London seems to be a city built on, or surrounded by, water. It’s said that there’s no such thing as a dry London house, and I don’t know any city dwellers who don’t have a battle with water in some form. Our warehouse has a well in its basement, and the underground Fleet river passes beneath us. This is the second home I’ve had on an underground river – the first I wrote about in ‘The Water Room’.
The construction of Sloane Square station was complicated by the River Westbourne which ran through Hyde Park, originally crossing the Knight’s Bridge at Knightsbridge. The river is carried above the platforms in a large iron pipe suspended from girders, and is still there today.
Which brings me to today’s puzzler; what on earth is wrong with Great Portland Street tube station? Go to the far end of the Eastbound platform and you can hear roaring water. You can also see it cascading down the walls from the ceiling, corroding all the signs. Is there a river here too?