St Katherine's dock was built in 1827-8 by Thomas Telford and Thomas Rhodes to provide berths for ships bringing tea, rubber and marble to its warehouses. 11,000 people were displaced by its construction, the slums of "Dark Entry", "Cats Hole" and "Pillory Lane" being demolished in the process. The dock company was capitalised at 1.8 million pounds but when the dock was sold in 1968 it only raised 1.5 million. Today a daily berth for an average sized cruiser will cost £2.50 a metre (2002).
Designed by Ove Arup the 325m pedestrian bridge crosses the Thames between Bankside Power Station (Tate Modern) and St Paul's cathedral.
Nicknamed "The wobbly bridge" after "synchronous lateral excitation" occurred when it opened.
Palace of Westminster or Houses of Parliament
Designed by Sir Charles Barry, the neo-gothic palace was built between 1840 and 1888 on the site of Edward the Confessor's earlier palace that dated from the 11th century. In 1941 an incendiary bomb destroyed the House of Commons and it was rebuilt in the same style in 1950. The bell tower is often referred to as "Big Ben" actually its 13 ton bell.
Designed by Ralph Knott and begun in 1909, County Hall was opened in 1922 as the offices of the London County Council (LCC). In 1964 it was succeeded by the enlarged Greater London Council (GLC). Political control of the GLC alternated between the two main political parties and during a period of Labour control it was abolished by the opposing Conservative prime minister Margaret Thatcher in 1986. Although use of the building as a University was mooted it was sold off and is now used as flats, hotels and restaurants. City Hall has now been built as a new home for the resurrected elected London government, the Greater London Authority (GLA). Return
Designed by Julia Barfield and David Marks and opened in January 2000 the London Eye has been the instant success that eluded the project favoured by Government, the ill fated white elephant of the Millennium Dome. The wheel rises 135m (450ft) and weights 1600 tonnes. A ride gives unsurpassed views of London.
The International Brigade
A small memorial sculpture (Ian Walters) dedicated to those who made their way to Spain to fight in the Spanish civil war against Franco's forces.
Franco's nationalists had invaded from Morocco in 1936, supported by the German and Italian fascists and by 1939 had defeated the divided and often poorly armed forces of the second republic. Western governments stood by, only the Soviet Union supplying arms to the Republic. Spain remained a dictatorship until Franco's death in 1975.
IN HONOUR OF OVER 2100 MEN
"They went because their open eyes could see no other way"
Shepherd's market is a charming small square and piazza developed in 1735-46 by Edward Shepherd. Until fairly recently it was a "red light" area frequented by prostitutes.
Am The Only Running Footman"
James's and The Green Parks
"They shall grow not old,
as we that are left grow old;
return to Walking in London homepage