circle. I know of no other capital city where it is possible to do this…’
November 3, 2011
[history] London, Summer, 1976 … a small collection of evocative photos of London from the mid-1970s [via Unreliably Witnessed]
October 10, 2011
[london] Bollards of London … a taxi-driver blogs the ancient and not-so ancient pavement bollards of London … ‘Bollards have a history richer than most objects placed upon the pavement and we can easily find some dating back to the earlier part of the 19th Century.’ [via As Above]
April 14, 2011
[london] A Look at What’s Happening at Tottenham Court Road … a fascinating post describing the work along with many photos …‘A drastic reworking of the station’s sub-surface layout has long been needed and it is this that is now underway. By 2016 the station will have a completely new ticket hall, new access tunnels, lift shafts and escalators. It will also connect through to the new Crossrail Tottenham Court Road. It is a project this is proving a unique challenge. ‘
February 12, 2011
[history] The London Pedestrian Crossing of Doom … the place where one man’s thoughts later caused the deaths of a quarter of a million Japanese citizens …‘We’re on the corner of Southampton Row and Russell Square in leafy Bloomsbury. There’s no plaque to mark the event but this is the unlikely spot where the nuclear chain reaction was first conceived.’
December 16, 2010
[politics] Bob Crow: ‘I couldn’t care less if we had a million strikes’ … interesting interview with the leader of the RMT Union …‘Since he took charge in 2002 the RMT’s membership has grown from 54,000 to 80,000, and has enjoyed substantial annual pay rises, improved conditions, and even the reopening of a final salary pension scheme. “The Evening Standard had it right, it said I was ‘obsessed’ with improving my members’ living standards. Dead right, I actually get pleasure when I see one of my members get a pay rise. That’s another one we’ve had over them. Yeah, I admit to that.” And they get it, according to Crow, because unlike most modern unions they are willing to strike.’ [via @LDN]
November 12, 2010
[blogs] London Bloggers … a wonderful tube-map based directory of London blogs has just seen it’s first update since 2002. (I’m guessing the developer was busy).
September 6, 2010
[london] Is There A Tube Strike? … useful single serving site for London commuters … ‘Yes! Today.’
August 17, 2010
[food] Food Bloggers visit an Aberdeen Angus Steak House‘Foul, expensive food, served incompetently in dreadful surroundings, Aberdeen Angus is a restaurant with no redeeming features. But then I imagine most of you suspected that already; the really nasty surprise on Friday was just how bad, not just passively mediocre but actively wicked their modus operandi is, and just how successful they are at exploiting naive tourists…’
January 4, 2010
[london] Darling At War With “Bully” Brown … apparently this was the last Evening Standard Headline Board produced on December 12 – Can anybody confirm that?
January 3, 2010
[london] 2009 in Evening Standard headlines … Samizdata.net on the Evening Standard’s 2009 Headline Boards … ‘At first the guys giving it away carried on with the billboards, but I knew that this practice would soon fade away. If no money is being made in the street from these newspapers, why go to all the bother of advertising them in the street. So it is that if you click on the last picture of all, you see that where there used to be informatively alarming stories about doom and disaster, now there are only forlorn signs saying that the ES now costs nothing.’ [thanks Phil]
December 30, 2009
[london] Evening Standard Headline Crisis 2009 … another years worth of the best of the headline boards from the Evening Standard – and probably the last due to it going free …

images of the evening standards headline boards in 2009
Click on the images for the full set

October 26, 2009
[funny] Central London For Tourists

Central London Tubemap For Tourists

September 25, 2009
[es] Evening Standard — Pics or it didn’t happen…

Evening Standard - Pics or it didn't happen...

September 22, 2009
[london] The Ultimate Uncluttered Tube Map … [via Unreliably Witnessed]

Ultimate Uncluttered Tube Map

July 2, 2009
[conspiracy] Unmasking the Mysterious 7/7 Conspiracy Theorist … BBC News on a supposedly pursuasive conspiracy theory about London’s 7/7 bombings … ‘In the absence of a public inquiry into the 7 July bombings, conspiracy theories have filled the vacuum. One of the more inflammatory involves a man hiding behind an Arabic-sounding pseudonym taken from a sci-fi film starring Sting. […] The 56-minute homemade documentary opens with a view from space and the words: “A message from Muad Dib”.’
June 26, 2009
[tweet] London Blamed For Jackson Death … #michaeljackson
May 14, 2009
[books] Revolutionary Espresso Book Machine launches in London ‘…at Blackwell’s Charing Cross Road branch in London, the machine prints and binds books on demand in five minutes, while customers wait. Signalling the end, says Blackwell, to the frustration of being told by a bookseller that a title is out of print, or not in stock, the Espresso offers access to almost half a million books, from a facsimile of Lewis Carroll’s original manuscript for Alice in Wonderland to Mrs Beeton’s Book of Needlework.’
May 12, 2009
[press] Diamond Geezer on the New Evening Standard ‘…to underline the paper’s new upbeat stance, a full page feature on inspirational pupils in the “poor borough” of Dagenham. I skimmed over it to be honest, because good news rarely sells, but it was encouraging to observe the paper looking optimistically eastward for once.Not so hot on pages 6 and 7, however. A full page advert for Fendi handbags opposite articles on Mayfair dining, Harvey Nicks and tax-whingeing financiers. Don’t care, not listening.’
February 9, 2009
[fun] London Bus Slogan Generator … Freedom Is Surrender To Darkseid:


January 22, 2009
[war] Rocket Strikes I Am Near … type in a London postcode and get a list of V2 rockets strikes in that area. Londonist: ‘V-2 explosions devastated Selfridges, Speakers’ Corner and Holborn. That isolated Caffe Nero near the mural on Tottenham Court Road stands on the still-undeveloped site of a blast that killed nine.’
January 19, 2009
[London] Worth a look: London Shop Fronts … [via The Daily Chump]
January 5, 2009
[london] Abandoned London‘Xmas morning is the only time that London is (almost) empty of humans – so a morning spent cycling around town taking photos.’
December 24, 2008
[london] Evening Standard Headline Crisis 2008 … another years worth of the best of the headline boards from the Evening Standard – my favourite was: Police Arrest Batman

images of the evening standards headline boards
Click on the images for the full set

October 19, 2008
[comics] Comica 2008 Schedule‘London’s International Comics Festival returns to the ICA and other venues, including an exhibition in the ICA Concourse Gallery, between November 14 and 26, 2008.’
October 8, 2008
[london] In Case Of Civil Unrest … pavement stencil from the Wooster Collective

In Case of Civil Unrest...

August 18, 2008
[london] A Hierarchy Of Tubes … an interesting personal ranking of the reliability of the various tube lines on the London Underground … ‘As every Londoner knows, all tube lines were not created equal. There’s a definite ranking of the lines you’d like to have to use, and those you’d like to avoid. So here’s my own, totally unscientific (yet, I hope, reasonable) list of lines in order of usefulness.’
July 23, 2008
[london] Last year I Killed a Man … a tube driver describes a ‘one under’ on the London Underground

A smart man inquired, “Do you know there’s a person under your train?” I looked at the blood on the windscreen momentarily before assuring him that, yes, I was aware.

He paused for a heartbeat, looked at his watch and said, “So, how long before we get on the move again?”

I was to look back on this exchange with amusement and also, strangely, comfort: in the midst of the horror, normality was briefly restored by a commuter asking for alternative travel arrangements.

July 22, 2008
[batman] Meanwhile, in London… Police Arrest Batman … [part of the Evening Standard Headline Crisis 2008]

Police Arrest Batman

July 1, 2008
[london] Diamond Geezer’s Capital Numbers‘Six tube lines interchange at King’s Cross St Pancras – more than at any other station.’
May 19, 2008
[politics] Boris Watchers … a blog taking a close look at new London Mayor Boris Johnson … ‘Boris Watchers has been set up to scrutinise the new Mayoralty of Boris Johnson. The blog aims to become a Wiki-style tool for constantly scrutinising the new administration in City Hall. We sure can’t trust the Evening Standard to keep an eye on him!’

Also worth checking out: Lolboris

lolboris johnson - help me jebus!

May 11, 2008
[oyster] Oyster Meltdown … another video of the uses of an oystercard dissolved in Acetone … ‘I melted the Oystercard in acetone and explored different antenna layouts. (very small, as a stick, foldable, etc.)’
March 16, 2008
[underground] Cooling the Tube … interesting look at the issues surrounding cooling the train carriages and stations on the London Underground … ‘When an underground train tunnel is first constructed, it’s at the native soil temperature of around 14°C. Temperature problems start to show up 20–30 years later; this timescale has been seen over and over again in different lines/metro systems throughout the world. Basically the tunnel is a closed environment with a lot of energy sources. The soil around the tunnel gradually dries out and becomes a much better insulator — they’ve measured this on the Victoria line and found that the soil is dried out for several metres’ distance from the tunnel.’
February 21, 2008
[london] All in a Day’s Work — the blog of a London Cab Driver … ‘A lady I took to Camberwell last night gave me a twenty and two tens for a £22 fare and I gave her one of the tenners back. “You’re honest” she said thanking me. “It’s the only way to be” I replied.’ [via Time Out]
October 17, 2007
[comics] Orbital Comics Top 10 Lists — amusing lists posted in Orbital Comics in Central London … [via Kottke]

a top 10 list from orbital comics in london

October 9, 2007
[london] No Job. No Money. You’re Fucked. — amusing fake Evening Standard Headline Poster. Part of a larger flickr set – London Newspaper Billboards.
October 8, 2007
[london] The Best Named Business in the History of West London … from Ben Hammersley.
September 12, 2007
[wikipedia] My Wikipedia Contrail: Tox‘Tox is a prolific and widely known graffiti tagger on the London Underground, active since 2000. His simple tags TOX 02, TOX 03, TOX 04 etc., in the style of TAKI 183, can be seen many hundreds of times across above-ground sections of the network in Central London, particularly the Metropolitan Line.’

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