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Steve, niece Tsivia Leah, Bill & Beulah. Photo Credit: © Steve Fallon.

The View from My Window: My Old Man (Part 2)

I’m looking out the window to the street below. One of those annoying yappy dogs is dragging its owner on an exceptionally long leash. Everything about it bugs me, including its colouring (which, by the way, matches the oblivious owner’s hair). `That dog has a brown head and a black body,’ I hear a voice say. I jump and turn but see no one. But I know who is speaking.

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Selfridges Bag. Photo Credit: © Selfridges.

Yellow Bags Are Back – London’s Selfridges Department Store Reopens After Lockdown

In 1906 Harry Gordon Selfridge came to London and spent £400,000 opening up Selfridges department store. He was bored with retirement and, having risen from being a stock clerk to partner at Marshall Fields in Chicago, he was looking for a new challenge. He positioned his shop at the then unfashionable western end of Oxford Street, calculating correctly that the newly opened Central Line on the underground would bring customers to his store near Marble Arch and Hyde Park.

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Guide London Launches Virtual Tours of London

Building on the success of its live broadcast series showcasing London’s culture, history and tourist attractions, Guide London which represents the membership of the Association of Professional Tourist Guides has launched a new London Virtual Tour.

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Portrait of Jane Austen by her sister Cassandra, in watercolour and pencil. Photo Credit: © Ingrid M Wallenborg.

Jane Austen Goes To London

Although born in the Hampshire village of Steventon, the author of novels such as Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility had many reasons to visit London during her life. In fact, many of the sites Jane Austen visited served as direct inspiration for descriptions of fashionable neighbourhoods where characters such as Mrs Jennings from Sense and Sensibility live.

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Parker Drawing Office & International Garden Cities Exhibition, Letchworth © Alex Hetherington.

Letchworth Garden City & Hampstead Garden Suburb

Half an hour’s journey out of London’s King’s Cross train station on the line towards Cambridge gets you to the world’s first garden city, Letchworth. A new town designed on visionary principles 100 years ago, it is now a delightful time bubble and a showcase of the Arts and Crafts architectural style. There haven’t been many garden cities since, but Letchworth’s influence on urban planning around the world has been immense.

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Steve on the roof on Chisenhale Road, Bow, East London. Photo Credit: © Steve Fallon.

The View From My Roof: Window Currently Not Available

I would very much like to continue gazing out my window – front or back – but the views are, well, fairly restricted at the moment. Scaffolding has edged up to the top floor to the north and the south. Someone had the bright idea of using this time to have the window frames and the masonry painted, the rain-ravaged cills repaired. Oh, that was me? Ooops, never mind. With Carole King belting out at the mic, I go Up on the Roof.

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Peter Pan Monument in Kensington Gardens in London. Photo Credit: © Peter Clarke via Wikimedia Commons.

The Dark Side of Chelsea in London

It is often stated that fact is stranger than fiction, and to prove the point, many literary figures have complicated and interesting stories themselves. Let’s explore some of them on a tour of London’s Chelsea neighbourhood.

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Guide London live stream broadcast_London on Film and in Print screen shot

Guide London Successfully Launches Live Broadcast Series During COVID-19 Lockdown

Guide London has successfully launched a live broadcast series during the COVID-19 lockdown.  Streaming live via Facebook, YouTube and Twitter on Mondays, Wednesdays & Fridays at 4 pm London / 11 am New York time, the series features many of the 600+ Blue Badge Tourist Guides who are members of the Association of Professional Tourist Guides.  Topics covered include British culture, history, Monarchy, and then the lighter side of London.

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Prince Augustus Frederick, first Duke of Sussex. Photo Credit © Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Prince Harry And The Other Duke Of Sussex

Prince Harry was given the title Duke of Sussex by Her Majesty the Queen on the morning of his wedding to Meghan Markle in 2018, so she automatically became the Duchess of Sussex. They use the Sussex brand on their website sussexroyal.com but have few other connections with the county.

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Steve Fallon outside Fallon’s pub, Dysart, County Roscommon, Ireland. Photo Credit: © Steve Fallon.

The View from My Window: Still in the Still of the Night

I believe in ghosts. Not the chain-rattling, shroud-clad nebulae that float in and out of Shakespeare’s plays and Dickens’ stories. I’m referring to people who have `moved on’ but still come back for a visit, who can talk and walk with you. Souls… Spirits… Whatever we want to call them, it’s impossible to have lived in a place like Hong Kong like we did for a dozen years and not believe in them. Just impossible.

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1937 George VI Coronation Clock in Northolt,London. Photo Credit: © Steven Szymanski.

Surprising Suburbia – Northolt In Northwest London

Like all of us, I’ve found lockdown hard. As usual at the start of the year, I was preparing for the new season with info-gathering and reorientation walks, but this all came to a shuddering end in mid-March. I live in suburbia, so that’s not really much use to me as a London guide.

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The Horses Of Helios. Photo Credit: © Andy Bird via Wikimedia Commons.

Lets Go on Safari – Animal Sculptures in London

Perhaps the most obvious place to see animals in London is at London Zoo, the world’s oldest scientific zoo. But did you know you can see more creatures great and small by travelling across the capital? Next time you’re able to visit, see just how many animal sculptures and objects you can spot in this great city.

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