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The London Explorer Blog

Changing of the Guard Ceremony: Origins and Who’s Who.

Steeped in history, full of pomp, ancient ceremony. But have you ever wondered who all those soldiers were? Those soldiers on sentry duty at Buckingham Palace and those soldiers who march and ride during Changing of the Guard ceremony? This blog explains who’s who, where is where and how they got here.

Guildhall. City of London: Part 2

The Great Hall – from Medieval to Victorian London. Continuing our exploration of Guildhall, this post looks at the architectural history, up to the 20th century, of its original and most important building. For centuries the words ‘Guildhall’ and ‘the Great Hall’ were interchangeable. Today the Guildhall complex is made up of lots of buildings…

Brent: London Borough of Culture 2020/2021

The Mayor of London’s ‘Borough of Culture’ award aims to put culture at the heart of local communities, enabling boroughs to fund events and support local artists and performers. The first LBC was Waltham Forest in 2019 and the second is my home London borough of Brent. What is Brent? Following the hugely significant London…

King Charles I in Westminster: His life, execution and survival beyond death.

As I write this blog post we have just passed the 372nd anniversary of the execution of Charles I, outside the Palace of Whitehall in the heart of ‘royal’ Westminster. His death marked an end to what is always referred to as ‘The English Civil War’. Various English monarchs have met a bloody ending, perhaps…

The Beatles (and Hendrix and Bowie) in London: Part 2 – Mayfair.

Posh Mayfair, upmarket Mayfair, moneyed Mayfair, you get the picture; it’s nice in Mayfair. Mayfair is in the West End of central London, which is not one district but a patchwork of neighbouring areas that developed through the 17th and 18th centuries (St James’s and Soho were others). The West End formed the mainly well-to-do areas…

The Beatles in London: Part 1 – St John’s Wood

St John’s Wood is a residential, mainly well-to-do, area on the north west edge of central London. It’s fair to say that St John’s Wood is best known for two world famous locations: Lord’s Cricket Ground and Abbey Road Studios (of which more later). Like many parts of London, this area has a history stretching…

American Heritage in London: St James’s – Pt. 2

The West End of central London is not one district but a patchwork of neighbouring areas that developed through the 17th and 18th centuries (Soho and Mayfair are others). They formed the mainly well-to-do areas developing west of the ancient City of London and, you could say, were the launch pads for the suburbanisation of…

American Heritage in London: St. James’s – Pt. 1

The West End of central London is not one district but a patchwork of neighbouring areas that developed through the 17th and 18th centuries (Soho and Mayfair are others). They formed the mainly well-to-do areas developing west of the ancient City of London and, you could say, were the launch pads for the suburbanisation of…