Friday, 22 January 2010

Lost in Southwark

I went for a walk today to try and find a fabled hardware store that was said to be hiding just off Borough High Street.  I’d already had one failed mission and returned to my office in defeat.  When our security officer then decided to direct me through “the scenic route” I knew I had to take along my trusted Nokia N70 phone and snap some photos!

Little Dorrit Court

Little Dorrit Court

Southwark is steeped in history and the story of the writing of Little Dorrit  is linked to Charles Dickens’ visit to his father in Marshalsea prison.  All that remains of Marshalsea prison is the wall which runs along the park next to my work.  So, my walk took me along Little Dorrit Court and the colourful park there.

Little Dorrit Park Little Dorrit Park

I guess it would have to be colourful given how wonderfully grey London is for most of the year!

When I got to the end of Little Dorrit Court, I came upon the most wonderful little park.

Red Cross Garden

Red Cross Garden

It is amazing what you can discover in London if you just step away from your usual path. 

Red Cross Garden

Even in the depth of winter, the Red Cross Garden is absolutely exquisite.

Red Cross Garden Red Cross Garden

Red Cross Garden Red Cross Garden

The Red Cross Garden was founded in 1887 by Octavia Hill, a co-founder of the National Trust.  According to the Bankside Open Spaces Trust website, Octavia was an ardent social reformer and built the garden as a place for the tired inhabitants of Southwark to sit.  (Yesterday, an overworked Southwark employee simply took photos!)  She also built the houses you can see at the back as a model to how housing conditions could be improved for the working poor.

Red Cross Garden

Not surprisingly, there is a plaque dedicated to Octavia Hill at the back of the garden.

So, I finally found my way to the hardware store and then scooted back to work.

St George the Martyr Church Southwark SE1

I took the opportunity to snap a photo of the St George the Martyr Church.  That is a section of Borough High Street you can see there and it is completely full of road works as they replace the Victorian water mains.  Utter pandemonium! 

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20 comments

  1. I know this area,i used to go work in the early 80s from borough tube station,know long lane/abbey street,i used to live grange walk,my mother and sister still do...memories...love it...Chris.

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  2. Cool Chris! You don't have any photos from those days do you?

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  3. sorry,no,used to be pub next door to borough station called the hole in the wall?...still there?...Hi Emma...lol...

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  4. Roadworks everywhere now in London...lol

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  5. I also used to work for 2 companies both based in Union Street,which is not far from which photo wastaken,same side but further behind....

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  6. Cool Chris! I first walked up Union Street and actually saw Travis Perkins but I didn't realise that was the hardware store I was looking for so i turned around and went back to work. Were you working in one of the Ad companies there?

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  7. Nice site nthis.....came across it accidently,i may add more comments soon if ok...

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  8. No,united suppliers,just under the arch where the pub Nelson? was and then in the late90s/2000s tie factory close to the royal mail storage....chat soon...byeeee.

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  9. You're always welcome Chris. Byeee.

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  10. Awww,thanks Emma...x

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  11. I loved this post. Some of my husband's ancestors are from Southwark (late 18th/early 19th century) so I really enjoyed seeing a bit of it.

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  12. Neat pictures and interesting history. How is the water main replacing going? Will it be finished by 2012?

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  13. It's beautiful there. I would love to stroll through the park any day of the week. I love the houses as well. So much character.

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  14. I'm always amazed at the wonderful finds when you have/ need to take a detour or find a new place - so wonderful - lovely post Emm!
    Gena @ Thinking Aloud
    a photoblog
    South Africa

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  15. lovely post emm..AND the pics too! :-) sigh... London...!

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  16. What a serene and beautiful looking places :)
    Hopefully can visit one day!

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  17. Great pics, Emm, and thank you for some history. London looks like a beautiful place...hope to see it some day!

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  18. @ Lidian: Really? That is so interesting! Let me know if there is anything specific you'd like me to hunt down and photo.

    @ Kathy: Ugh, they managed to cut through our water on Friday and that is the first thing I have to sort out this week! It was meant ot be finished by Xmas, nevermind 2012!!!

    @ Lauren: Heh. Old England definitely has character!

    @ Gena: One of the best things about this country is you walk more and don't drive everywhere so detours are definitely possible!

    @ Ash: Thanks dear!

    @ VanillaSeven: Hi! Thanks for popping by and commenting! It really is serene!

    @ Holly: It's a pleasure! I hope you get to see it one day too.

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  19. I like the colorful park, by the way, my daughter will love it too.
    I hope I will discover a lovely place just like yours by stepping away from my usual path!! :)

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  20. @ Ellen: Well, hopefully one day I can act as a tour guide to you!

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