Visit London Blog » king’s cross station Enjoy the very best of London Thu, 24 Apr 2014 09:00:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Visiting the Past: London’s Working Horses Mon, 17 Jun 2013 15:56:45 +0000 Did you know that those small brass decorations you see adorning the walls of London’s traditional pubs once decorated the harnesses of a workforce essential to the capital’s life and economy – horses?

In the 19th and early 20th centuries horses were essential for all short distance transport in the capital. Drawing, among other things, buses and cabs, delivery vans, waste carts, fire engines, and working machinery. Horses were as much part of London as cars and lorries are today. In 1893 there were an estimated 25,000 carrying horses alone.

With a little digging, each London horse brass that survives can conjure up a lost world. The first railway companies, with their familiar London termini – Paddington, King’s Cross, Euston – owned their own horses to carry goods to and from trains. In the early 1890s, the Great Western Railway Company, for example, stabled 500 horses at Paddington.

And many visitors to Camden’s Stables Market would be intrigued to know that its buildings once housed the London and Birmingham Railway Company’s horses.

Many London companies also owned their own horses and stables, including breweries like Mortlake, Trumans, Charringtons, Cannon and Meux.

After World War I, as motor vehicles replaced horses, brasses began to decline. By the 1950s they had all but disappeared from London’s streets.

Brasses are still produced, although as souvenirs rather than for working horses. In 2011, the National Horse Brass Society produced a brass to commemorate the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton.

You can see more horse brasses in the Museum of London’s collections – and through them connect to the lost world of London’s working horses.

A guest post by Julia Hoffbrand of the Museum of London as part of our Visiting the Past series. More London history next week

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Love Camden’s Top Five Market Hidden Gems Fri, 22 Jun 2012 09:30:22 +0000 With Love Your Local Market fortnight starting this weekend, it’s the perfect time to visit your local London market. The team at Love Camden have given us their top five market hidden gems in the borough of Camden:

1)    Leather Lane

One of London’s oldest markets, Leather Lane, sells fruit, vegetables, flowers and fabric,  but what we really love is the food! Our favourite is Daddy Donkey Mexican grill’s tasty burritos. Monday to Friday

2)    Earlham Street Market

For beautiful, fresh flowers head to Earlham Street Market, off Seven Dials. Here you’ll find both exotic and local flowers on display, as well as second hand clothes, funky T-shirts and bric-a-brac. Monday to Saturday


The newest addition to the Camden street food scene, collective, is a rotating group of food vendors behind King’s Cross station. We can’t go past The Ribman and his special hot sauce without buying some! Monday to Friday

4)    Camden Farmers’ Markets

Camden has three farmers markets: Bloomsbury Farmers’ Market (Thursdays) offers loyal customers a lunch club card which gets you your sixth lunch free. Look for Les Lawrence of Christchurch Fish, who sells fresh fish from Dorset at St John’s Wood Farmers’ Market (Saturdays). Parliament Hill Farmers’ Market (Saturdays) serves up award-winning sausages from Giggly Pig Farm.

5)    Queen’s Crescent

Visiting Queen’s Crescent Market is like stepping back in time! Rumoured to be London’s oldest market, it’s still very popular with locals. One of the first Sainsbury’s stores was at number 159 and Mr Sainsbury lived above the shop.  The market sells discount everything – clothing, flowers, household items and there’s a great selection of food stalls selling international cuisine at very reasonable prices. Thursdays and Saturdays

Find out more about Camden on Love Camden’s website.

What’s your favourite market in Camden?

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Visit London Asks: Have You Visited Any Iconic Film Locations in London? Mon, 31 Jan 2011 13:00:06 +0000 With awards season in full swing, and The King’s Speech picking up an award or a nomination on what seems like a daily basis, we started thinking about other movies filmed in London.

We asked our Facebook followers which London film locations they’ve visited.

Harry Potter film locations such as King’s Cross Station (Platform 9 3/4) and Charing Cross Road (the Leaky Cauldron pub) were popular, as well as sites from romantic comedies Notting Hill (the Travel Bookshop) and Bridget Jones’s Diary (Borough Market).

We also found out that The May Fair hotel features in Matt Damon’s new film, Hereafter – catch it in cinemas now.

Check out Film London’s map for more London movie locations and let us know which ones you’ve visited in the comments below.

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