Lost London, and the Brunel Tunnel

A Book and an Exhibition on Lost London

FROG members who prefer sitting indoors at this time of year might like to know about a new book just published called “Lost London 1870-1945” by Philip Davies. I haven’t seen it yet, but the review I read was illustrated with a fantastic photograph of the construction of Tower Bridge. It also mentioned the alleys of Bankside, and old ship’s figureheads in a breaker’s yard in Millbank, so I think it should be interesting to us. Unfortunately it costs £29.99, but of course your local library should be able to get it for you if the price seems a bit steep. (Researchers might also like to know that you can look online at the catalogues of all the public libraries in London) There is also a free exhibition of the Lost London photos at Kenwood House, Hampstead Lane, NW3, until Monday 5 April, 11.30 – 4.00pm.

A Walk to See the Brunel Tunnel

For FROGs who want to be outside, on Saturday 13 February, Robert Hulse of the Brunel Museum in Rotherhithe is giving a talk about Brunel’s tunnel, followed by a walk to see the Grand Entrance of the tunnel. The event starts in Rotherhithe Library, Albion Street, and is from 2.30 to 4.00 pm. To book, phone Rotherhithe Library on 020 7394 0280. Even if you have been to the museum before, I think this will be very well worth while, as Robert Hulse is a great enthusiast for the Brunels – the tunnel was more Marc’s than Isambard’s work really – but also if I’ve understood correctly, the work on the East London line means that more of the tunnel can now be seen. It was the first tunnel dug under a navigable river, using a tunnelling shield, and both the shield method and the tunnel itself are still used today.