A Queen Anne house, situated on the south bank of the Thames between the Globe Theatre and Tate Modern, which has a plaque on the wall declaring that both Christopher Wren and Katherine of Aragon lived in it (not simultaneously). Both assertions are false. The plaque is of unknown date. The house is a private residence.
From 1940 - 1946, 64 Baker Street was the world headquarters of the Special Operations Executive, SOE, a clandestine organisation ordered to be set up by Churchill with the instruction to 'set Europe ablaze' by helping local resistance movements and conducting espionage and sabotage in enemy-held territories. A plaque was unveiled on the building in May 2010 by Margaret Jackson MBE, who was PA to Brigadier, later Major-General, Colin Gubbins, head of SOE from 1943 known by the initial 'M'. Margaret Jackson, herself a remarkable woman, was just 23 years old in 1940; she died in Croydon on 2 June 2013.
All Hallows by the Tower was founded in 675AD - it is the oldest church in the City of London. An arch from this original church remains and, beneath that, a fragment of Roman pavement. The church has looked after the bodies of those beheaded on nearby tower hill, including Thomas More's and, from the tower of the church, Samuel Pepys watched London burn in 1666. The founder of Pennsylvania, William Penn, was baptised here and notable weddings included those of John Quincy Adams, 6th President of the USA, and Judge Jeffries, famous for his 'bloody assizes' in the aftermath of the Battle of Sedgemoor of 1685. All Hallows survived the Great Fire, thanks to the efforts of Pepys' friend Admiral Penn, but was fairly comprehensively bombed during WW2 and rebuilt in the 1950s. A long-serving vicar of the church was 'Tubby' Clayton, founder of 'Toc H', the rest and recuperation centre for troops in Belgium during WW1.
Famously the home of Arthur Wellesley, the Duke of Wellington, victor of the Battle of Waterloo in 1815 and later politician. Lots of grand rooms, fine art and over the top treasures just by one of the busiest traffic islands in Britain. A highlight is Wellington's false teeth in a glass case - along with other memorabilia.
London's monument to the Battle of Britain is on Victoria Embankment, between Westminster Bridge and the RAF Memorial. It was unveiled by Prince Charles in 2005, cost £1.65 million and was funded entirely by public subscription. Among the donors was the Czech Republic. The monument is more than 80 feet (25 metres) long and was the brainchild of the late Bill Bond MBE, founder of the Battle of Britain Historical Society. It honours ‘the Few’, the RAF pilots who were outnumbered and who saved Britain from invasion in 1940. At its centre is a near life-size sculpture depicting airmen scrambling – running to their aircraft in order to intercept the enemy. Around the monument are the names of the Few – 2,936 airmen from fifteen nations who took part in the battle on the Allied side. Other panels show some of the other participants and contributors to the Battle of Britain and ultimate victory – including civilians.
Do not confuse this monument with the Battle of Britain Memorial in Kent. The post code is approximate.
Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red was a work of art consisting of 888,246 ceramic red poppies placed in the moat of the Tower of London, between July and November 2014 to commemorate the centenary of World War I. Each poppy represented a lost life from Britain or one of its Dominions, killed in the war. It attracted a huge number of visitors. Members of the public could purchase a poppy and part of the installation then went on tour around the UK organised by 14-18 NOW until 2018, after which it was decided to have permanent displays at IWM London and North Museums. The work was created by artist Paul Cummins and stage designer Tom Piper.
Address is IWM London.
Borough Market claims to be the oldest in London, established in 1014. It has certainly grown in the 21st century to become a riot of colour, noise and produce. It is an astonishing place, mainly selling an enormous range of fresh food - fruit, vegetables, fish, cheese, nuts - as well as nuts, speciality chocolate and drinks. At its fringes are a host of streetfood outlets, serving dishes from all over the world.
And all in the shadow of London Bridge's railway arches and Southwark Cathedral.
Found in the south-west corner of Trafalgar Square, this former police observation post is often wrongly claimed to be Britain's - or the world's - smallest police station. It was never a police station - but it is an interesting curiosity!
Established in 1753, the British Museum specialises in history, art and culture. It is one of the largest collections in the world, with millions of objects - many of which originated from the former British Empire, though many have also been found in these islands. There is an enormous area devoted to the ancient classical civilisations of the Middle East, Egypt, Greece and Rome. The British Museum is regularly the most visited attraction in Britain.
Entry is free.
Buckingham Palace is the administrative HQ of the Monarchy and has been the Monarch's official London residence since 1837. The Duke of Buckingham acquired a house on the present site in 1698, which he replaced with a new 'Buckingham House'. This was acquired by George III in 1761 as a family residence for his wife, Queen Charlotte, and their children, and extensively refurbished and modernised. George IV commissioned John Nash to turn the house into a Royal Palace. The familiar east wing, with its central balcony, was added during the reign of Queen Victoria.
Visitors can see three aspects of Buckingham Palace.
1) The State Rooms. The 19 sumptuous state rooms, where guests are received and entertained, are generally open to the public during summer months. They include paintings, porcelain and furniture from the royal collection.
2) The Queen's Gallery, which hosts a programme of changing exhibitions of artwork, mostly from the royal collection, is open most days.
3) The Royal Mews is the stables responsible for the horses that pull the royal carriages as well as where state vehicles are kept and looked after. It is open most days, but closed in December and January.
All three venues have separate entrances on Buckingham Palace Road (the road running along the left of the Palace as you face it).