London – City Of (Half) Light

These London pictures by Katarina Stefanović are astonishing for an unusual reason. They’ve been sensitively photoshopped in terms of light source, so that they look as London might look if it was on a geographical parallel with Paris. The very thing most tourists comment upon when they come to London for the first time – […]

Foreign Territory?

My pictures show Castle Combe and Torbay, and will be less familiar to Londoners than Americans. Let me explain. I make a big deal out of being a Londoner, but there are downsides – nobody in my family (that I’m still speaking to, after the revelations in ‘Paperboy’, anyway) lives in the countryside. My brother […]

What Makes A Londoner?

It’s one of those questions that come up on pub evenings: Are Londoners born or raised? Heredity has lost out over environment. It’s not who your parents are but how you live, and London is working proof. After a period of living here, residents quickly adopt London habits. Being able to tick any three of […]

The London That Was & Wasn’t

More on those books below – ‘London As It Might Have Been’ is an in-depth look at all of the palaces, towers, mausoleums, archways and vast ridiculous constructions architects have planned for the city over the centuries – and there have been a lot of them, idealistic, breathtaking and plain wrong. It’s a fun book […]

London Books

New books on London are hardly news; dozens are published each year. But I’m excited about Terry Farrell’s look at how cities are shaped by landscape. It should be of interest to anyone who wonders why London’s streets are so unfathomably awkward to get around. Three further volumes I’d recommend are here in my own […]

Covent Garden Turns Into Warren Street

This is the 53-foot long giant helium-filled rabbit that has appeared in Covent garden today. It’s an advertisement for the new Tate Modern show ‘Pop Life: Life In A Material World’ and is modelled on the stainless-steel Rabbit by pop artist Jeff Koons.

Coming Back To London

Summer’s end saw me selling my house in France and moving back to London. I’ll miss many things, but one of them won’t be the culture shock of arriving back in King’s Cross. On my last return I bade farewell to my happy, healthy summer pals and dressed in grey once more. I spent several […]

Where’s Georgie?

George Gordon Byron, what a lad eh? If you want to know where he’s hiding in London, or where all the ghost bikes are, head for the site that’s busy mapping all of London’s memorials – and there are a lot of them! You’ll find it here. And you’ll get more accurate information about Byron […]

London’s Bluecoats

You see them dotted about the place in London – little statues of boys in blue. But what are they? The Bluecoats are indicators of London’s charity schools and date back to the mid-sixteenth century. They wore blue uniforms because blue was the cheapest dye available. See more Bluecoats here.

London’s Most Boring Object

Amazingly it’s not Simon Cowell but this, and it turns out there’s an expression about it. ‘So long as the stone of Brutus is safe, so long shall London flourish.’ Supposedly it refers to the Trojan origin of London Stone and its mythical significance to the city. FYI, the London Stone is a block of […]