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21st Century

Next steps for the India Club

India Club interior courtesy of the India Club

The much-loved India Club at 143 Strand is facing a second planning application. The Club’s importance was recently celebrated in an on-site exhibition organised by The National Trust, ‘A Home Away From Home’. Yadgar Marker who currently runs The India Club tells Strandlines: ‘Westminster Council are currently accepting comments from the public and they especially…

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Pedestrianising the Strand south of Aldwych

Cherry blossom

A new public consultation, initiated by the City of Westminster, is currently  exploring the feasibility of pedestrianising the Strand south of Aldwych. The project, if approved, would create a new public space linking King’s College London, Somerset House and the historic church of St Mary le Strand, currently islanded in a sea of often slow moving traffic. It…

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The Future’s Yellow?

The new outdoor gym in the Embankment Gardens

Walking through Embankment Gardens at the end of January, I was half hopeful of seeing signs of the crocuses under the plane tree near the tube station: they normally appear as an early sign of spring. But lo, no crocus! An outdoor gym has sprung up instead. Meanwhile, remarkably early, at the other end of the…

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“In the Bush… in the Strand”

Isn’t it suggestive? Just the very name makes one wish to know more. Why was a house named like that in central London, in the midst of the Strand? Perhaps a Mr. Bush ordered it built? Perhaps, mysteriously, there is a link to the nearby Australia House… That would be fascinating! When I was studying…

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The Strand is ready for Christmas

The 2018 Christmas tree at Somerset House

The Strand is ready for Christmas: thanks to the Northbank Association, strung with stars to brighten the cold skies. Looking along the street, however, is a less starry affair. A theme emerges, of the housed and the unhoused, picked up in the big window display of Coutts Bank, where paper houses press home the point…

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Strandlions

Es Devlin’s Poetic Lion, by Clare Brant

The 2018 London Design Biennale had as its theme ‘Emotional States’. From Argentina to Vietnam, a large group of countries presented ideas, constructions and installations interpreting that theme, mostly in material forms. One distinct work, sponsored by Google Arts & Culture, was Es Devlin’s poetry-roaring lion, installed alongside…

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Petrolheads and airheads

The future has come to the Strand, in the form of a beautiful machine – the Bloodhound. Currently filling the front window of Coutts Bank with its pointy-nosed enquiry into what sort of world might make use of it, this gleaming blur of potential encapsulates an ambition: to reach a speed of 1,000 mph and…

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