: ' London life'

It’s like Florence with rain

Each month American Express Essentials present a selection of the most original travel and lifestyle trends with ideas from around the world. I was recently asked by them to contribute for their travel section some suggestions [...]

A Festival of Plague

This year marks the 350th anniversary of the last great plague to arrive in London. By the year’s end nearly 100,000 people were dead most from infection while many ‘natural’ deaths were probably unreported plague victims. As the [...]

A Laundry List of Things To Do

The great Samuel Johnson once said that when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life. So, why is it Londoners spend so much time on boring things like laundry when they could [...]

“Can I bring my budgie?”

. . . and other bizarre requests made of London Cabbies Cabbies in London get to see all walks of life. In fact, you never quite know who you’ll get in the back of your cab [...]

Run for the Hills

On the night of 7th January 1928 the Embankment wall collapsed near Lambeth Bridge, right opposite the Tate. Flood water poured across the road destroying homes and forcing local residents in one of London’s most deprived [...]

Jump on a bus

One of my favourite London films is Brannigan, starring John Wayne as a Chicago detective. It is as if Visit London had commissioned Paul Greengrass to direct a travel documentary aimed at American tourists. [...]

Manners maketh man

ondon’s cabbies, it would seem, have the undeserved reputation of being self opinionated and lacking manners. Driving all day on London’s roads it can hardly be surprising that common courtesies are not always observed; many times [...]

Blue is the new green

I have been driving down the Embankment watching as the soft incandescent lights strung between lampposts slowly died of age, and no one bothered to replace them. Then the wet desolated pavement alongside the Thames was reminiscent [...]

Bog standard

No matter how glum I may feel driving around London the sight of a Pimlico Plumbers’ van with their amusing number plates. W4TER, DRA1N, BOG 1 or my favourite 701LET is guaranteed to put a smile [...]

London’s Fag End

Tobacco is said to have arrived on our shores in 1586 and was first smoked at the Pied Bull in Islington, the habit proved so popular that only 28 years later there was recorded over 7,000 [...]