POST LOCKDOWN WALKS
One of the few positives of Covid is that one can enjoy Central London and the City without the crowds. So this programme of walks mainly covers areas normally too crowded to be enjoyable.  So take this opportunity to rediscover what tourists travel thousands of miles to see!

Pre-booking essential as groups limited to 6 maximum – contact Diana to book or join the email list for regular updates.
  • Walks last approx. 2hrs – 2 ½hrs.
  • Small groups – Maximum size 6 (Walks cancelled if fewer than 6).
  • Price £20, of which £1 goes to a nominated charity* (Cash on arrival preferred or BACS transfer can be arranged).
  • Pre-booking essential. Booking = commitment…sorry but it has to be that!
  • Walks go-ahead in all weather.
  • All walks led by Diana Kelsey.
  • See the Spring Programme (April – May 2021) 
  • *2021 Donations to to FareShare – who take good quality surplus food and get it to front line charities and community groups. Charity No. 1100051.


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PRIVATE GROUPS (April 9  – May 21)

I would be delighted to do private groups – with my following provisos:

  • Masks at the discretion of the group.
  • Group organiser must collect contact details of participants and undertake to adhere to the Track and Trace requirements.
  • £150 per group. Group organiser to pre-pay by bank transfer to confirm the booking.
  • Group maximum 6 (including group leader)

Do not hesitate to contact me to discuss – DiaKelsey3@aol.com or 07973 316 102

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Friday 9 April

COVENT GARDEN AND SEVEN DIALS  ***New***

Situated between the dual centres of medieval London – the City and Westminster – the area was originally the ‘convent garden’ producing fruit and vegetables for Westminster Abbey.  It is an area with a roller-coaster history of rags to riches, back to rags, and now to riches again. The most fashionable place to live in 17c. London, it became the aristocracy’s red-light district during the18c., then a slum in the 19c, saved in the 20c from the post war concrete revolution by its residents to finally become the vibrant area we know today.  Whilst the walk will cover the whole history of the area, there will be an emphasis on the most entertaining period in its history….the 18c where the antics of the aristocracy would make tabloid headlines even today.  Discover what ‘le Vice Anglais’ was, what went on in a ‘Molly House’, or why ‘Harris’s List’ proved so popular.  Not for the prudish!

STARTS 10.30 am – Embankment tube – Villiers St. exit

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Sunday 11 April

COVENT GARDEN AND SEVEN DIALS    ***New*** (Repeat of Friday’s walk)

Situated between the dual centres of medieval London – the City and Westminster – the area was originally the ‘convent garden’ producing fruit and vegetables for Westminster Abbey.  It is an area with a roller-coaster history of rags to riches, back to rags, and now to riches again. The most fashionable place to live in 17c. London, it became the aristocracy’s red-light district during the18c., then a slum in the 19c, saved in the 20c from the post war concrete revolution by its residents to finally become the vibrant area we know today.  Whilst the walk will cover the whole history of the area, there will be an emphasis on the most entertaining period in its history….the 18c where the antics of the aristocracy would make tabloid headlines even today.  Discover what ‘le Vice Anglais’ was, what went on in a ‘Molly House’, or why ‘Harris’s List’ proved so popular.  Not for the prudish!

STARTS 2.00pm – Embankment tube – Villiers St. exit

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Sunday 18 April

WESTMINSTER + MILLBANK – POWER AND POVERTY  ***New***

An opportunity to take a walk round Britain’s seat of power, normally too crowded to be enjoyable.  With this walk I aim to get you to look with fresh eyes at familiar buildings. Have you ever noticed the ‘grey-hounds’ sliding down the buttresses of Westminster Abbey, or the 2 antagonists of the Civil war, Charles I and Cromwell forced to face it out across a busy street, or seen the ruined remains of the medieval royal Palace of Westminster?  The walk will then go along some of the best preserved early 18c back streets to Millbank, which until the early 20c was the site of a notorious penitentiary and slum.  On the foundations of the demolished penitentiary (still visible) the newly founded LCC built in 1902 a housing estate in Arts and Crafts style, sister to the now fashionable Arnold Circus in Shoreditch. We will then walk back along the river enjoying the riverside views to return to Westminster. 

STARTS 2.00pm – Westminster tube – exit 1 Westminster Pier/Riverside

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Tuesday 20 April

WESTMINSTER + MILLBANK – POWER AND POVERTY  ***New*** (repeat of Sunday’s walk)

An opportunity to take a walk round Britain’s seat of power, normally too crowded to be enjoyable.  With this walk I aim to get you to look with fresh eyes at familiar buildings. Have you ever noticed the ‘grey-hounds’ sliding down the buttresses of Westminster Abbey, or the 2 antagonists of the Civil war, Charles I and Cromwell forced to face it out across a busy street, or seen the ruined remains of the medieval royal Palace of Westminster?  The walk will then go along some of the best preserved early 18c back streets to Millbank, which until the early 20c was the site of a notorious penitentiary and slum.  On the foundations of the demolished penitentiary (still visible) the newly founded LCC built in 1902 a housing estate in Arts and Crafts style, sister to the now fashionable Arnold Circus in Shoreditch. We will then walk back along the river enjoying the riverside views to return to Westminster. 

STARTS 10.30am – Westminster tube – exit 1 Westminster Pier/Riverside

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Friday 23 April

IN SEARCH OF SHAKESPEARE – BLACKFRIARS TO THE GLOBE

A walk to celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday and St George’s Day (prematurely!).  The walk starts in Blackfriars, weaving through the narrow streets  where Shakespeare lived and ran a playhouse towards the end of his life.  We will then cross the Millennium Bridge (great views!) to Bankside.  The red-light district of Elizabethan London, it was home to theatres, taverns, cock-fighting, bull and bear-baiting, a notorious prison, and the ‘oldest profession’ plying their trade…an area rich with stories.  Not surprising then that the greatest observer of the human condition – Shakespeare – chose to rebuild his Playhouse there, renaming it ‘the Globe’. We will hopefully have this normally over-crowded area mainly to ourselves as we walk along the river and backstreets.  The walk will finish in the court-yard of one of London’s oldest Inns – appropriately ‘the George Inn’ Borough High St.

STARTS 2.00pm – Blackfriars Tube (Main exit on N.side of Bridge)

Ends – George Inn Borough High St.  NB – Borough market will be open for those interested

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Sunday 25 April

IN SEARCH OF SHAKESPEARE – BLACKFRIARS TO THE GLOBE (Repeat of Saturday’s walk)

A walk to celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday and St George’s Day.(belatedly!)  The walk starts in Blackfriars, weaving through the narrow streets  where Shakespeare lived and ran a playhouse towards the end of his life.  We will then cross the Millennium Bridge (great views!) to Bankside.  The red-light district of Elizabethan London, it was home to theatres, taverns, cock-fighting, bull and bear-baiting, a notorious prison, and the ‘oldest profession’ plying their trade…an area rich with stories.  Not surprising then that the greatest observer of the human condition – Shakespeare – chose to rebuild his Playhouse there, renaming it ‘the Globe’. We will hopefully have this normally over-crowded area mainly to ourselves as we walk along the river and backstreets.  The walk will finish in the court-yard of one of London’s oldest Inns – appropriately ‘the George Inn’ Borough High St.

STARTS 2.00pm – Blackfriars Tube (Main exit on N.side of Bridge)

Ends  George Inn (Borough High St.)

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Sunday 9 May

THE BLITZ AND ITS EFFECT ON THE CITY EIGHTY YEARS ON

Eighty years ago the worst devastation to hit London since the Great Fire of 1666 started – the destructive raids of the London Blitz. These devastating raids, which  occurred most nights until the night of 10 May 1941, destroyed almost as much of the City of London as had been destroyed in the Great Fire. Whilst this walk will concentrate on the events, characters, and human stories of those terrifying months of the winter of 1940/41, I will show you exact places where the bombs were dropped and show many pictures to illustrate the walk.  I will also put these events in a contemporary context by showing how the effect of the Blitz is still influencing London today.

START TIME 2.00pm – Outside main entrance to Museum of London.  (Nearest tube St. Pauls, but also nr. Barbican, or Mansion House)

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Monday 10 May

THE BLITZ AND ITS EFFECT ON THE CITY EIGHTY YEARS ON (Repeat of Sunday’s walk)

Eighty years ago the worst devastation to hit London since the Great Fire of 1666 started – the destructive raids of the London Blitz. These devastating raids, which  occurred most nights until the night of 10 May 1941, destroyed almost as much of the City of London as had been destroyed in the Great Fire. Whilst this walk will concentrate on the events, characters, and human stories of those terrifying months of the winter of 1940/41, I will show you exact places where the bombs were dropped and show many pictures to illustrate the walk.  I will also put these events in a contemporary context by showing how the effect of the Blitz is still influencing London today.

STARTS 10.30am – Outside main entrance to Museum of London.  (Nearest tube St. Pauls, but also nr. Barbican, or Mansion House)

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****PLEASE NOTE****

I PLAN TO BE TRAVELLING MAY AND JUNE, SO MY PROGRAMME OF WALKS WILL RESTART IN JULY.

BUT I AM STILL AVAILABLE SOME DATES IN MAY AND JUNE FOR PRIVATE GROUPS.

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