Friday, 27 March 2009

Blue Plaque for Karl Pearson

The next blue plaque takes us over to Hampstead to the former home of Karl Pearson, born on this day 1857

Karl Pearson was a well known statistitian who set up the first university statistics department at University College London in 1911. He also held some pretty questionable views on eugenics but was a great influence on Albert Einstein when he was forming his Theory of Relativity

You can see the Google Street View Image by clicking on the link below

Karl Pearson Blue Plaque
7 Well Road, Hampstead, NW3
Camden 1983

Wednesday, 25 March 2009

London Blue Plaques on Google Street View

Sorry it's been so long since my last post but in short I was feeling the sharp end of the credit crunch.

Great news for all Blue Plaque fans from Google! Their new Street View service of London gives you great views of many of the capitals historic buildings. I'm going to try and update these regularly until I have time to get back on the bike photographing them myself.

Born on this day in 1881

BARTÓK, Béla (1881-1945

View the Blue Plaque Street View

Hungarian Composer, stayed here when performing in London.
7 Sydney Place, South Kensington, SW7
Kensington and Chelsea 1997

Saturday, 1 March 2008

Vincent Van Gogh Blue Plaque

This was one of the most surprising blue plaques I've come across so far. It turns out that when Van Gogh was a young man he lived in Stockwell, south London, for over a year from 1873 onwards. The story has it that he actually fell in love with the landladys daughter but those feelings were not returned. A classic emotial artist in every way.

I wish I had seen this piece of his work from the period before i took the shot of the house as I think it would make for a much more interesting picture, being able to compare the old with the new.

Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Florence Nightingale's Blue Plaque

Blue Plaque of Florence Nightingale

NIGHTINGALE, Florence (1820-1910),
In a house on this site, Florence Nightingale, 1820-1910, lived and died.
10 South Street, W1
Westminster 1955
Note: New plaque on rebuilt premises. Original plaque erected by the Duke of Westminster and removed when the house was pulled down in 1929.

According to the English Heritage website this plaque replaces one that was erected by the Duke of Westminster on a building that was demolished in 1929. I just had to post this as i really love the way the lead piping curves around the side of the plaque.

As you can see from the plaque Florence Nightingale lived to 90 years of age, very impressive for someone who spent so much of their time surrounded by the very ill and dying.

The plaque is one of many on the back roads tucked in behind Park Lane. I' ll try and paste more over the coming days.

Saturday, 15 September 2007

Blue Plaque Birthday Card

Just a quick post to show the birthday card that my sister Hester made me. Thanks Hes x

Friday, 17 August 2007

These three blue plaques are all very close to each other at number 3, 7 & 12 Hammersmith Terrace. The terrace itself is architecturally interesting, although they sit on the river like urban town houses, when the houses were built Hammersmith and Chiswick were on the very outskirts of London. You can read more about it at Emery Walkers Site.

Number 3, was the former home of Edward Johnston, Master Caligrapher. Millions of Londoners and visitors to the city see his most famous work every day. Edward Johnston designed the font that London Underground uses across all it's literature and signage he also redesigned the very familiar london underground logo.

Emery Walker lived at Number 7 and worked with Thomas James Cobden-Sanderson at Doves Press (Cobde-Sanderson actually lived in the house first) Emery was also a friend of William Morris, the pioneer of the Arts and crafts movement.

And finally Number12 which was the home of Sir Alan Herbert. He was a politician, playwright, poet and author of more than 50 books. His humor was often aimed at the legislators of the day. He was a great law reformer and successfully campaigned for changes to be made to the law regarding divorce. Up until then for a divorce to be granted one party would have to prove that the other had been adulterous.

Sunday, 12 August 2007

Route home from work (the long way) part 1

With over 800 English Heritage Blue Plaques in London you can expect to see them on journeys that you take regularly. I commute 12 miles to work, from NE London to SW London every day. I usualy take public transport but I often cycle too. I had look at my usual route and decided to get the blue plaques that are either on my cycle route home or just off it.

The first is just around the corner from my work at 14 The Terrace, Barnes, SW13. Dame Ninette Valois lived here for 20 years between 1962 and 1982. Cited as being almost singlehandedly responsible for British ballet , she founded the Royal Ballet School in 1931. A couple of doors up is a private, non english heritage plaque for the composer Gustav Holst. I didn't photo this as i'm trying just to get the offical plaques, otherwise i'll be doing this for the rest of my life.

The next stop was over Hammersmith Bridge to the pathway the runs along the Thames. The first plaque here was for George Devine a theatrical manager and producer who lived here for 9 years in the late fifties/early sixties i'd imagine that he would have known Dame Ninette Valois as they were both in very similar circles and there seems to be a connection with Sadlers Wells.

On the othe side of Furnival Gardens is the former residence of Thomas James Cobden-Sanderson, a lovely little house tucked away but with, what I would imgine is a tremouse view of the Thames. Next door is the pub The Dove which, insanely, is where "Rule, Brittania" was written!

A hundred feet or so up the river was the home of the artist Eric Ravilious who lived here for 4 years. You can see some example of his work on his grandsons webpage I really regret not getting a better picture of the house as this brick wall doesn't really convay much about the person that lived here

Next stop on the bike was 51 Queen Caroline Street, W6 the home of Sir Frank Brangwyn, also an artist. He probably new Cobden-Sanderson as they both knew William Morris. You can see some examples of his work here

Back onto my normal way home round Hammersmith roundabout and then up Hammersmith Road. I took a right onto Brook Green to get a photo of the home of another artist named Frank. This one was the etcher and engraver, Sir Frank Short who lived at number 56 Brookgreen.

After cycling up High Street Ken and dodging shoppers I caught up with a blue plaque on the other side of Hyde Park that I had seen a couple of times but had yet to photo. Apologies that the photo isn't that good but i found the Thames Water sign in front of the house explaining that the road was closed due to the work they were undertaking fixing the "ageing network" of Londons Victorian water mains in front of one of the periods most famous writers too good to miss. J.M. Barrie the celebrated author of Peter Pan lived at 100 Bayswater Road. It was here that he first met the three boys, George, Jack and Peter Llewelyn Davies, the sons of his neighbours Arthur and Sylvia Lleweln Davies. The boys would become his inspiration for the Peter Pan characters and he referred to George as the real Peter Pan, who like so many of his generation died in the trenches during the first world war aged only 21.

Next i was planning on heading straight up to my final plaque of the day but instead of my usual route, over Marble Arch and then down Oxford St I decided to cut through the back and in doing so caught a couple of surprise plaques.

Almost straight away I came acroos the House of the architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, who had designed and lived in this house between 1926-1960.

A minute later I had chanced uponthe plaque to the Ballerina Marie Taglioni who lived here for just a year between 1875 and 1876. Seems like a very short time, but i guess the career of a ballerina is a short one.

Next was the home of Elizabeth Garrett Anderson who lived at 20 Upper Berkeley Street and was the first Engishwoman to qualify as a doctor. I had hoped you would be able to make out the writing on the window of the clinic next door advertising Chinese Medicine and Homeopathy.

The last house that i hadn't planned to visit was another architect that of George Emund Street who's most famous work is the Royal Courts of Justice on The Strand.

The last trip of the day was suggested to my by a friend as he used to live there! It's the home of the most famous of all the clowns Joseph Grimaldi, 56 Exmouth Market. It's good to see that entertainment has remained at the heart of the building as it now a video (DVD?) shop.

Apologies for the photo but I had just ridden 12 miles and i think the guy I asked to take it was a little bit taken aback.