The History of London is one of the most googled topics in the world and sits next to Berlin, Istanbul, Athens, Prague and Varanasi. If you are a long-term resident, you may be familiar with most famous historical sites. But have you unknowingly walked past the unusual ones? Our estate agent London breaks it down for you.
The Eisenhower Centre near Goodge Street tube stop
Tottenham Court Road was a dangerous place to be in during WWII. To protect against military assault, secret deep-level shelters were built at eight tube stops. The shelters had bunks, kitchens, bathrooms and medical facilities for thousands of people seeking refuge from D-Day invasion. The one across Goodge Street tube stop was commanded by Dwight Eisenhower and exists today as the Eisenhower Centre.
People exploring properties to rent in Covent Garden, Soho or Fitzrovia may make a stop at Caffè Nero, also on Tottenham Court Road but be blissfully unaware of its tragic past. When V2 rockets rained down on a dark Sunday back in 1945, they raised this area and surrounding buildings to the ground and killed hundreds of people. The barren trees to the café’s right serve as stark reminder of the horrors of war.
The wild garden on Redcross Way is a memorial to post-medieval outcasts for whom the site served as a burial ground. It started life as a burial site for prostitutes and later as a cemetery for paupers. An excavation in 1992 discovered 148 graves dating back to 1800, with most corpses and bones belonging to women aged 36 years or older. After a local group campaigned for the establishment of a permanent memorial garden, people began decorating the site’s gates with ribbons, flowers, messages and tokens.
Macklin Memorial, St. Paul’s Church, Covent Garden
Irish actor Charles Macklin (1690-1797), most famous for playing Shylock in The Merchant of Venice, and who lived to 106, gained notoriety after killing a fellow actor over a trivial argument by stabbing him in the eye. Though pronounced guilty of manslaughter, Macklin was not put behind bars. His memorial in the churchyard of St. Paul’s Church depicts his heinous deed, with the plaque showing a dagger piercing the eye of a theatrical mask.
London’s history is incredible, take the time to explore the areas and if you are looking to buy or rent, our estate agent London experts will take you through your options and the right location for you. Call Greater London Properties today on 0207 7344 062.