Here are some (read many) photos from this year’s Open House London event. We had a lovely tiring time as always and really enjoyed visiting houses and lesser known gems in our borough.
40a Ashburnham Grove, SE10 8UL
This four-storey house in west Greenwich has been restored by Zac Monro Architects into a lovely and spacious family home with an extension into the garden and a “double-height space” in the kitchen area. The interior is modern and light but is also cozy and feels very homey. A delight to walk around, the exteriors have been beautifully preserved and I would love to live here.
To my great disappointment this is all you see when you visit the mausoleum. Ho hum. Here I was hoping for coffins and creepy dark corners! We saw some photos of coffins though! Such a shame that going into the mausoleum would destroy all inside! Flipping micro-climates!
Bees! They keep bees!
Devonport Mausoleum, National Maritime Museum, Romney Road, SE10 9NF
These wall panels could be moved around to close and open out the first floor
The outfit I tried on was completely awful, Sam fared a little better.
Lazy people spoiling my shot
Dr Johnson’s House, 17 Gough Square, EC4A 3DE
If you are cool and hip like I you will know that Dr Samuel Johnson put together the first English dictionary in 1755. He was also a essayist, biographer and poet and he lived in this five-storey town house in the City for eleven years. 17 Gough Square was where the dictionary was compiled and today it is a museum all about the man.
The house itself is notable for being kinda old, built in 1700, but I was disappointed to not learn much about the architecture of the house when inside, all the information focused on Johnson.
This gorgeous and random building is the remains of the church of St Alban, destroyed during the Blitz in 1940. Wikipedia tells us it is now a private dwelling – awesome.
Museum of London, Roman Fort Gate, London Wall, EC2Y 5HN
The Roman Fort Gate is actually underneath the museum but I didn’t take any good shots so the four photos above are from Noble Street across the road. The wall remains on Noble Street have been built on numerous times over the centuries and even now new buildings have been built into the old walls. This interesting video shows the area we visited under the museum.
We were also allowed to stand inside the fort remains so we can now say we have stood inside a Roman Fort, very cool.
Saved from the pouring rain by a church with beautiful stained glass windows
St Vedast-Alias-Foster Church, 4 Foster Lane, EC2V 6HH
I took this whilst at Shadwell DLR station
Lovely old station with some gorgeous Victorian brickwork. We came here through Brunel’s Thames Tunnel to go to the Brunel Museum about the Thames Tunnel!
How we had to enter the Thames Tunnel shaft, AMAZING. The COOLEST thing EVER
The lovely Tim Thomas regailed us with excellent stories about the building of the tunnel and the shaft we were sitting in. This was the best thing ever, a wonderful adventure down underground
The view from the top of the scaffolding
The entrance to the shaft!
Brunel Museum, Railway Avenue, SE16 4LF
We popped into this place after the Brunel Museum, it is a restored old granary building that houses a picture library and a film studios renowned for making costumes that have won Oscars.
They are currently trying to buy the building as the rental cost of the granary has become too high, if you would like to help please visit the ‘Sands Enterprise Investment Scheme’ page on their site at the link below. Locals fear that a Starbucks or a Tesco Express will replace the library and studios, and as this is a beautiful and well-used old building I think that would be a horrible thing to happen.
Sands Film Studios and Rotherhithe Picture Research Library, 82 St Marychurch Street, SE16 4HZ
Sunday rose bright and shiny and beautiful…
My local station is so beautiful on a sunny day
Plaque at Aldgate station to commemorate lives lost during the 7/7 bombings
Built by George Dance in 1744. The church has some lovely stained glass windows but I didn’t get a good shot of them so please head to the Church’s site to see them. I love the exterior shot of the church on the homepage, the contrast of the old church and the new buildings and all the different colours in the shot is beautiful. Disappointed to see no credits for any of these photos.
St Botolph without Aldgate, Aldgate High Street, EC3N 1AB
Taken whilst walking down Bevis Marks. The tall building is so new I can’t find out what it is on Google Street View!
Sneaky interior shot. It was very interesting to find out that synagogues have seven candelabras to represent the seven days of the week, the biggest one is for Shabbat every Friday. I remember absolutely nothing about Judaism from my Keystage 3 RE lessons so it was excellent to hear Maurice Bitton the Shamash/Curator speak about the building and Judaism. He is featured in June Brown’s Who Do You Think You Are? too.
Absolutely beautiful building, wonderfully preserved. It is also hidden in a courtyard so you would never spot it if you didn’t know it was there, lovely
Quite proud of this one, light isn’t amazing but I do like a well framed photo <<< as well as you can with my crappy camera
Bevis Marks Synagogue, Bevis Marks, EC3A 5DQ
We left London after this and came back to our borough for more local delights.
Spotted this lovely building whilst walking up Charlton Church Lane (for the first time)
St Luke’s in Charlton village, the local church for Charlton House
A lovely friendly squirrel to me, a “tree rat” to my boyfriend’s Dad.
Back in the day the land owned by the house stretched as far as Woolwich Common all around the house. The views down to the river were fabulous apparently, stupid flats block the view now.
I feel quite proud that I can shout about Charlton House to my friends and family now. The fabulous architecture isn’t all in Greenwich!
I officially love Charlton House, built in 1607 for Sir Adam Newton, tutor to Henry, Prince of Wales, James I’s son, who died as a young man. I think I am safe to say that it is considered to be one of the best examples of Jacobean architecture.
It is now owned by Greenwich Council rather than English Heritage and it is used as a community centre for the local area. I think the council do a decent job of keeping the historical importance of the building alive as I thought it was a stunning building. You can get married here too! Eee!
Charlton House, Charlton Road, SE7 8RE
Office window view, nice work if you can get it!
Gorgeous painting of the ORNC at night. I can’t remember the name of the artist, can anyone help?
I walk through here a least once a week and it is just stunning every time. I am so proud of my area!
We didn’t make it back to Greenwich from Charlton in time to go on any of the ORNC tours except the Queen Anne Court one. This court is leased to the University of Greenwich and they have been using it since the 1990s.
Our guide Lizzie told us how the Navy had built a lot of small rooms within the grand spaces so the university has just pared back the rooms to how they were before the Navy used the site as a teaching facility. Whilst this is a good thing, it was not the most stunning of tours as it was quite odd to see these wide and grand open spaces painted white, carpeted and turned into boring offices with vending machines dotted around the place. I don’t think it works aesthetically but I do think it is ideal that these lovely old buildings are being using for education, what a wonderful place to study.
Queen Anne Court, Old Royal Naval College, SE10 9LW
So that is it for 2011, roll on 2012!