For lunch today I went down to the Borough (just south of London Bridge, if you don’t have a map handy). I was meeting Tigger and we were supposed to lunch with her sister. Unfortunately, sister got busy, lost track of the time, and had to cancel. Never mind, we had a pleasant lunch together just the two of us.
Tigger had to go back to work and on the way home I took a few photos along Borough High Street. The spire of St George’s church used to dominate this view of the street but the Shard now overshadows it and all other buildings, disfiguring the London skyline.
When I first started visiting the Borough, six or seven years ago, I used to see this carpet shop which had closing-down sale notices in the window. It displayed them for years and I wondered when the announced closure was going to happen. Then the shop turned into a “gallery” and before you knew it, closed down. It has been empty for a very long time.
This building is functional but is quite a pleasant design. I think it must be an old warehouse. I did once buy some wine here but if you were to ask me whether it was any good, I cannot say because it was bought as a gift for someone else. In any case, these days I don’t drink alcohol.
“The Glad” is a well known pub just off Borough High Street in Lant Street. If you are a pub enthusiast, you might recognize the figure in the slouch hat depicted on the side of the building and unfortunately somewhat obscured by the fence put up by the school next door. The self-same picture graces Filthy McNasty’s pub in Amwell Street, Islington, the same company owning both. Both are music pubs.
The above building was once the Post Office and its design is typical of such buildings. I have used its services myself several times but, for whatever reason, it was closed down and nowadays, if you need a Post Office, you have to walk up the road to London Bridge or find a shop in a nearby street that includes a sub-post office among its services. It is quite a handsome building and I am glad it has been preserved at least.
Here is a closer view of St George’s. Viewing it from this angle decreases the dominance of the Shard but don’t be fooled: that is just an effect of the perspective. Nothing short of explosives will get rid of that horrid structure.
I took the tube at Borough station. Because both lifts were in motion, I went down by the stairs. There are 120-odd steps on this spiral staircase that is intended for emergency use but which people often use instead of waiting for the lifts. As I went down, it occurred to me to take a photo and near the bottom there is a concrete shelf or plinth right under the stairwell where I could rest my elbows to take the picture. Here is the result.
If you live in the Borough, all these sights will be familiar to you. The Borough, gathered around London Bridge on the south bank of the Thames, was once the southern entrance to London, a place of coaching inns, markets and bustle. Those days have gone but the Borough still retains a character of its won and offers many historic points of interest to the explorer.