What To Do In London While It’s Icy
This was the view from my lounge this morning, taken on my iPhone with the excellent free Gorillacam app. For the first time I can remember, the entire Battlebridge canal has frozen. Frost has covered the roof of St Paul’s, and the city looks calm and wintry. It’s a good time to visit museums or go to the theatre. At Christmas I visited the Geffrye Museum of living rooms, which traces the history of English homes and are seasonally decorated every year.
Next I’m heading for Robert Opie’s Museum of Brands in Notting Hill, which reveals the hidden history of packaging and advertising. Opie has spent his life collecting and collating ephemera – smartly, as it turns out, because the details of social life are often more revealing (the BBC famously wiped all of its television tapes to save money and re-use them, except for the Shakespearian productions, which tell us little about the times in which they were filmed.)
Another on my list this week is the Museum in Docklands, which covers the history of the area from the Roman settlements to the docklands’ transformation in the nineties, and regularly holds special exhibitions (last year’s ‘Jack the Ripper and the East End’ was deemed a huge success).