Where In London Can You Buy…?



…a stuffed owl?  in ‘Get Stuffed’ on Essex Road, Islington.

…unlimited lattes, fresh fruits, yoghurt, croissants, a pain au raisin and a pan au chocolate, in smart surroundings, all for a fiver? In ‘The Hub’, King’s Cross.

…a ship’s bell and an anchor? In Arthur Beale’s, of course.

…cult novels in a floating bookshop while a jazz band plays on deck? In ‘Word On The Water’ off Granary Square.

…Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland-themed items, from illustrated chess boards to Victorian top hats? In ‘Alice Through The Looking Glass’ in Cecil Court.

…yourself a beer where colonial America began? At the Mayflower pub, within sight of where the first colonists’ ship set off from.

…a spanner to tighten your monster’s neck bolts? From Hoxton Street Monster Supplies, obviously.

…a winged goat? From Viktor Wynd’s Last Tuesday Society in Hackney.

…an ancient tome on London’s magical past? In Atlantis, the occult bookshop in Museum Street.

…a Victorian toy theatre? At Pollock’s eccentric toy museum in Whitfield Street, as any fule kno.

And you think I make up all those Bryant & May eccentricities!


8 comments on “Where In London Can You Buy…?”

  1. Helen Martin says:

    (Didn’t the Mayflower go to the Netherlands before setting off for America? Just asking.)

  2. Vivienne says:

    Well most people in England think it sailed from Plymouth, but it definitely started from Rotherhithe. The church there is bursting with history and spitting distance from the pub so you can relax and take it all in.

  3. Jan says:

    I dunno about the Netherlands H but the Mayflower is the only pub in London where you can buy postage stamps.

  4. Jan says:

    There’s a tourist attraction the Pilgrim steps down at Plymouth at the place in the harbour the Mayflower set off from. Very well done tourist feature. Nearby is the spot where the Tolpuddle Martyrs returned from Australia. Sponsored and maintained by the TUC. Practically next the the Mayflower memorial. Mind you I think all but one or maybe all of the Dorset men couldn’t settle to the UK upon their return. Work wouldn’t have been exactly easy to find for those lads either so they set off for Canada.

  5. Jan says:

    Just another couple of things about Rotherhithe the original casting off point of the Pilgrims. I love Rotherhithe it’s one of the most interesting parts of London and even now in these days of mass packaged tourism it isn’t saturated with visitors although The Mayflower pub is popular with the American tourists. Not too far from from Mayflower is St. Mary’s church. This is where Christopher Jones the captain of the Mayflower is buried. The church itself is about 300 years old but the first church on the site reputedly contained Roman brickwork. Very probably a site that was sacred before Christianity but I won’t get started on that!

    At the edge of the church yard is a little watch house built for two reasons : as a base for a neighbourhood constable to patrol. (Pre Metropitan police era probably paid for by the Docks’ owners too keep an eye on pilfering and keep their workers in some sort of order.). Also to prevent body snatching Guys hospital nearby presented a ready market for cadavers!

    Another grave in the churchyard is that of Prince Lee Boo son of the King of the Island of Coorooraa in the Palas island which I think are Micronesian but would stand correcting. The East India company sponsored Prince Lee Boo’s trip to the UK where the poor soul died of small pox he was only 20. The death from smallpox was a not uncommon fate of non Europeans who came to the big European cities or became infected by contact with sailors and invaders their own lands. The East India company had good reason to be grateful to Prince Lee Boo’s dad and his people as when the East India Companies ship “Antelope” was shipwrecked on Coorooraa the people who it described as barbarous (Shorthand for non Christian) showed”no small kindness” to the sailors. The Secretary for India – a part government part East India company official – paid for this grave.

    Finally and this really tickles me. inside the church are two chairs made from wood salvaged from the “Temeraire” Turner’s painting “The Fighting Temeraire” is a picture of an actual vessel being towed to a wrecking yard close by in Rotherhithe. I think But am not 100% sure that Turner painted his picture in front of “The Angel” pub a few streets away on the waterfront. The chairs are still there still being proudly displayed. On the day I went to visit St. Mary’s there was a big Christening celebration going on a large group of African family’s having Christenings in the church. The church itself being still a big part of the social fabric of the area.

    Because of the proximity to the Docks there are Norwegian churches, Finnish churches and the church of Denmark not far away. A really fascinating part of town.

  6. Helen Martin says:

    Definitely putting Rotherhithe on my list.
    Our genealogy society meets in the basement of a Danish Lutheran church and whenever I go there I feel as if transported to Scandinavia when I look up at the white stepped gables.
    I have looked up the Mayflower voyage and see that my error was in forgetting that there were two ships, the Mayflower and the Speedwell. Mayflower waited offshore for Speedwell to arrive bearing church members from Leiden. Speedwell had finally to abandon the voyage due to leaks possibly man-made. The Mayflower was very probably scrapped at Rotherhithe.
    Thanks for all that fantastic stuff. I take it that Arthur Beale is a ship chandlery.

  7. chazza says:

    My Dad had a shop in Rotherhithe – in Lower Road – from 1948 to 1967. In winter, at night, the sky was dark green, the gas lamps still illuminated side streets, there were myriads of cobbled alleyways to explore and the whole are was like an Atkinson Grimshaw painting. Happy days!

  8. Jan says:

    Oooh Chaz that’s lovely you have said more about the place than my long old burble..

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