Tuesday 28th June – 25th meeting of 2016
Today we stayed true to our routes, a walk in London. We met at Cannon Street and walked to Bank underground for Central Line to Chancery Lane to meet the guide for a walk from the ‘London Walks’ white brochure, ‘Secret London’.
A group of about 30 met with Kim our guide who took us to the quite Staple Inn Courtyard to give us an outline of the walk. She gave a brief history of this part of London. She was a very good guide, very clearly spoken, interesting stories and a friendly warm manner. From here we waved our way through the streets, alleys, courtyards and back streets.
A few of the fascinating places we stopped included Hatton Garden where we saw the Hatton Garden Safe Deposit Company 88-90 Hatton Garden. This building was where over Easter 2015 four retired criminals drilled through the underground vaults and stole up to £200 millions of jewels and valuables that were stored in safe deposits boxes. Great to see where this daring action took place!
We went into Waterhouse Square a really grand amazing courtyard and buildings built 1985-1901 by Alfred Waterhouse for Prudential Assurance. It is of red brick and terracotta brick and now is Grade 11 listed. A fabulous building very ornate and spectacular to see. It has been added to and changed over the years but still holds its amazing appearance. I really liked being here.
We were taken into St Etheldreda’s Church in Ely Place. This is the oldest Catholic church in England. The stain glass windows were beautiful. We had a welcomed sit down here and Kim told us the history of this old historic church.
This was a really good walk made very interesting by our guide Kim. We went through some lovely little alleys and squares including Dr Johnson’s House where the first dictionary was compiled, The Old Mitre public house and places and stories of Charles Dickens. Parts of London off the main busy noisy streets that are so quite and peaceful. All in all we really enjoyed this part of Secret London as many of the places visited were new to us!
A little tired we made our way back home on underground and overground trains for a well earned cup of tea and rest!!