A London Inheritance Guided Walks

My walks for 2021 have now completed, however I will be starting a new series of walks in 2022 covering the South Bank, Barbican, Bankside, Bermondsey, Rotherhithe and Wapping. Please click follow on my Eventbrite page for notification of when new walks are available. The page is here:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/o/a-london-inheritance-walks-33326287375

Welcome to the page dedicated to my London Guided Walks. Based on the blog, these walks will take you on a journey through the history of an area of London, discovering how the city has evolved to the place we see today.

I have walked London for as long as I can remember. Some of my earliest memories are being taken for weekend walks around the city in the late 1960s – not sure it was always what I wanted to do, but those walks left an impression that has lasted.

I started scanning my father’s negatives in the late 1990s. It took many years as there were thousands of photos to scan, with family and work commitments being a priority. There were some notes to identify the locations and I did have a few years where he could identify the locations of scanned photos for me, however a large number still needed tracing.

The blog was started in 2014 to give me the incentive of going out and finding the locations of these photos dating back to 1946. It was also a means of discovering and learning more of London as a weekly post could cover my father’s photos or other areas of London that I wanted to walk and explore.

Looking back through my posts, they tend to focus on a single early photo or place. There are many individual posts that should combine to tell the story of how an area of London has changed, how the history of a place has influenced what we see today, along with the story of those who have lived and worked there.

A chance meeting with one of the tutors of the Islington and Clerkenwell Guiding Course at St Giles Clerkenwell during one of the Barbican at 50 events resulted in the idea of using a guided walk as a means of bringing together the story of a place. Stories that I have told in multiple blog posts, and using some of my father’s photos at the sites they were taken from. I had a place on the course in 2020 and passed by the end of the year.

I am now really pleased to announce the availability of my first two guided walks.

Guided walks that will focus on a specific area of London. They will discover the history of the area, people who have lived and worked there, how the area has changed and how these changes have resulted in the place we see today.

Each walk will have small groups with a maximum of ten people, and will take around 2 hours with between 10 and 12 stops.

I will also be using some of my father’s photos, as close as possible to the spot from where they were taken, to illustrate 70 years of change.

I look forward to showing you around.

The South Bank – Marsh, Industry, Culture and the Festival of Britain

Guided Walks

In the 70th anniversary year of the Festival of Britain, come and discover the story of the Festival, the main South Bank site, and how a festival which was meant to deliver a post war “tonic for the nation” created a futuristic view of a united country, and how the people of the country were rooted in the land and seas.

We will also discover the history of the South Bank of the Thames, from Westminster to Blackfriars Bridges, today one of London’s major tourist destinations, and with the Royal Festival Hall and National Theatre, also a significant cultural centre.

Along the South Bank we will discover a story of the tidal river, marsh, a Roman boat, pleasure gardens, industry, housing and crime. The South Bank has been the centre of governance for London, and the area is an example of how wartime plans for the redevelopment of London transformed what was a derelict and neglected place.

Lasting around 2 hours, the walk will start by Waterloo Station and end a short distance from Blackfriars Bridge.

At the end of the walk, we will have covered almost 2,000 years of history, and walked from a causeway running alongside a tidal marsh, to the South Bank we see today.

Dates and links for booking are:

The Lost Streets of the Barbican

Guided Walks

On the evening of the 29th December 1940, one of the most devastating raids on London created fires that destroyed much of the area north of St Paul’s Cathedral and between London Wall, almost to Old Street.

The raid destroyed a network of streets that had covered this area of Cripplegate for centuries. Lives, workplaces, homes and buildings were lost. Well-known names such as Shakespeare and Cromwell and their connection with the Barbican and Cripplegate will be discovered, as well as those lost to history such as the woman who sold milk from a half house, and that artisan dining is not a recent invention.

Out of wartime destruction, a new London Wall emerged, along with the Barbican and Golden Lane estates that would dominate post-war reconstruction. Destruction of buildings would also reveal structures that had been hidden for many years.

On this walk, we will start at London Wall, and walk through the Barbican and Golden Lane estates, discovering the streets, buildings and people that have been lost and what can still be found. We will explore post-war reconstruction, and look at the significant estates that now dominate the area.

Lasting just under two hours, by the end of the walk, we will have walked through almost 2,000 years of this unique area of London, the streets of today, and the streets lost to history.

Dates and links for booking are:

I will be adding new dates for the above two tours, and new tours in the coming weeks and months which will be listed on this page.

6 thoughts on “A London Inheritance Guided Walks

  1. Erica Wiles

    Sunday’s walk along the South Bank was excellent – so informative and with many interesting photographs of its past appearance. I learned so much about sites I had previously walked past without seeing. A real eye opener. David was a brilliant communicator.

    Reply
  2. Elaine Day

    The South Bank walk is excellent and highly recommended. In spite of living in the area for 25 years I was introduced to information and sites that I was unaware of. The additional links and recommendations are entertaining and informative and well worth following up.

    Reply
  3. Jane Speare

    A fascinating insight into the area surrounding and including the Barbican. I found out lots about the area and will look at it with new eyes in the future. Well worth the money! Thanks

    Reply
  4. Tony Stafford

    We really enjoyed the Barbican walk today – varied, informative and entertaining. Thanks David.

    Reply
  5. Sara and Mike James

    We really enjoyed the walk yesterday, 18th July, around the Barbican and Golden Lane Estate. It was very interesting learning how London regenerated the area after WW2 and how it still lives side by side with Roman and medieval remains, some of which are in a carpark under London Wall!

    Reply
  6. Wendy Shires

    Thoroughly enjoyed the Barbican walk yesterday. David is very knowledgeable and entertaining and his father’s photos add an extra dimension to the walk

    Reply

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