Hidden London


To friends who say that London is losing its secrets, I say ‘look a little more carefully.’ I’m sitting in my local NHS centre in Killick St N1, waiting for my flu jab and annual medical. It’s a modern building, simple and attractive, and I happen to look up to the top of the wall near the ceiling and see this. The inscription reads;
‘Playing Bowls On Copenhagen Fields In The reign Of George III’.

I’m pretty sure I’m the only one to even notice it, because even though it’s enormous, it’s so far above the eyeline that you wouldn’t really look there. The next street over is Copenhagen Street, where a famous cattle market was held. I’ve seen sets of tiles like this before and I’m pretty certain it comes from the entrance to a pub, because they were tiled and bowls is a leisure activity.

There’s another one tucked just inside the doorway of The Black Cap pub, Camden, depicting the witch of Camden, the Old Mother Red Cap. A few of these have been preserved around the city, but they take some finding.

One comment on “Hidden London”

  1. Andy says:

    If you like hunting for art in odd places there’s a group called the Public Catalogue Foundation that lists works that can be seen by the public in museums, libraries, police stations etc. It’s not online yet, but will be, in the meantime they’re producing catalogues.


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