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Strands

Searching for ‘green’ around the Strand

The Northbank Bid have collaborated with Groundwork and King’s College London scientists to suggest ‘Green Walks’ around the Strand area. You can download the map with suggested loops and routes from the Northbank website. The idea is to help Londoners and tourists to avoid the most polluted streets as they travel from A to B:…

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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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‘The most interesting street in the world’

The first ever issue of the Strand Magazine was published in January 1891. Its opening sentence informs the reader: ‘The Editor of the Strand Magazine respectfully places his first number in the hands of the public’. In its inaugural issue, the magazine plays on the place of London’s Strand in the popular imagination as a…

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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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A Home Away From Home: The India Club exhibition

“This month, a new National Trust exhibition opens in London, shining a light on the rich social history of one of the city’s most fascinating community spaces: The India Club. Founded shortly after Indian independence by Krishna Menon, President Nehru and Lady Mountbatten, the India Club is perhaps better known for its close links with…

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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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Thirteen Lions

The Gunpowder Plotters meeting at the Duck and Drake, as rendered by Maz Hemming.

The work of illustrator, graphic designer and game maker Maz Hemming, Thirteen Lions is a webcomic retelling the story of the Gunpowder Plot. It’s now being published online in instalments. While the conspiracy is currently in its infancy, there’s already been a pivotal cameo for the Duck and Drake – the pub on the Strand…

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Anthony Heap’s Strand

Anthony Heap (1910-1985) kept a daily diary for nearly 57 years – from just before his 18th birthday in 1928 until 36 hours before his death in University College Hospital in October 1985. He was a Londoner who lived until 1932 with is parents in Gray’s Inn Road. Anthony attended St Clement Danes Grammar School…

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‘that Strand which is lost as Atlantis’: Arthur Machen’s memories of the Strand

Mystic, theatre critic, teller of weird tales and tramper of London’s obscurer byways and thoroughfares, Arthur Machen was also very fond of the Strand. Available through the Internet Archive (courtesy of the University of California libraries) his memoir of the 1870 and 1880s, Far Off Things (Martin & Secker, 1922) recounts ‘the first time I saw the Strand, and…

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