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, That Was Me, 2007 Few people who pass by what’s left of the MV Royal Iris in Woolwich realise the important role the boat played in the cultural history of Britain and the world. The ship has been moored by the Thames Flood Barrier since 2002, seemingly left to rot. But for most of the preceding fifty years she was at the centre of cultural life in Liverpool and played an important role in the development of the Merseybeat scene and the emergence of the Beatles.Read More →
Housed in a beautiful Grade-2 listed house in historic Greenwich, the Fan Museum provides a fascinating history of the fan.Read More →
The history of Three Mills Island is the history of London. It ground the flour and distilled the gin to feed Londoners for hundreds of years. ODO has visited to learn more.Read More →
British parliamentary democracy has experienced a bit of a reputational downturn recently, but it’s still known around the world as the ‘mother of Parliaments’. One of the most iconic parts of British democracy is Prime Ministers Question Time (PMQs). PMQs is a weekly opportunity for the Leader of the Opposition, and MPs from across political parties, to directly field questions to the Prime Minister. Odd Days Out has been to investigate how you can join in before the entire thing collapses in on itself. History of PMQs Like many aspects of British Democracy, PMQs is the result of an informal precedent only very recently acquiringRead More →
ODO has been to visit two locations used in the Harry Potter films for the famous street of Diagon Alley. Or perhaps not. Both Leadenhall Market and Goodwin’s Court feature heavily in the plethora of Harry Potter walking tours around London. Yet only Leadenhall Market is actually in the film. Goodwin Court is included in the walks on an unsubstantiated theory that it was the original ‘inspiration’ behind Diagon Alley. What is Diagon Alley? For the few people who are still unaware of the Potter phenomenon, the central theme is that, unknown to most of us, there is a secret ‘otherworld’ where wizards use magic toRead 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.
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 →
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 →
Billed as “London’s first dedicated modern and contemporary art walk” the Line links a series of al fresco art pieces through a route running from the O2 in north Greenwich to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in east London. It takes its name from the Greenwich Meridian which it crosses and crisscrosses on its meandering path. Read More →