Victorian

Goodbye, Alexandra Palace

A huge fire ravaged Alexandra Palace in Muswell Hill, London on 9th June, 1873 – just 16 days after it had opened, on Queen Victoria’s birthday, as ‘the People’s Palace’. A single burning ember is thought to have caused the blaze. 125 firefighters, in horse-drawn and steam-powered fire engines, had to climb 7 miles uphill, […]

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A huge fire ravaged Alexandra Palace in Muswell Hill, London on 9th June, 1873 – just 16 days after it had opened, on Queen Victoria’s birthday, as ‘the People’s Palace’. A single burning ember is thought to have caused the blaze. 125 firefighters, in horse-drawn and steam-powered fire engines, had to climb 7 miles uphill,

It’s Fun To Found The YMCA

George Williams, 22, created the Young Men’s Christian Association to provide somewhere for London’s young men to escape the vices and stress of rapid urbanization (translation: get yourself clean, hang out with all the boys). The group’s first meeting was above a draper’s shop in St Paul’s on 6th June, 1844. The mission aligned perfectly

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George Williams, 22, created the Young Men’s Christian Association to provide somewhere for London’s young men to escape the vices and stress of rapid urbanization (translation: get yourself clean, hang out with all the boys). The group’s first meeting was above a draper’s shop in St Paul’s on 6th June, 1844. The mission aligned perfectly

The Original Sad Clown

Joseph Grimaldi, the most famous clown in Britain, made his final appearance at Sadler’s Wells Theatre on 17th March, 1829 – the very venue where he’d made his stage debut as a toddler in his father’s variety act. He was 48. Crippled with rheumatism, he told his adoring audience: “It is four years since I

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Joseph Grimaldi, the most famous clown in Britain, made his final appearance at Sadler’s Wells Theatre on 17th March, 1829 – the very venue where he’d made his stage debut as a toddler in his father’s variety act. He was 48. Crippled with rheumatism, he told his adoring audience: “It is four years since I

Britain Goes To School

The 1870 Education Act was the first to deal specifically with the provision of British schools. Speaking in the House of Commons, William Edward Forster MP proposed: “I believe that the country demands from us that we should… cover the country with good schools, and get parents to send their children to those schools.” But

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The 1870 Education Act was the first to deal specifically with the provision of British schools. Speaking in the House of Commons, William Edward Forster MP proposed: “I believe that the country demands from us that we should… cover the country with good schools, and get parents to send their children to those schools.” But

The Urinary Leash

The first women’s public toilets in London opened on Bedford St on 11th February, 1852 – attempting to capitalize on the success of George Jennings’ ‘monkey closets’, used by over 800,000 visitors to the 1851 Great Exhibition. Unfortunately, even though the facility had been fought for by campaigning women’s sanitary organizations, middle and upper class

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The first women’s public toilets in London opened on Bedford St on 11th February, 1852 – attempting to capitalize on the success of George Jennings’ ‘monkey closets’, used by over 800,000 visitors to the 1851 Great Exhibition. Unfortunately, even though the facility had been fought for by campaigning women’s sanitary organizations, middle and upper class

Soundtracking the Royal Wedding

Walking down the aisle to Wagner’s ‘Here Comes The Bride’ and departing to Mendelssohn’s ‘The Wedding March’ remains a popular choice at wedding ceremonies – a precedent established by the Princess Royal Victoria and Prince Frederick of Prussia, who married at St James’s Palace on 25th January, 1858. Unfortunately for Mendelssohn, he’d been dead eleven

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RETRO

Walking down the aisle to Wagner’s ‘Here Comes The Bride’ and departing to Mendelssohn’s ‘The Wedding March’ remains a popular choice at wedding ceremonies – a precedent established by the Princess Royal Victoria and Prince Frederick of Prussia, who married at St James’s Palace on 25th January, 1858. Unfortunately for Mendelssohn, he’d been dead eleven