Deptford & Rotherhithe: ‘The Eastern Part of London’ (1852)

'Katharine Beresford; Or, The Shade and Sunshine of Woman's Life: A Romantic Story' by Hannah Maria Jones Lowndes  is a novel from 1852. Not particularly remarkable but browsing through it I noticed that some of the action takes place at the St Helena Tea Gardens, the pleasure gardens which stood on the Lower Road from ...

South London Herbs – Nicholas Culpepper (1653)

The 17th century London herbalist, astrologer and radical republican Nicholas Culpepper was the author of The Complete Herbal (1653). As well as containing lots of information about herbs and their (presumed) medicinal properties, Culpepper also records places where some plants are to be found growing, including various South London locations:Langue de Boeuf -  'It grows ...

Cradle to Grave: Danny Baker & SE London

I've really enjoyed the Cradle to Grave, the BBC comedy/drama series based on Danny Baker's memoirs of growing up in 1970s SE London (published as 'Going to Sea in a Sieve). Baker was born on the Crossfields Estate in Deptford and then lived in Silwood Estate SE16, going to Rotherhithe Primary School and then West ...

South London marches on Westminster – John Henry Mackay on the World Metropolis in 1880s

John Henry Mackay (1864-1933) was a Scottish-born, German-raised individualist anarchist. His novel, 'The Anarchists: A Picture of Civilization at the Close of the Nineteenth Century' was written in German and published in English translation by Benjamin Tucker in Boston in 1891.The novel draws on the author's time in London in 1887, and includes some great ...

Suffragette Hoax ‘Bombs’ in New Cross & Rotherhithe

From the New York Times, 17 May 1913, reports of suffragette hoax 'bomb' packages being left around London, including 'outside a coffee house at New Cross' and 'in the public library' at Rotherhithe. The 'make-believe bombs... contained such innocuous materials as cabbage leaves, soot and earth'. This was in the same month that St Catherine's ...

Osprey Estate Street Art

The mural on Southwark's Osprey Estate in Rotherhithe (on Tawny Way next to Surrey Docks pub on Lower Road SE16) was painted by Positive Arts in 2012.Also on the Estate is one of several John Lennon images stencilled around the area.

Loretto Street Art SE1/SE16

Following last week's post about Loretto street art in Peckham, here's another of their pieces spotted in Pages Walk SE1 (photo by Controlled Weirdness). Lots more examples here.This piece is on Southwark Park Road, opposite Galleywall Road junction (photo from Gemini City).

Estuary and Stevedores

I went to the Estuary exhibition at the Museum of London Docklands, featuring the 'work of 12 artists who have been inspired by the outer limits of the Thames where the river becomes the sea' with its 'dramatic landscape – desolate mudflats and saltmarshes, vast open skies, container ports, power stations and seaside resorts'. It's ...

History Corner: Jessica Mitford in Rotherhithe

The Mitford sisters became notorious in the 1930s and 1940s as aristocratic socialites who pursued widely divergent political paths. Unity and Diana both became Hitler enthusiasts, the latter marrying British Union of Fascists leader Oswald Mosley. Jessica Mitford (1917-1996) on the other hand ran away to Spain with her boyfriend Esmond Romilly to back the ...