Centre Point – Day & night

Two views of Centre Point (shrouded in sheeting of course) from a similar viewpoint in Charing Cross Road during 2016. I used different lenses for each composition. The daytime shot was taken with my rare 28-105mm hybrid Canon lens. My 40mm f2.8 lens was used for the night shot.

The ongoing works at Centre Point seem to be endless. No doubt 2017 is the year it’ll all be finished, including a new piazza along with the Crossrail station.

This is not the first time I’ve featured Centre Point. See London’s House in the Clouds.

Grosvenor Canal/River Westbourne

I love this tweet! It shows the old Grosvenor Canal at its fullest extent from the Thames to Pimlico Wharf (where Victoria Bus station today stands.)

Another waterway on show is the River Westbourne – now known as the Ranelagh Sewer. This can be seen just to the right of the Grosvenor Canal as it joins the Thames. This formerly open stretch of the Westbourne now runs under Ranelagh Gardens. There are still clues referring to the Westbourne’s old course – including the eastern boundary of the now closed Chelsea Barracks.

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The Shed lies down on South Bank

Counting Out Time, while awaiting the Doktor, I created this special opus for The Shed……

Twas was a festival of red among seas of grey, simply they should have not got rid of IT…..

One: The Shed comes to the South Bank

The Shed lies down on South Bank

The Shed arrives, bright red with IT’s four ‘Battersea’ chimneys…

Is IT an upturned table, or is IT some sort of fable?

Is IT MOMI’s second coming? One to delight thousands of movie fans?

(The near completed Shed – from Building Design)

Waterloo melody of 2013

Sharps & flats enhanced in red, that’s IT!

A success over that sixties’ brutalism…

Who loves that concrete? Not me!

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Drummonds’ drive-in

Did you know Drummonds Bank (now part of Royal; Bank of Scotland) once had Central London’s only drive-in bank? Whilst these are a common feature in the US the UK never really took up the idea.

The UK’s first ever drive-in bank was at Toxeth, Liverpool (Westminster Bank) followed by Leicester (Martin’s Bank) during 1959. Epsom (Martin’s Bank) and our own at Trafalgar Square followed in the sixties. The Leicester set-up lasted 29 years eventually coming under the control of Barclays Bank who also opened a small drive in facility at Hatton Cross, West London during 1998. This only lasted six months. Currently there’s a Metro bank drive-in at Slough.

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Leicester Square to Covent Garden – time tests

This is the third part of the Leicester Square -Covent Garden investigation – how long it takes to use the tube/walk between the two stations.

Here’s Part One: An overview Part Two: Station sightings

Covent Garden station – start of the most expensive, useless, tube journey in London!

In November 2016 I undertook some time tests to evaluate the means of either walking or taking the tube between Covent Garden and Leicester Square tube stations.

As the first part of this investigation showed, it’s considerably longer these days to take the tube especially if one has not got a ticket. Instead of a straightforward ticket purchase one is more likely to need to select the various options and scroll through station names on the ticket machine’s touch screen in order to reach the option denoting Covent Garden. It certainly invokes a penalty of at least a minute on top of any tube journey.

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64, 65 & 67 New Bond Street

The entire elevation to 64-70 New Bond Street. Source: Great Portland Estates

65 & 67 New Bond Street (in fact the entire block nos 65-72) has been razed to the ground. The block’s original facade will apparently be restored after Crossrail is finished.

67 New Bond Street. Source: Google

I did not notice No 67 had a passageway with an exquisitely decorated ceiling. (This can be seen in the centre of the picture above.) This was fronted by gates with fancy ironwork. I hardly noticed the architecture along here for I always quickly walked down Bond Street – it was just too classy for me and only recently begun taking more notice of the buildings’ design.

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The Hod

The Hod are a London based band from Italy. They’re often seen busking at places such as Oxford Street & Piccadilly Circus. These pics are from their sessions at Trafalgar Square in January & February 2017.

The Hod at Trafalgar Square 18 January 2017

Francis Petrini plays lead guitar and vocals.

Simon Buggiani is the drummer.

Marco Mendy plays bass/synth guitar/backing vocals.

Francis does his fantastic jumps.

The Hod official website

The Hod on You Tube

The Hod on Instagram

The Hod on Facebook

London’s drive thro’ basement

Few people know that one of London’s roads begins with a tunnel and ends by passing through basements/garage lots. Its very near Charing Cross and provides a useful shortcut from the Strand to the Victoria Embankment.

Its called Lower Robert Street, used mostly by taxis or trade vehicles. One can walk through it.

This quirky little road was one of several built to serve the huge 18th century Adelphi overlooking the Thames. Lower Robert Street is the sole survivor.

The street leads off York Place and below the former Caledonian Hotel before entering into Savoy Place (formerly Durham Yard.) It actually runs beneath Robert Street, which is why its known as ‘Lower.’

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The Marble Arch Wheel

The Marble Arch Observation Wheel was one of the city’s most unexpected surprises of 2015.

Yet barely anything of the wheel was mentioned by the media. Not one report on its construction or its opening it seems. The only time the wheel made the news was when it broke down.

The wheel was managed by Underbelly Events – whose website at the time also said nothing of the giant ferris.

Work began in mid July. On the 15th on-site preparation was sufficient to enable the steelwork to be erected.

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Yamaha Wardour Street

Novello House – home of Yamaha Music. 152-160 Wardour Street, London.

Novello House which is just off Oxford Street has long been a base for music since it was first built in 1906. For a few years it doubled as an enclave for the British Library before becoming a YHA Adventure store. In 2006 the music business returned and it was briefly known as Chappell’s before becoming Yamaha Music in 2007.

The classical main entrance to the store.

N for Novello’s.

Novello’s opened its first store in London’s Frith Street, Soho during 1829. It later moved to 1 Berners Street, and then on to Wardour Street. Their first building in the latter was at 2 Sheraton Street, now called Medius House. This was constructed in 1898 for the music printing department established by Alfred Novello (elder son of Vincent Novello.)

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