One of my favourite facts gleaned from the book was learning that the Burlington Arcade was built to prevent people from throwing oysters (a fast food during 19th century London) into the yard of the 1st Earl of Burlington's townhouse.
Other interesting facts I came across include:
- -None of London's bridges are named after a monarch or a prime minister, which is unusual for a capital city
- -By law every printed literary item published in Britain must be deposited in the British Library (this includes trashy Katie Price autobiographies)
- -London has a Fan Museum, which has more than 5,000 fans on display (some heralding from the 11th century)
- -Dueling used to be a regular occurrence in Battersea Park
So, if you want to look at lesser-known London off the beaten path, then this book is for you.
Galleries, Palaces & Tea by David Backhouse is published by Curll Press and available for £9.99 from www.amazon.co.uk.