Spirit of England - London

London - the Heart of England

'Maybe it's because I'm a Londoner
That I love London so
Maybe it's because I'm a Londoner
That I think of her wherever I go

I get a funny feeling inside of me
When walking up and down
Maybe it's because I'm a Londoner
That I love London Town'

                                                         Hubert Gregg

'London of Dreams'

'The Summer of 2012 - London'
Peter Crawford
©Copyright Peter Crawford 2012

The Magic of London at Night

St Jame's Park - London

the London home of the English monarchy

The Greatest Museum in the World - the British Museum
(Russell Square entrance)

The Greatest Museum in the World - the British Museum

The Elgin Marbles - Duveen Gallery - British Museum

Parthenon Horse - Duveen Gallery - British Museum

The Duveen Gallery - the Elgin Marbles
British Museum

The Duveen Gallery - the Elgin Marbles
British Museum

The Main Staircase - British Museum

The Main Staircase - British Museum

Ionic Entablature, Capital and Column - British Museum

Ionic Order - British Museum

Gilded Armorial Ceiling Decoration - Edward VII Gallery - British Museum

Thames House


Selfridges - Oxford Street 

Selfridges - Oxford Street - Main Entrance

Selfridges - Oxford Street - Clock

Selfridges - Oxford Street - at Night

Selfridges - Oxford Street - at Night


Crawford Mews - York Street - Marylebone

Crawford Mews - York Street - Marylebone

Baker Street Station

Marylebone is an affluent inner-city area of central London, located within the City of Westminster.
It is sometimes written as St. Marylebone or Mary-le-bone.
Marylebone is in an area of London that can be roughly defined as bounded by Oxford Street to the south, Marylebone Road to the north, Edgware Road to the west and Great Portland Street to the east.
A broader definition designates the historic area as Marylebone Village and encompasses neighbouring Regent's Park, Baker Street and the area immediately north of Marylebone Road, containing Marylebone Station, the original site of the Marylebone Cricket Club at Dorset Square, and the neighbourhood known as Lisson Grove to the border with St John's Wood.
Today the area is mostly residential, with many medical and dental offices, traditionally concentrated in Harley Street.

Baker Street - Marylebone

Triton Fountain - Regent's Park

Dorchester Hotel
Park Lane - Mayfair - London

The Dorchester is a luxury hotel in London, opened on 18 April 1931.
It is situated on Park Lane in Mayfair, overlooking Hyde Park.
The Dorchester was created by the famous builder Sir Robert McAlpine and the managing director of Gordon Hotels Ltd, Sir Frances Towle, who shared a vision of creating the ‘perfect hotel’: ultramodern and ultra-efficient, with all the conveniences modern technology could supply.
So, in 1929 their two companies jointly bought the Dorchester House, a large 19th-century building, and quickly had it demolished.
Sir Owen Williams & William Curtis Green were commissioned to design the new hotel, using reinforced concrete to allow the creation of large internal spaces without support pillars (Sir Robert's nickname was "Concrete Bob", due to his love for the new building material).
The construction was carried out by Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd, with the upper eight floors erected in just 10 weeks, supported on a massive three feet thick reinforced concrete deck that forms the roof of the first floor.

Dorchester Hotel
Park Lane - Mayfair - London 

Dorchester Hotel
Park Lane - Mayfair - London

Dorchester Hotel
Promanade Bar
Park Lane - Mayfair - London


The Royal Albert Hall, Albert Memorial and Kensington Gardens

Kensington Gardens, once the private gardens of Kensington Palace, is one of the Royal Parks of London, lying immediately to the west of Hyde Park.
It is shared between the City of Westminster and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, lying within western central London.
The park covers an area of 111 hectares (270 acres).

Kensington Gardens, the Albert Memorial and the Royal Albert Hall

The Albert Memorial
Kensington Gardens

The Albert Memorial is situated in Kensington Gardens, London, England, directly to the north of the Royal Albert Hall.
It was commissioned by Queen Victoria in memory of her beloved husband, Prince Albert who died of typhoid in 1861.
The memorial was designed by Sir George Gilbert Scott in the Gothic Revival style. Opened in July 1872 by Queen Victoria, with the statue of Albert ceremonially "seated" in 1875, the memorial consists of an ornate canopy or pavilion, in the style of a Gothic ciborium over the high altar of a church, containing a statue of the prince facing south. The memorial is 176 feet (54 m) tall, took over ten years to complete, and cost £120,000 (the equivalent of about £10,000,000 in 2010).
The cost was met by public subscription.

Ornamental Railings - Albert Memorial - Kensington Gardens

By the late 1990s the Memorial had fallen into a state of some decay.
A thorough restoration was carried out, which included cleaning, repainting and re-gilding the entire monument as well as carrying out structural repairs.
In the process the cross on top of the monument, which had been put on sideways during an earlier restoration attempt, was returned to its correct position.
The centrepiece of the Memorial is a seated figure of Prince Albert.
Following restoration, this is now covered in gold leaf.
For eighty years the statue had been covered in black paint.
Various theories had existed that it was deliberately blackened during World War I to prevent it becoming a target for Zeppelin bombing raids or domestic anti-German sentiment, however, English Heritage's research prior to the restoration suggests that the black coating pre-dates 1914 and may have been a response to atmospheric pollution that had destroyed the original gold leaf surface.
Further restoration work, including re-pointing the steps surrounding the memorial, commenced in the summer of 2006.
There is no public access within the memorial's ornate surrounding fence.

Allegory of Asia - Albert Memorial
Kensington Gardens
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2008

The sculptor Henry Hugh Armstead coordinated this massive effort among many artists of the Royal Academy, including Thomas Thornycroft (carved the "Commerce" group), Patrick MacDowell (carved the "Europe" group, his last major work), John Bell (carved the "America" group), John Henry Foley (carved the "Asia" group and started the statue of Albert), William Theed (carved the "Africa" group), William Calder Marshall, James Redfern (carved the four Christian and four moral virtues including Fortitude), John Lawlor (carved the "Engineering" group) and Henry Weekes (carved the "Manufactures" group).
The Scottish sculptor William Calder Marshall carved the "Agriculture" group.
The figure of Albert himself, although started by Foley, was completed by Thomas Brock, in what was Brock's first major work.

A Rainy Day in Kensington Gardens - London
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2008

Peter in the Rain - Kensington Gardens
Statue by Sir George Frampton - 1912
© Copyright Peter Crawford 2008

Take a gentle stroll through Kensington Gardens on a soft, sunny summer afternoon.
As you walk away from the glittering gold of the neo-gothic spires of the Albert Memorial, down the avenue of tall trees to the Watts statue of 'Physical Energy', you can make a little detour towards the cool limpid waters of the Serpentine.
There, by the lake, you will find the statue of a pretty young boy who is playing on some pipes.
This statue is unique in London in that it portrays not an idealized personification of some 'virtue', or a famous historical figure, but rather a fictional character from a 'supposedly childrens' storybook.
The statue is by the eminent Victorian sculptor Sir George James Frampton, and is of Peter Pan, the eponymous hero of J M Barrie's play, (because the model for the statue was a boy called James Shaw, and not Michael Llewellyn-Davies, Barrie was very disappointed with the result, and commented, "It doesn't show the devil in Peter.").

Geological Museum - South Kensington

Façade - Science Museum
South Kensington

Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill
Main Entrance at Night
Portman Square - London

Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill
Portman Square - London

Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill
Portman Square - London

Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill
Montagu Restaurant
Portman Square - London

Hyatt Regency London - The Churchill
Portman Square - London

for more information about Peter & London see 'So Long ago, So Clear'

No comments:

Post a Comment