Editorial blog posts

Sensible Stillness

In 1796 Mary Wollstonecraft reflected in print on her travels in Scandinavia. One topic she addressed was quietness. She alludes to the ‘stupid stillness’ of London on a Sunday… which came to mind as I walked along the Strand on a spring morning, 17 March 2020, the day before London lock-down because of coronavirus Covid-19.…

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Protests: spring 2020

Workers, students, and anyone visiting the Strand can’t have missed the picket lines, teach outs, and rallies taking place outside the King’s and Courtauld campuses over 14 days in March. Workers from across the both universities on the Strand – including cleaners and library staff as well as teachers – were joined by students and…

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Can you volunteer for Strandlines and Layers of London?

If you’re reading this on our website, we hope that you already know that Strandlines collects and shares histories and stories of this most central of London’s streets. Why not browse some of our existing ‘strands’ to see what our contributors have preserved so far? Layers of London is a huge collaborative effort to map…

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Untitled Poem

Photograph and poem by Godelieve De Bree   *   12:26 I start, step onto the assigned street am struck by neon nails brought up to split of the lip then the orbs of sandwich in the cheeks of a crouching man, scornful of the city, he swallows. Conscious that every motion renders reality into…

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The Eleanor (Charing) Cross

The story of the Eleanor Cross begins with the death of Eleanor of Castile, wife of Edward I, on 28th of November 1290. A series of twelve crosses marked the resting places of the funerary cortège which began in Nottingham, where Eleanor died, and made stops at towns between Lincoln and Westminster Abbey. Charing Cross…

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The York Watergate

York Water Gate. London. Photograph by Mike Peel (www.mikepeel.net).

When the Duke of Buckingham ordered his York House (approximately located at present day 38 Strand) to be modernised in 1623, “it was customary for nobility to be conveyed by water” [1] while the less convenient carriages were preferred for state purposes. This made the building of private watergates by the river very common in…

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King’s College London Chapel Preservation Project

At King’s College London Archives our remit is to preserve and provide access to the material in our care. This project is an experiment in how we might apply that philosophy to digitally preserve our physical objects and spaces. The buildings of King’s have a rich history and have changed much over the years. The…

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Let’s All Go Down the Strand – For the Age of Brexit

One night half a dozen toffs met together in Westminster A severing from the continent was planned Empathy and sense were summarily banned ‘Let’s inflame irrational nationalism! It won’t hurt us when it backfires’ Decorate a bus in lies Lie some more when they ask why And then dance around the union’s funeral pyre Let’s…

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Twinings and Lloyds Intertwined

Twinings portico ©Heather Tweed

Part One Twinings has long been associated with fine teas but the company actually sprang from Tom’s Coffee House. This blog explores a little of that early history and links to Tweed family members who lie within my own ancestral tree. Walking along the Strand in 1706 a waft of aromatic coffee and stimulating chit…

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Streetkind UK on Southampton Street

‘For several years my sister always came out and gave out little care packages for people sleeping rough’, Ijlal explains, ‘but we had our first outreach in March and then it’s been once a month every month since’. It’s 2:30pm on what, for many visitors to the Strand, is a regular relaxed Sunday. However, for…

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