Friday, March 15, 2013
(What’s the Story) Morning Glory?
Berwick Street, Soho, London
Its nearly twenty years since Oasis released their second album, and all the nonsense of the “battle of britpop” between Blur and Oasis that the press played up. 
What I think’s interesting is how at the time of the release of this album CDs seemed about to take over the world, but now 20 years on Berwick street is still a mecca for buying vinyl in London and we’re seeing the death of the CD.
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(What’s the Story) Morning Glory?

Berwick Street, Soho, London

Its nearly twenty years since Oasis released their second album, and all the nonsense of the “battle of britpop” between Blur and Oasis that the press played up. 

What I think’s interesting is how at the time of the release of this album CDs seemed about to take over the world, but now 20 years on Berwick street is still a mecca for buying vinyl in London and we’re seeing the death of the CD.

Map

Saturday, March 9, 2013
1984, Victory Mansion - George Orwell
Langford Court, St Johns Wood, London
Perhaps most well known for being an inspiration for 1984 is Senate House Library, which George Orwell based the Ministry of Truth on, in parts because of its brooding scale and as it being home to the Ministry of Information during the war, which controlled censorship.
 Perhaps less well known is Langford Court, the inspiration for Victory Mansions, Winston Smith’s home in the book. Orwell and his wife Eileen lived at 111 Langford Court, Langford Place from April 1941 to the summer of 1942, whilst Orwell was working for the BBC.
Additional trivia - Langford Court is also in the background of the Beatles Abbey Road album cover.
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1984, Victory Mansion - George Orwell

Langford Court, St Johns Wood, London

Perhaps most well known for being an inspiration for 1984 is Senate House Library, which George Orwell based the Ministry of Truth on, in parts because of its brooding scale and as it being home to the Ministry of Information during the war, which controlled censorship.

 Perhaps less well known is Langford Court, the inspiration for Victory Mansions, Winston Smith’s home in the book. Orwell and his wife Eileen lived at 111 Langford Court, Langford Place from April 1941 to the summer of 1942, whilst Orwell was working for the BBC.

Additional trivia - Langford Court is also in the background of the Beatles Abbey Road album cover.

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The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan
Jones Street, New York, NY
Despite Tom Cruise’s best efforts in Vanilla Sky, I still love this album and its artwork. Hard to believe the leafy Jones street is the same one, that a clearly freezing Bob Dylan walked down in 1963.
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The Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan

Jones Street, New York, NY

Despite Tom Cruise’s best efforts in Vanilla Sky, I still love this album and its artwork. Hard to believe the leafy Jones street is the same one, that a clearly freezing Bob Dylan walked down in 1963.

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Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Hammershoi
Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury, London
One of my favorite painters lived briefly in 1905 on Great Russell Street near the British Museum in London, this is the view from his window that he painted. Not a great deals changed, apart from the fact that if he lived there today Vilhelm would have easy access to a Boris Bike, if he wanted to.
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Hammershoi

Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury, London

One of my favorite painters lived briefly in 1905 on Great Russell Street near the British Museum in London, this is the view from his window that he painted. Not a great deals changed, apart from the fact that if he lived there today Vilhelm would have easy access to a Boris Bike, if he wanted to.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Full Metal Jacket
Beckton, London, UK
The huge old Beckton Gas works site in East London, currently waste land and an industrial estate, was once europe’s largest gas processing plant. Its hidden fame though comes from its many on screen appearances in films such as Full Metal Jacket, 1984 and Biggles. Unfortunately none of it remains. 
But check out The Trashmen’s “Surfin bird” from Full metal jacket to see Beckton Gas works in all its pretend Vietnamese glory Video
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Full Metal Jacket

Beckton, London, UK

The huge old Beckton Gas works site in East London, currently waste land and an industrial estate, was once europe’s largest gas processing plant. Its hidden fame though comes from its many on screen appearances in films such as Full Metal Jacket, 1984 and Biggles. Unfortunately none of it remains. 

But check out The Trashmen’s “Surfin bird” from Full metal jacket to see Beckton Gas works in all its pretend Vietnamese glory Video

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Sunday, June 26, 2011
Punk’s SEX Boutique
430 Kings Road, London
Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren’s Sex Boutique. Punk of course started in the states but it flourished in the unlikely setting of Londons Kings Road. Opened in 1974 Sex boutique was one of the birth places of the punk aesthetic. Patrons included The Sex Pistols (who took their name from the shop),  Chrissie Hynde, Adam Ant and Siouxsie Sioux.
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Punk’s SEX Boutique

430 Kings Road, London

Vivienne Westwood and Malcolm McLaren’s Sex Boutique. Punk of course started in the states but it flourished in the unlikely setting of Londons Kings Road. Opened in 1974 Sex boutique was one of the birth places of the punk aesthetic. Patrons included The Sex Pistols (who took their name from the shop), Chrissie Hynde, Adam Ant and Siouxsie Sioux.

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Thursday, June 23, 2011
The Killing Of A King
Banqueting House, Whitehall, London, UK
Some areas of london, like Westminster are packed with history so much so that some of it gets forgotten, but in some cases I think deliberately so. The execution site of Charles the first being one of them. The British by nature aren’t rash, everything happens at a snails pace, we don’t have revolutions and everything always remains the status quo, but back in 1649 way before it was fashionable to be a republic and before everyone was bumping off their royal familys, everything got a bit too hot under the collar and in the process Charles the first lost his head.And this is where it happened.
There’s not much on the site to say what happened there a part from a small plaque above the door. Mostly the building and its grisly history  goes unnoticed as tourists photograph the horses on the other side of the road.
I like the fact nearly all the pictures from the time show lots of blood gushing out of the body. Apparently people payed to go up and dip their handkerchiefs in his blood. Kind of like the 17th century version of getting something from the gift shop.
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The Killing Of A King

Banqueting House, Whitehall, London, UK

Some areas of london, like Westminster are packed with history so much so that some of it gets forgotten, but in some cases I think deliberately so. The execution site of Charles the first being one of them. The British by nature aren’t rash, everything happens at a snails pace, we don’t have revolutions and everything always remains the status quo, but back in 1649 way before it was fashionable to be a republic and before everyone was bumping off their royal familys, everything got a bit too hot under the collar and in the process Charles the first lost his head.And this is where it happened.

There’s not much on the site to say what happened there a part from a small plaque above the door. Mostly the building and its grisly history  goes unnoticed as tourists photograph the horses on the other side of the road.

I like the fact nearly all the pictures from the time show lots of blood gushing out of the body. Apparently people payed to go up and dip their handkerchiefs in his blood. Kind of like the 17th century version of getting something from the gift shop.

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Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Rolling Stones, Play With Fire

St Johns Wood, London, UK

Another area I always cycle through, and when I do this song always comes into my head as its features in  the Rolling Stones early B-side “Play with fire”. St Johns Wood does have the whole rich 1960s feel to it. The song is also featured in The Darjeeling Limited.

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Tuesday, June 21, 2011
The Battle Of Stepney /  Siege of Sidney Street
Sidney Street, London, UK
Now its a quiet street in london but in 1911 Sidney Street was the site of Londons worst gun battle, involving a gang of anarchists, the police, the scots guards and Winston Churchill. Two weeks earlier a gang of anarchists tried to rob a jewelry store but were foiled by the police, they got away after shooting five policemen, killing three and seriously injuring the other two. The police tracked them down to 100 Sidney Street, resulting in a huge gun battle were the army was called in. The siege ended after the building caught fire and Winston Churchill held the fire brigade back making sure the building burnt.
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The Battle Of Stepney / Siege of Sidney Street

Sidney Street, London, UK


Now its a quiet street in london but in 1911 Sidney Street was the site of Londons worst gun battle, involving a gang of anarchists, the police, the scots guards and Winston Churchill. Two weeks earlier a gang of anarchists tried to rob a jewelry store but were foiled by the police, they got away after shooting five policemen, killing three and seriously injuring the other two. The police tracked them down to 100 Sidney Street, resulting in a huge gun battle were the army was called in. The siege ended after the building caught fire and Winston Churchill held the fire brigade back making sure the building burnt.

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The Ministry of Magic / Atonement
Great Scotland Yard, london, UK
This time a movie set. I’ve always wondered where this street is, it seems to be in loads of films, Harry Potter and Atonement just being two examples. Anyway its a small street just off whitehall, which the original “Scotland Yard” backs onto.
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The Ministry of Magic / Atonement

Great Scotland Yard, london, UK

This time a movie set. I’ve always wondered where this street is, it seems to be in loads of films, Harry Potter and Atonement just being two examples. Anyway its a small street just off whitehall, which the original “Scotland Yard” backs onto.

Map

More info

Monday, June 20, 2011
Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars
23 Heddon Street, London, UK
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Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars

23 Heddon Street, London, UK

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The Site Of The Worlds First Passenger Steam Train.
Torrington Square, london, UK
I go past this site on my bicycle on my way to work most days. Its the site of Richard Trevithick’s “Catch me who can” Steam Train. Back in 1808 Trevithick had the crazy idea of a machine that could move itself and transport people. To prove his idea he created the worlds first steam train and setup the worlds first passenger railway (all be it just going round in a circle).
It didn’t go well for Richard though, the tracks were too weak and kept breaking and public interest was poor. Upset with the results, he gave up on the idea and never designed another steam train. He died penniless in 1833.
The site
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catch_me_who_can

The Site Of The Worlds First Passenger Steam Train.

Torrington Square, london, UK

I go past this site on my bicycle on my way to work most days. Its the site of Richard Trevithick’s “Catch me who can” Steam Train. Back in 1808 Trevithick had the crazy idea of a machine that could move itself and transport people. To prove his idea he created the worlds first steam train and setup the worlds first passenger railway (all be it just going round in a circle).

It didn’t go well for Richard though, the tracks were too weak and kept breaking and public interest was poor. Upset with the results, he gave up on the idea and never designed another steam train. He died penniless in 1833.

The site

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catch_me_who_can