To welcome the arrival of the new impending year a pause to consider a few things of note such as have taken place in the preceding twelve months:
At the start of the year a very enjoyable comission for the shop at Strawberry Hill House Trust commenced. To this end some interesting time was spent in research of the history of the house. There will perhaps be more on this in greater detail for another post, however, for the time being the wonderful restoration project that has been undertaken by the Trust can be seen here www.strawberryhillhouse.org.uk
This month saw another interesting museum commission which has taken until now to complete. The Museum of the Order of St. John is in the heart of Clerkenwell and again will be the subject of another post. In the meantime it is well worth a visit, the charity dates back over nine hundred years. Entry to the museum is free although any donations are of course welcome www.museumstjohn.org.uk
Most uneventful in terms of research or any new sketches. It is though, during such quiet months that small steps of progress are to be made to the building site. Some rather lovely salvaged cast iron fireplace inserts were installed in two rooms and tested for efficiency. These inserts are quite wrong in period for the late Victorian terrace having come from an older property but nonetheless fit in rather nicely. Nine months on the associated chimneypieces are still waiting to be fitted but fortunately the fireplaces work quite adequately without ornamentation in the meantime.
Much of this month was taken up exhibiting in Clerkenwell which will be returned to another time. An April excursion a walk through town has already been illustrated in a previous post. This year Easter fell within this month and was a beautifully warm weekend during which boz dined at Butler’s Wharf with some dear friends and a wonderful view. It is likely the photograph being out of focus is due to the good quality of the company and the associated quantity of wine.
Four further exhibitions in Clerkenwell and in consequence numerous visits to the charming hostelries of the area, also to be saved for another post for another day. So a simple photograph …. also a little out of focus…. of the flower that boz associates with the month of May in a vase in the Three Kings Clerkenwell
A local event Faircharm Fair at Creekside, Deptford entailed a most pleasant walk along Deptford Creek for photographs to illustrate flyers for the event.
On Tuesday 26th July boz went on a walk Waterloo by Maplight and most excellent it was too. It would not be correct to describe the route or the details here as you may at some point wish to experience it first hand which is to be highly recommended. The walk is one of several available here londontrails.wordpress.com where you will find Ken Titmuss provides a most interesting take on a guided walk using a series of old maps to transport you through many centuries in history of your chosen area and boz is looking forward to attending another of these in the coming year.
A little local walk on a sunny afternoon where an unexpected folly was discovered near to the building site. Set within Oxleas Wood at the top of Shooters Hill is Severndroog Castle. Standing sixty three feet high the tower was built in 1784 under the direction of Lady James of Eltham as a memorial to her husband Sir William James and named to commemorate his most famous exploit in destroying a pirate stronghold on the island fortress Severn Droog on the west coast of Malaba, India in 1755. The tower is sadly in a state of disrepair and has been closed to the public since 1986. However boz was delighted to find that there is a preservation trust to undertake a restoration project of which more information can be found here: www.severndroogcastle.org.uk
More exhibiting in Clerkenwell for London Design Festival. A very enjoyable week at the Craft Central Showcase in St. John’s Square. Linen glass cloths depicting Clerkenwell proved most popular as did a new item which we were barely able to keep with demand for ….. a strange little species of bird made of reclaimed slate salvaged from the rooftops of London
An invitation to attend a meeting for London bloggers. This turned out to be a most enjoyable event both in itself, taking place in a very good hostelry in Pimlico in excellent company, and in the subsequent turn of events to which the acceptance of this invitation has led. The evening was arranged by Pete Berthoud a fully qualified City of Westminster Tour Guide who not only runs unique walking tours but writes most eminently on Discovering London which can be perused in detail here www.peterberthoud.co.uk boz is and continues to be particularly taken with the series of posts which deal with The Lost which you will find along with a wealth of London gems.
Thus the aforementioned invitation led to meeting the wonderful group of people who are members of www.londonhistorians.org run by Mike Paterson arranging regular events and a monthly meet up and taking in some rather good public houses en route. London Historians is open to all and is a most sociable and welcoming organisation and boz is extremely happy to have acquired new friendships along with a shiny beautifully illustrated membership card.
An enchanting highlight upon which to end the year was a Christmas Lights Walk perfectly orchestrated by Joanna Moncrieff also a qualified City of Westminster Walking Tour Guide and member of London Historians. Beginning in Soho across Regent Street and Oxford Street and finishing in Marylebone the walk took in some beautiful displays in unexpected locations along with Jo’s specialities providing interesting histories of London’s eating and drinking establishments. Further details for these esteemed walks are here WestminsterWalking and a lovely account of our walk on the 29th December can be found here at LondonHistorians
So our glass of something is now replete onward to 2012 and a Happy New Year to all