It’s Question Time

House of Parliament 1890. Source: Old UK photos http://www.oldukphotos.com/london_westminster.htm

By Marleen de Rooy

The UK parliamentary systems- that is the House of Commons together with the House of Lords and the sovereign- conserved many traditions over the last 700 years.

The present building was built after a catastrophic fire in 1834 destroyed most of the ancient building.  The House of Commons Chamber was rebuilt between 1945 and 1950 following the destruction of the Second World War. (more…)

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Published in: on March 20, 2011 at 6:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Wembley regeneration – More than just a stadium

By Niall McDonald

Wembley stadium was one of the most recognizable grounds in the world with its twin towers.

In 2000 it was knocked down and a new stadium built, but what is oft forgotten about is the work that went on to improve the area a a whole.

Niall McDonald looks at how Brent Council helped to change the area surrounding Wembley.

 

Video by Niall McDonald

Published in: on March 19, 2011 at 12:23 pm  Comments (2)  

What is Pancake Day?

All nice and well, pancake day, but what is it? And why do we celebrate the existence of The Pancake? Watch this package and find out!

Video was made by Marleen de Rooy

Published in: on March 17, 2011 at 2:21 pm  Comments (1)  

A “Goodenough” pancake race

By Carlos Martin Tornero

Pancake races in London flourish on the Shrove Tuesday.

On your marks, get set, go!

Also known as Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras, the eve of Ash Wednesday is devoted to eat fatty foods before the fasting of the Lent season.

Besides the pancake cooking there are popular practices like this funny sport competition that involves running and tossing the official pancake at the same time.

In London one of the oldest races takes place in All Hallows by the Tower, the ancient church in the City. (more…)

Published in: on March 13, 2011 at 2:04 pm  Leave a Comment  

1948 – The Austerity Olympics

By NiallMcDonald

All roads lead to Stratford in the next year, and WhereismyLondon are all very excited for the beginning of the Olympics!

This of course is not the first time that the Olympics were held in the UK capital. 1948 saw an amazing games take place in the Old Wembley stadium.

It was an Olympics unlike any other as the austerity after the Second World War kicked in.

Niall McDonald has been looking back at 1948, and its similarities to today.

Published in: on March 12, 2011 at 3:54 pm  Comments (1)  

A night at the opera: Madam Butterfly @the Royal Albert Hall

Madame Butterfly

By Carlos Martin Tornero

WIML attended the highly acclaimed “in-the-round” production of Puccini´s Madam Butterfly at the Royal Albert Hall, one of the most traditional venues of London.

The stage is a circular design which gives singers total freedom to interact with the audience and consequently makes them part of the performance.

First staged in 1998 and now in its fifth season at the Royal Albert Hall, this spectacular version of Madam Butterfly transform the stage into a traditional Japanese aquatic garden with 65000 litres of water. (more…)

What do you do with disused tube stations?

On whereismyLondon we have focussed a lot on the transport infrastructure, and one of the things we have looked at is disused train stations.
As we have seen, there are many disused stations, like City Road which we looked at earlier, as well as the famous Aldwych station. Over all there are over 40 stations lying disused under the ground in London.

However, entrepreneur Ajit Chambers does not want to see these underground stations go to waste. According to the Evening Standard, he has put plans together to open up the former stations as entertainment venues.

Apparently Boris Johnston has voiced his approval of the scheme, so soon we could be going underground to a nightclub or a conference centre!

The idea throws up some interesting ways of using the space, or lack of it that London has. Regeneration is such a buzz word and if Chambers’ idea takes off then it could be the start of a new craze of using Old London for newer means.

City Road disused station - photo by Niall McDonald

Niall McDonald

Published in: on February 19, 2011 at 3:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

London Bus – Interview with Mike Ashworth (Part 2)

Stories on Whereismylondon seem to be like London buses – You wait a while but two come at once!
In part two of our interview with Mike Ashworth of TFL, we go into the history of London Bus, from its inauspicious beginnings in the nineteenth century, to looking at why London buses are red!

Listen to the interview here –

Niall McDonald

Published in: on February 19, 2011 at 3:18 pm  Leave a Comment  

History of London Tube – Interview with Mike Ashworth

By Niall McDonald

Every year in London, over 1.1 billion people take the tube. Many see it as a pivotal part of their day, but do they really think about how the tube came to be there, how life was before the advent of electrical trains?

Photo by Niall McDonald

 

In the first of a two part interview, we speak to the Heritage manager of TFL, Mike Ashworth. He takes us back in time, explaining how the tube began between Baker Street and Farringdon, and how it has progressed to today’s level of being the biggest underground system in the world.

Published in: on February 19, 2011 at 3:15 pm  Leave a Comment  

Will you be my Valentine?

By Polina Vezhan

Good morning to you, valentine;
Curl your locks as I do mine.
Two before and three behind.
Good morning to you, valentine.

Valentine verse

The variety of the cards on sale today is incredible: cards for singles, for gays, sex bodies, proposal-intenders, romantic, funny cards and even DIY cards. But our ancestors were not that spoilt with an assortment. What is more, all cards have been rather written by hand.

The first written valentine is traditionally attributed to the imprisoned Charles, Duke of Orleans. (more…)

Published in: on February 14, 2011 at 6:39 pm  Comments (2)  
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