unexpected views of London landmarks #3


My self imposed week off blogging has now resulted in a bit of a back log of things & stuff for me to talk about.  Not helped by the unscheduled and completely mind blowing visit to 18 Folgate Street on Sunday (see below for my post about it).  I couldn’t not talk about that could I?  So the backlog gets even bigger.  Apologies in advance then for what may well turn into a barrage of posts over the next few days.  Not normally needing much of an excuse to leave work until later and/or another day, I can already see a frantic end to the week trying to hit my target, and my usual rule of not working at weekends having to be broken.  But enough of my domestic nonsense, let’s try and concentrate on the job in hand shall we?

The picture above is pretty self explanatory to be honest, doesn’t really require a lot explaining, which is nice.  Taken from Ebury Bridge (it’s a railway bridge in case you thought you’d missed out on a new bridge spanning the Thames) looking pretty much due south, you get a great vista that includes the mainline rail tracks heading out of Victoria, Battersea Power Station and almost unnoticed between the new development of “riverside apartments” on the right, the accumulator tower for the Pimlico Pumping Station.  Born about 200 yards from where this photo was taken, I’m finding myself more & more drawn to this part of London – must be something to do with my age I guess.  Expect more whimsical musings about Pimlico in the near future.  For the moment though, just enjoy the view.


long roads in london with great views

I need to get a better camera

I need to get a better camera

Some time ago, back when I was a fresh faced blogger I started a series of posts; Unexpected Views of London Landmarks, with a post about Ally Pally. In it I talked about other views of London that I came across; Long Roads In London with Great Views, but have never got around to posting any.  Maybe my imagination was playing tricks on me at the time, and none really exist out there, but the view that started off that train of thought is the one in the picture above.  But rather than start yet another series (I think Building of the week, London’s Least Used Roads, found down the back of London’s sofa, Useless London, Unexpected Views etc.. is enough to be getting on with) I thought I should at least try to show you this view, then perhaps post the occasional one when the feeling arises.  So now I can split my posts into regular series, occasional series and just plain random posts.  All of which must be fascinating reading I’m sure.

Bit of a shame then that this view isn’t shown off by a better photo.  But taking the photo from my cab using my mobile phone whilst driving whilst safely parked at the side of such a busy road isn’t easy.  And no matter that I have an 8mp camera phone, if the subject isn’t within about 5ft it still takes pretty ropey pictures.  Never mind, hopefully the photo gives you a flavour of the grand view that you get coming down Brixton Hill, with the Gherkin, Tower 42 (NatWest Tower to those of us 40+) and the City framed by a tree lined road and, er, buses.  Enjoy.

building of the week #2, 66 Venn St, SW4……

venn-street-iii….otherwise known as the Clapham Sorting Office, or originally the ‘Postmens Office’ built in 1902. (no research required for that bit of information, it says it on the building)  It’s quite a splendid Sorting Office though isn’t it?  Tucked away behind the High St, in the same street as the Clapham Picture House, it hides itself quite well and is one of those places that you just wouldn’t pass on a day to day basis.

I can’t tell you much more about the building or why it was built in such a grand fashion, even Google couldn’t help with this one, but whatever the reason, I think we should all be glad that it was built with a bit of style and panache.


And then, after finishing my little photo session, I headed off with the aim of going to north London to ‘do’ what should have been this weeks building of the week.  But 3 things happened; 1) I got distracted by the views of Battersea Power Station I display below, 2) I went off down Thessaly Road to try and find the recording studio that The Who used to own (something I’d heard about on Bob Elms or Danny Baker, can’t remember which) and 3) Whilst mooching around Thessaly Road I got offered a cash job from Dial-a-Cab going to Canary Wharf.  So I didn’t find the recording studio and I didn’t get to ‘do’ the building I’d originally planned on as building of the week.  But I hope you agree that 66 Venn Street is a more than adequate substitute, let’s call it the David Fairclough of buildings.  As akways, click on any photo for a bigger version.

lurking behind the houses in Clapham Manor St

lurking behind the houses in Clapham Manor St

showing itself in a better light from the railway bridge, Larkhall Rise

showing itself in a better light from the railway bridge, Larkhall Rise

can you take out an injunction on a building?


peeking over the back of the british library to find me

I’m asking because, now matter how hard I try to shake it off, the Post Office Tower is still stalking me.  As previously reported, I’ve got history with THE TOWER.  But I hadn’t seen it for a while, maybe it’s been on a nice winter break to Paris or a short skiing holiday.  Wherever it’s been, it’s back, back, back.  First noticed whilst tweeting from the rank at St Pancras (see above photo) it must have spotted me and then proceeded to lurk behind various buildings for the next couple of hours, occasionally showing itself to freak me out.  I’ve had enough of it, so Post Office Tower – stop farking following me.  And that London Eye had better not start anything……..


sneaky tower


freaky tower

unexpected views of London landmarks #2

London eh?  You go out thinking you’ll just take a few photos of empty streets (it’s all the rage it seems) for your own amusement.  But oh no, London just won’t let you do that will it?  That would be dull and London doesn’t like dull.  So, as I wandered around the delights of Camden enjoying the relative tranquility of a post Xmas London, this city that I love did it to me again.

Heading south down St Pancras Way I walked under this railway bridge; railway-bridge

got slightly distracted by this sign on the aforementioned railway bridge;bridge-sign1

only to look up and then see this image; slightly hazy but most definitely the Post Office Tower, lurking behind The Enterprise.  (the pub not the spaceship)


And then, just as I’d got over the shock and was ready to do some work (actually to get my lunch from City Snacks) there it is again from, seemingly, from a completely different angle down a side street.  Now, the Post Office Tower is stalking me……….


unexpected views of London landmarks #1

view-iiIt’s one of the great joys of driving a cab (as opposed to being called a crook for deliberately choosing the route with the most traffic) when you come across a completely unexpected view of the city. It had sort of happened to me earlier in the day as I turned into Brixton Hill and you get that great view of the City, with The Gherkin perfectly framed. I’d love to have that view to show you right now but I was actually working, and punters don’t take kindly to you stopping to take a few snaps while the meter is running and they fret about the day ahead. That view, and many others, will have to form part of my hastily named & snappily titled new series – Long Roads in London with Great views, trust me, there are plenty of them. Fortunately, the cabbie gods smiled on me yesterday, and provided me with another view that was much more unexpected. Taking a nice lady from Marylebone station to Crouch Hill, I was feeling quite proud of my ability to actually remember the roads of north London. Normally, the mere mention of a destination north of Regent’s Park brings on an immediate nose bleed and palpatations, but with the aid of a few hints from my passenger I got to Crouch Hill no problem. Having remembered that Stapleton Hall Road leads straight into Ferme Park Road (my punters destination) we were home and dry. Up the hill we went and then, all of a sudden, there was Alexandra Palace staring me straight in the face. Whilst it must be nearly 2 miles away from the point this photo was taken, it felt like you could reach out and touch it. And thats, more or less, what I tried to do. Hastily bidding my punter goodbye (thanks for the tip, it all helps) I was straight round the block to the junction of Ridge Road & Ferme Park Road to take in the view and record it for this site. Now, all that is left, is for somebody to tell me where Ferme Park is. Nearby is a Stationers Park and a Priory Park but not a Ferme Park. Any of you norf Londoners help me out?