Friday, 23 November 2012

At the Drapers' Hall

Drapers' Hall set for a Livery dinner
On Tuesday 20th November, I had the pleasure of inviting the 'gentle author' of my favourite blog, Spitalfields Life, to the Drapers' Hall so that he could include it in his series on the cultural and business life of the east end of London. We were lucky enough to be shown round the Hall by the Archivist, Penny Fussell, who gave us a detailed tour of the principal rooms and artefacts and told us of their history. The 'gentle author' surprised us by bringing with him some marvellous old slide prints of the Hall dating from the early 1900s which he had obtained from the Bishopsgate Institute (which takes a splendidly enlightened attitude to sharing its treasures), and some of these have been incorporated into his article juxtaposed with colour photos of the Hall today. Some will recognise in the photos the rooms used in films like 'The King's Speech' (where it appears as parts of Buckingham Palace), but few will realise that the Hall was once the home of Thomas Cromwell, made newly infamous in Hilary Mantel's novels 'Wolf Hall' and specifically, 'Bring Up The Bodies'.

Click here to read the article.  

You can also visit the Hall on 3rd December 2012, for the Wellbeing of Women Christmas Fair

Sunday, 18 November 2012

Autumn Walks

St Catherine's Hill from  St Cross Water Meadows on a frosty November morning

Why don't we look forward to November more when it can make our favourite views look like this?
Click here for more photos

Saturday, 17 November 2012

Winchester Cycle Way

The Shared-Use Path beside the Itchen Navigation Canal
A new shared-use path has been created by Sustrans and the Hampshire and Winchester Councils along the Itchen Navigation Canal below St Catherine's Hill to join Cycle Network 23 between Alresford and Southampton. Some of the new path is built on an old railway line across Garnier Road and part of it will make use of the viaduct at Hockley.

The path has been beautifully tarmac'd and is smooth and wide, good for both cycling and walking, and it passes through lovely woods alongside the canal. Sensible instructions have been given as to how it should be shared between cyclists and pedestrians.

It's a wonderful path and should become well-used. Click here for some photos of the path under construction.