The London Daily Newsletter Friday 9 December

On 9 December 1990, Lech Walesa, founder of the Solidarity trade union, won a landslide election victory, becoming the first directly elected Polish leader. Walesa, born in 1943, was an electrician at the Lenin Shipyard in Gdansk when he was fired for union agitation in 1976. When protests broke out in the Gdansk shipyard over an increase in food prices in August 1980, Walesa climbed the shipyard fence and joined the thousands of workers inside. He was elected leader of the strike committee, and three days later the strikers’ demands were met. Walesa then helped coordinate other strikes in Gdansk and demanded that the Polish government allow the free formation of trade unions and the right to strike. On August 30, the government conceded to the strikers’ demands, legalizing trade unionism and granting greater freedom of religious and political expression. Millions of Polish workers and farmers came together to form unions, and Solidarity was formed as a national federation of unions, with Walesa as its chairman. Under Walesa’s charismatic leadership, the organisation grew in size and political influence, soon becoming a major threat to the authority of the Polish government. On 13 December 1981, martial law was declared in Poland, Solidarity was outlawed, and Walesa and other labor leaders were arrested. In November 1982, overwhelming public outcry forced Walesa’s release, but Solidarity remained illegal. In 1983, Walesa was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Fearing involuntary exile, he declined to travel to Norway to accept the award. Walesa continued as leader of the now-underground Solidarity movement, and he was subjected to continual monitoring and harassment by the Communist authorities. In 1988, deteriorating economic conditions led to a new wave of labour strikes across Poland, and the government was forced to negotiate with Walesa. In April 1989, Solidarity was again legalized, and its members were allowed to enter a limited number of candidates in upcoming elections. By September, a Solidarity-led government coalition was in place, with Walesa’s colleague Tadeusz Mazowiecki as premier. In 1990, Poland’s first direct presidential election was held, and Walesa won by a landslide.

Ilford
Ilford is a large suburb of east London, identified as a metropolitan centre in the London Plan.

Historically it was a small rural settlement in the ancient parish of Barking in the Becontree hundred of Essex. Ilford’s strategic position on the River Roding and the London to Colchester road made it a coaching town and the arrival of the railway in 1839 accelerated its growth. Ilford railway station was opened in 1839. It is now served by the Elizabeth line.


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TUM Dine With Me: Coach and Horses
The Coach & Horses was situated at 108 Notting Hill Gate.

Mr Drinkwater, landlord of the Coach and Horses, then ‘still a small and primitive tavern’ was prosecuted for selling spirits at the Kensington Hippodrome in the 1830s. In “Bygone Days”, Florence Gladstone added in his defence, ‘the tavern itself was reputed to be quiet and respectable, instead of being a refuge for highwaymen as of old.’ The pub closed in 1957 and has now been demolished. By 2015, the site was occupied by McDonald’s beneath Campden Hill Towers.


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The London Daily Newsletter Friday 9 December

On 9 December 1990, Lech Walesa, founder of the Solidarity trade union, won a landslide election victory, becoming the first directly elected Polish leader. Walesa, born in 1943, was an electrician at the Lenin Shipyard in Gdansk when he was fired for union agitation in 1976. When protests broke out in the Gdansk shipyard over an increase in food prices in August 1980, Walesa climbed the shipyard fence and joined the thousands of workers inside. He was elected leader of the strike committee, and three days later the strikers’ demands were met. Walesa then helped coordinate other strikes in Gdansk and demanded that the Polish government allow the free formation of trade unions and the right to strike. On August 30, the government conceded to the strikers’ demands, legalizing trade unionism and granting greater freedom of religious and political expression. Millions of Polish workers and farmers came together to form unions, and Solidarity was formed as a national federation of unions, with Walesa as its chairman. Under Walesa’s charismatic leadership, the organisation grew in size and political influence, soon becoming a major threat to the authority of the Polish government. On 13 December 1981, martial law was declared in Poland, Solidarity was outlawed, and Walesa and other labor leaders were arrested. In November 1982, overwhelming public outcry forced Walesa’s release, but Solidarity remained illegal. In 1983, Walesa was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Fearing involuntary exile, he declined to travel to Norway to accept the award. Walesa continued as leader of the now-underground Solidarity movement, and he was subjected to continual monitoring and harassment by the Communist authorities. In 1988, deteriorating economic conditions led to a new wave of labour strikes across Poland, and the government was forced to negotiate with Walesa. In April 1989, Solidarity was again legalized, and its members were allowed to enter a limited number of candidates in upcoming elections. By September, a Solidarity-led government coalition was in place, with Walesa’s colleague Tadeusz Mazowiecki as premier. In 1990, Poland’s first direct presidential election was held, and Walesa won by a landslide.

Highams Park
Highams Park is situated between Walthamstow and Chingford.

The Highams Park area was previously known as ‘The Sale’ – this name appeared on maps from 1641. Another local name was Hale End, site of the later Halex factory. The whole area lay within the manor of Hecham – meaning high home – existing already in 1066. In 1768 Anthony Bacon built Higham House (also known as Highams) to William Newton’s design. It was altered again in the 1780s. In the 1790s, the grounds, including a summer house built with stones from old London Bridge, were redesigned to include a lake fed by the River Ching. The summer house was demolished in 1831. In 1849, Highams became the property of Edward Warner. Parcels of the estate started to be sold for development but the real spur to housing was the arrival in 1873 of Highams Park railway station. This was opened to the west of the Highams estate. Immediately around the station, the land was developed. A few years later, in 1891, Edward Warner’s son, Courtenay Warner, formed Warner Estate Ltd to manage the manor house. In a piece of ‘mission creep’, the Warner Company sprung from this in 1897 with a plan to build high-quality terraces of good workmanship. The Warner Company was jointly owned by Warner Estate Ltd. and Law Land Ltd. In 1898, Law Land’s building department undertook the building development. Once built, this new area gained the name Highams Park. Within a few years, the Corporation of London had bought land around Highams to retain as public land and open space. In 1891, they acquired a further thirty acres from the estate, including the lake – purchased for £6000. This was added to Epping Forest. The Warner Company began to develop the grounds of Highams in 1897 – 24 houses were built in Montalt Road, and more in the “Warner style” were built in Chingford Lane, using the same architectural designs as Walthamstow’s Warner Estate. The Halex factory was built on Larkshall Road – a major local employer from 1897 onwards (until 1971). It produced a variety of plastic goods and the company had a virtual monopoly manufacturing table tennis balls. The factory was knocked down in the early 1970s with its site replaced by new smaller industrial buildings. A blue plaque from the ’Plastics Historical Society’ can be seen on Jubilee Avenue marking the spot of Kalex. There was a second phase of Warner development. More new roads were constructed in the early 1930s. Houses on the estate were comparatively expensive for the early 1930s – the cheapest home was £1000. Subsequently there was a lack of demand and cheaper houses were then developed in the northwest corner of the estate – this phase was known as the Montalt Estate. The curious name of The Charter Road came about because of an exchange of land between Essex County Council and Warner. Because the council refused to contribute to the road’s cost, a strip of land was retained by the Warner Company. In 1934, Sir Edward Warner sold the remaining undeveloped parts of the estate (between Montalt Road and Henry’s Avenue) to Walthamstow, with the intention to keep it as open space.


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TUM Dine With Me: The Flora
The Flora is situated on Harrow Road, W10.

The Flora was built in the 19th century from polychrome brick, and Pevsner notes its “angular window heads”. The building is also notable for the contrasting brickwork above the windows and the floral motifs incorporated into the design. The pub was known as The Flora Arms from 1881. In the nineteenth century, as The Flora Hotel, the building was the location for a number of inquests into deaths in the Queen’s Park area. Thomas Robinson Dipple was the publican for many years, from at least 1904 to 1921. Sometimes described as an “Irish” pub due to the large Irish community in the area, in the twentieth century the pub has been a favourite watering hole for supporters of the local football team Queen’s Park Rangers. In April 1893, after QPR had beaten Fulham at at Kensal Rise in the final of the West London Observer Cup, the trophy was put on show in the pub. The pub backs onto the Grand Union Canal.


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The London Daily Newsletter Thursday 8 December

On the night of 8 December 1980, Mark David Chapman murdered John Lennon, in front of Lennon’s residence, the Dakota Building, at the corner of West 72nd Street and Central Park West in Manhattan. He had a copy of The Catcher in the Rye on hand at that time. Earlier in the day, Chapman had shaken hands with Sean Lennon and secured an autograph from John Lennon. He then remained in waiting for several hours for John to return, whereupon he shot at him five times, inflicting four wounds. He was charged with second degree murder and was found competent to stand trial. It was expected that he would plead insanity; instead, he lodged a guilty plea.

Hayes and Harlington
Hayes and Harlington is a railway station in the London Borough of Hillingdon.

The station is on Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s former Great Western Main Line running out of London Paddington to the Thames Valley, Bristol, South Wales and the West Country. The line was opened on 4 June 1838, initially running to a temporary Maidenhead station to allow completion of the famous brick arch bridge over the River Thames just west of the station. The station at Hayes opened in 1868. From 1 March 1883, the station (then named Hayes) was served by District Railway services running between Mansion House and Windsor. The service was discontinued as uneconomic after 30 September 1885. Hayes is the location of the junction for the Heathrow Airport branch and is a station on Crossrail. The film ’Trains at Hayes Station’ showing trains passing through the station with stereophonic sound was filmed from the roof of the defunct Aeolian pianola factory just north of the station. The factory had been purchased by HMV when the pianola company had collapsed owing to fraud and technological obsolescence. The film is almost the first demonstration of stereophonic sound to accompany moving pictures, an invention of Alan Blumlein.


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TUM Dine With Me: Spaniards Inn
The Spaniards Inn lies in Hampstead Lane on the way from Hampstead to Highgate and on the edge of Hampstead Heath.

It is believed to have been built in 1585 on the Finchley boundary, with the tavern forming the entrance to the Bishop of London’s estate – an original boundary stone from 1755 can still be seen in the front garden. Opposite it there is a toll house built in around 1710. The Spaniards was licensed to Francis Porero, the eponymous Spaniard, in 1721. It stood at the south-west exit from Hornsey park, where a gate was marked in 1754. The building itself may be 17th century, although it has been extensively altered and refaced. It was there that the mob at the time of the Gordon Riots in 1780 was halted on its way to destroy Lord Mansfield’s house at Kenwood. It causes a notorious traffic bottleneck. It was the site of a toll and opposite the pub lies the former toll keeper’s cottage. Both the pub and the cottage are now listed buildings and so traffic has crawl between the two. These boundaries are still relevant today – the pub is in Barnet and the tollhouse is in Camden, both are now listed buildings and traffic is reduced to one lane between the two. Dick Turpin is thought to have been a regular at the Inn, as his father had been its landlord. Highwaymen frequented this area and likely used the Inn to watch the road. The Inn remains a quaint, oak panelled and atmospheric pub with one of the best pub gardens in London – originally created as pleasure gardens and capable of seating 300. A visit to its tea-gardens was described by Dickens in the Pickwick Papers.


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The London Daily Newsletter Thursday 8 December

On the night of 8 December 1980, Mark David Chapman murdered John Lennon, in front of Lennon’s residence, the Dakota Building, at the corner of West 72nd Street and Central Park West in Manhattan. He had a copy of The Catcher in the Rye on hand at that time. Earlier in the day, Chapman had shaken hands with Sean Lennon and secured an autograph from John Lennon. He then remained in waiting for several hours for John to return, whereupon he shot at him five times, inflicting four wounds. He was charged with second degree murder and was found competent to stand trial. It was expected that he would plead insanity; instead, he lodged a guilty plea.

Harringay
Harringay is a district of within the London Borough of Haringey.

Harringay is centred on an area between the New River and Duckett’s Common. Harringay’s main shopping street is Green Lanes. Towards the southern end stands the well-preserved Victorian ’Beaconsfield’ pub. A large section of the eastern side of Green Lanes is called Grand Parade. Interrupted only by the gaps introduced by the residential roads running eastwards, Grand Parade runs from just north of Harringay Green Lanes station to St Ann’s Road. The streets to the west of Green Lanes are known as the Harringay Ladder. The streets to the east are known as ’The Gardens’. Harringay railway station is situated between Finsbury Park to the south and Hornsey to the north and opened on 1 May 1885.


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A simulated flight into LCY courtesy of Google Earth Studio.

TUM Dine With Me: Ship Inn
The Ship Inn (later the Swan) stood where today’s Queen’s Gate intersects with Old Brompton Road.

It stood opposite a lane called variously Ship Lane and Sallad Lane which today roughly follows the line of Selwood Terrace and Onslow Gardens. Immediately next door was a house generally known at the Scotts Barracks, since since the early 1700s it had been full of Scottish lodgers. It had also been a pest house (a place where victims of infectious diseases were kept, sometimes forcibly).


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The London Daily Newsletter Wednesday 7 December

On 7 December 1972, Apollo 17, the sixth and last US moon mission, lifted off from Cape Canaveral. Flight Commander Eugene Cernan was the last man on the Moon. With him on the voyage of the command module America and the lunar module Challenger were Ronald Evans (command module pilot) and Harrison Schmitt (lunar module pilot). In manoeuvering Challenger to a landing at Taurus-Littrow, located on the south east edge of Mare Serenitatis, Cernan and Schmitt activated a base of operations from which they completed three highly successful excursions in a lunar rover to the nearby craters and the Taurus mountains, making the Moon their home for over three days.

Hanwell
Hanwell is the westernmost London postcode (W7).

The earliest surviving reference is 959 BCE when it was recorded as ’Hanewelle’. The original borders of the parish stretched from the River Brent at Greenford down to the River Thames. Hanwell grew between the wars and the 140 acre London County Council Hanwell cottage estate was built between 1918 and 1939. Hanwell railway station, opened in 1838, is situated on the Elizabeth Line between West Ealing and Southall.


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TUM Dine With Me: Mother Red Caps
At the main junction of Camden Town is a long-established business, once known as Mother Red Caps or Mother Damnable’s, more recently the World’s End.

The first reference to a tavern in the Camden area occurs in 1690. At that time the locality was entirely rural and the proprietors relied on trade passing by on the road from London to Hampstead and Highgate. The name Halfway House was accordingly used. It is not clear whether there was one establishment in the first half of the 18th century or two, but by 1751 the Mother Red Caps and the Mother Black Cap were both in business. By the late 18th century the Mother Red Cap was at its present location, and it had acquired a tea garden. Camden Road was later built across the grounds, and the building was reconstructed. The present building dates from 1875 and was designed by H.H. Bridgman.


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The London Daily Newsletter Wednesday 7 December

On 7 December 1972, Apollo 17, the sixth and last US moon mission, lifted off from Cape Canaveral. Flight Commander Eugene Cernan was the last man on the Moon. With him on the voyage of the command module America and the lunar module Challenger were Ronald Evans (command module pilot) and Harrison Schmitt (lunar module pilot). In manoeuvering Challenger to a landing at Taurus-Littrow, located on the south east edge of Mare Serenitatis, Cernan and Schmitt activated a base of operations from which they completed three highly successful excursions in a lunar rover to the nearby craters and the Taurus mountains, making the Moon their home for over three days.

Goodmayes
Goodmayes station was built in 1901 and forms part of the (Crossrail) Elizabeth line.

Although Goodmayes appears on maps as early as the 1770s, the area remained largely undeveloped until the end of the 19th century when suburban development took place as London expanded. Most of the area was built up between 1898 and 1910 by the developer A. C. Corbett who used new stations on the Great Eastern Railway to promote new suburbs. Goodmayes was part of the ancient parish of Barking until 1888 when it became part of the new parish of Ilford. The London Borough of Redbridge was formed in 1965 from Ilford and other areas. Actors Cardew Robinson and Sir Ian Holm were born in Goodmayes.


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Jago Hazzard went to the far reaches of the Central Line

TUM Dine With Me: Cock and Hoop
The Cock and Hoop Inn was standing on the corner of West End Lane and Fortune Green Road by 1723.

Before the 1880s, this area was known as West End. The census shows a gradual population increase in West End from 212 residents in 1801 to 563 people in 1871. Not much had changed in the intervening years. The few mansions were still occupied by wealthy tenants. Meanwhile workers’ cottages and tenements clustered round the Green with the local farmhouse, the Old Black Lion beerhouse (established 1751) and Cock & Hoop pub nearby. The three drinking establishments were still only serving to a total population of just over 500 in the 1870s. In 1896 the authorities closed the Cock and Hoop when it was discovered that the named licensee, Mr Robinson, had been dead for four years. The Cock and Hoop was pulled down and Alexandra Mansions built on its site in 1902.


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The London Daily Newsletter Friday 26 August

We can maybe date London’s Roman history to events on this date, in 55BC Julius Caesar crossed the English Channel for his invasion of Britain.

On this day in London history

1936: Over 7000 people queued to see the first high definition television pictures on sets at the Olympia Radio Show. The pictures were transmitted by the BBC from Alexandra Palace, introduced by Leslie Mitchell, their first announcer.

Banister Road, W10
Banister Road just scrapes being classed as belonging to the Queen’s Park Estate.

The rest of the W10 postal area is politically part of the City of Westminster (the Queen’s Park Estate) or the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (North Kensington and Kensal Town). Banister Road is the exception, being part of the London Borough of Brent. It was built to provide a short cut between Kilburn Lane and the then newly-constructed Chamberlayne Road.


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The London Daily Newsletter Friday 26 August

Parsifal Road, NW6
Parsifal Road runs from Finchley Road to Fortune Green Road.

The land had belonged to the Flitcroft estate and the name Parsifal Road was approved in 1883. New College was built at the eastern end in 1887. Between 1890 and 1897, 13 large detached and semi-detached houses were built in Parsifal Road.


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The Daily London Thursday 25 August 2022

You Can’t Always Get What You Wanstead
Jago Hazzard went to the far reaches of the Central Line


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