Tour of Clapham


Tour of Clapham

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Wandsworth Prison

Britain’s largest – built 1851.
Oscar Wilde served first 6 months of his sentence here before moving to Reading.

Clapham Junction Station

1838 – It was signal box and then grew to be busiest in the world (not anymore).

Man on the Clapham Omnibus – Used by a judge in 19th Century because Clapham was an unremarkable place.

Barnard Road, off St Johns Road

Lavender Hill so called because there were fields of lavender here before development in the 1800s.

The name Clapham Common comes from Anglo Saxon – Clopp (Hill) Ham (Village) 100 people in 1100AD.
Village by the Hill .

Became popular after plague and fire drove people south.
By 1800s it attracted wealthier people who built nice houses.
Samuel Pepys gave it prestige.

Clapham Common

Holy Trinity Church – A group of Evangelical Christians, including William Wilburforce who worshipped at Clapham Common’s Holy Trinity Church were instrumental in the abolition of the slave trade. They led a campaign that resulted in the Slave Trade Act 1807 and the abolition of slavery itself in 1833

JK Rowling and Vivienne Westwood houses.

One of South London’s biggest green spaces.
Bandstand – Bowie was photographed here in the 1960s – built 1889 but still hardly ever used. Preserved at great expense. Silly really.

Clapham South Shelter

8 shelters were completed all over London.

Could hold 8000 people.
Then they got used by the government but opened again in 1944.
I 1948 it was used to house 200 of the first West Indian immigrants for 4 weeks until they could be housed.
Many settled in nearby Brixton where there was a labour exchange.

A mile of tunnels under there.
Still got the original signs and the beds.
Tour takes an hour and costs £38.50!

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Rather Splendid London Walks Book

In this book of 20 walks, I will show you some of the fun, interesting, weird and ridiculous things I’ve noticed on my travels around London