On 5 August 1844 Queen Victoria gave birth to her second son, Alfred Ernest, at Windsor Castle. The event was transmitted to the offices of The Times within 40 minutes. Reporting the story The Times described the scoop as: ‘in debt to the extraordinary power of the electromagnetic telegraph’. He was second in the line of succession behind his elder brother, the Prince of Wales, and known to his family as ‘Affie’.
On 5 August 1100 William the Conquerer’s 4th son, Henry I, was crowned King at Westminster Abbey after the ‘accidental’ death of his brother
In 1959 at Wandsworth Prison Guenther Podola became the last man to be hanged in Britain for killing a police officer
Sir Christopher Wren’s first design proposal for St Paul’s featured a 60ft high stone pineapple atop the dome, it would be one of many rejections
The terracotta animals on the façade of the Natural History Museum extinct creatures are to the east of the entrance, the living to the west
At 4 Henrietta St, Covent Garden in August 1922 writer T. E. Lawrence (…of Arabia) tried to enlist in the RAF as John Hume Ross
When the rebuilt Covent Garden Theatre in 1809 raised ticket prices by 1/- riots broke out during the première of Macbeth
In summer 1974 Nude Show what is now the Peacock Theatre had Lindy Salmon’s bikini removed by dolphins Pixie and Penny
In the London 2012 Olympics Sarah Attar later became the first woman from Saudi Arabia to compete in an Olympic athletics event, when she ran in a heat of the 800m
London buses were not always red. Before 1907, different routes had different-coloured buses, London General Omnibus Company painted their fleet of buses red in order to stand out from the competition
7 Bruce Grove, Tottenham was the home of Luke Howard, the ‘namer of clouds’ who proposed the nomenclature system in use today
Etched into the frosted windows of the Albert Tavern in Victoria Street is an image of Prince Albert’s penis, just don’t ask the barmaid where it is situated
Trivial Matter: London in 140 characters is taken from the daily Twitter feed @cabbieblog.
A guide to the symbols used here and source material can be found on the Trivial Matter page.