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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Laid out around the time of construction of Covent Garden and Lincoln’s Inn Fields, Great Queen Street, just to the North East of Covent Garden, was the third step of the quest for homogeneity that seventeenth-century London then wished to pursue. Following the same principles of houses already built in the Covent Garden area, brick…

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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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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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“This is a historic judgement today, which will have repercussions for years to come” – Leigh Day Prosecution team. The Mau Mau insurgency, also known in Britain as the ‘Emergency Period’, was an eight year span of violence in colonial Kenya (1952-60). In 2012, the British High Court of Justice, inside the Royal Courts of…

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Monet Waterloo Bridge

“I find London lovelier to paint each day” – Claude Monet. Monet’s link to London Monet fell in love with London in 1870-71, while in exile from France, during the Franco-Prussian war. After his return to France he vowed to revisit London, which he did in 1899, 1900 and 1901. In each of these three…

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Savoy 'out' sign

The Savoy hotel is a treasure trove of weird and intriguing events over the last century of Strand history. In 1896, per the Fairmont Hotel Group blog, the Duchesse de Clermont-Tonnerre was the first woman to smoke in public and did so at the Savoy. “The Duchesse de Clermont-Tonnerre, the first woman to smoke in…

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Gondola Party via AngelSmyth

In 1905, the courtyard of the Savoy hotel was flooded with four feet of water to host the party of American city planner, architect, and millionaire, George Kessler. While probably being one of the most luxurious and ludicrous events to ever occur at a London hotel, and certainly on the Strand, it is rather poorly…

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Today, I have been time travelling. I explored the farm around Trafalgar Square. I squeezed into a tiny top room in Devereaux Court to hear Isaac Newton speak. I paid a ferryman tuppence to take me to the floating coffee house on the Thames to look over the water at Somerset House. This is all…

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