Brimming with tales of London's forgotten past, its strangest traditions and its most eccentric inhabitants, this book celebrates the unique, the unusual and the unknown.
Perfect for tourists, day-trippers, commuters and the millions of people who call London home, this alternative guidebook will make you look at the city in a whole new light.
Travelling through the villages and districts that make up the world's most dynamic metropolis, Christopher Winn takes us on a captivating journey around London to unearth the hidden gems of legends, firsts, inventions, adventures and birthplaces that shape the city's compelling and at times turbulent past.
See the Chelsea river views that inspired Turner and find out where London's first nude statue is. Explore London's finest country house in Charlton and unearth the secrets of the Mother of Parliaments. Discover which church steeple gave us the design of the traditional wedding cake, where the sandwich was invented and where in Bond Street you can see London's oldest artifact. Visit the house where Handel and Jimi Hendrix both lived. Climb the famous 311 steps of the Monument and fly the world's biggest Ferris wheel. Brimming with stories and snippets providing spellbinding insight into what has shaped the city, I Never Knew That About London is a beautifully illustrated gem of a book that informs and amuses in equal measure.
"Will not fail to enhance months, even years, of gentle urban exploration...Any number of morning or weekend outings can be constructed from these rich pages... the selections and observations remain unfailingly interesting." --The Guardian (UK)
I Never Knew That:
Tucked away below Clive Steps at the end of King Charles Street can be found the small underground rooms where Winston Churchill and the War Cabinet met during the air raids of the Second World War.
The first-ever Valentine Card was written from the Tower, where in 1415 the recently imprisoned Duke of Orleans composed a love poem to his wife.
The measurement of one foot comes from the length of the foot of St. Algar's statue, carved on the base of one of the columns near the entrance of St. Paul's Cathedral.
The design for the traditional wedding cake is drawn from the steeple of St. Bride's church in Fleet Street.