Chislehurst Caves has been a bomb shelter and a mushroom farm, a human sacrificial chamber, a battlefield for Time Lords, and a venue for rock concerts.Read more
Well that was me, Royal Iris, on the river Mercy beat n’ with the band, that was me Paul McCartney,Read more
In the mid-19th century, London had an unpleasant problem. An event known as “The Great Stink” brought a ghastly odor to all and even death to the most unfortunate.
The heart that pumped this engineering marvel became known as “the Cathedral of Sewage,” the Crossness Pumping Station.
But necessity is the mother of invention. From this foul situation, one of London’s greatest Victorian heroes came up with an engineering solution that saved lives and still serves us today – the magnificent feat of infrastructure that is the London sewerage system.Read more
Thanks to its eponymous dessert, the Peakland town of Bakewell punches above its weight in terms of name recognition. However, it is the Bakewell Pudding that the town owes it success to – not the ‘tarted up’ variant made famous by Mr Kipling in the 1960s.
The pudding consists of a flaky pastry base covered with a layer of sieved jam and topped with a filling made of egg and almond paste. Culinary tourists still flock to Bakewell to try the local delicacy. Visitors on the hunt for this 19th century treat expect a certain archaism, which the small market town is more than happy to provide.
However, bubbling beneath its quaint exterior is a bitter dispute. Three shops, situated within 100 metres of each other, all claim that they alone have the original recipe for the Bakewell Pudding.Read more
Ancient covens, the Devil’s homemade soup and an ethereal Julius Caesar – when it comes to Sussex folklore few places have as many associated legends as Chanctonbury Ring.
Since the Bronze Age this curious earthwork has held great significance to both Sussex natives and invaders from distant lands. Risking the wrath of ancient spirits, Odd Days Out has been to investigate why, to this day, legends and rumours persist around the area.Read more
The two most important things to know about the new river are as follows: it is neither new, nor a river. It is, in fact, an aqueduct completed in 1613 built to deliver spring water from Hertfordshire to North London.
When it was originally designed, the aqueduct followed the natural features of the land, so its route twists and turns, creating a pathway through the London suburbs.Read more
Just off the A30 is a spectacular series of ancient pillars, a snapshot of the Roman conquest of north Africa – the ruins of Leptis Magna, now known as the Temple of Augustus.
Odd Days Out has been to investigate how these ancient ruins found themselves intersected by an A road in otherwise leafy Surrey.Read more
An unassuming footpath, Framfield Number Nine had no pretensions to be anything other than a simple thoroughfare.
Then, in 1989 it was abruptly blocked by a barn. The footpath then found itself at the centre of a landmark legal battle that influenced two acts of Parliament and with the help of the Ramblers, helped strengthen walkers’ rights.Read more
Nestled in the midst of Oxleas Wood (one of London’s only ancient woodlands) is a strange sight. A seemingly ancient building, complete with turrets, ramparts, arrow slits and as of 2019, a coffee shop serving cake and ice cream.Read more
We’ve all heard of King Alfred: the 9th century king who defeated the vikings and united the English. He’s a figure shrouded in mystery and romanticism and an important part of his story lies in wait in a hidden East Sussex village. Sort of.Read more