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The Golden Hinde II at St Mary Overie Dock , Southwark

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Golden Hinde II

Location – 1 Pickfords Wharf,Clink Street, London, SE1 9DG

It is one of the joys of London to come across the unexpected, however the full size authentic replica of the Golden Hinde at St Mary Overie Dock is not just a tourist attraction but is a fully functional ship built by traditional methods at Appledore in North Devon and launched in 1973. Like the original Golden Hinde, the replica has circumnavigated the globe and altogether has travelled more than 140,000 miles.

The replica was the brainchild of two American businessmen, Albert Elledge and Art Blum, who, in 1968, wanted to commemorate the upcoming 400th anniversary of Sir Francis Drake’s landing on the west coast of North America in 1579.They commissioned Loring Christian Norgaard, a Californian naval architect to undertake the task of designing the ship. This was no simple task as there were no plans for the original ship, therefore Norgaard had to search records and journals and study Tudor shipbuilding techniques to come up with an authentic replica.

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When the design was ready the task of building the ship was undertaken by J Hinks and Son who had more than 100 years experience of traditional craftsmanship. Original materials and tools were used to create the ship and all aspects of the ship interior and exterior were produced after meticulous research.

On her maiden journey she sailed to San Francisco and in the next 20 years sailed all over the world. In this time she became a familiar sight in Films and Television series.

Since 1996 she has been berthed in St Mary Overie Dock and is used to illustrate Elizabethan maritime history to the many schools and children who visit her.

In a strange way history is repeating itself, for after Drake returned to England in the Golden Hind after sailing around the world, the ship was moored in Deptford on public display for over 100 years before she was finally broken up.

Tours and Fun days are available where children can dress up as Tudor sailors or Pirates and explore the ship.

Tickets Prices are usually around £ 7 for Adults and £ 5 for Children.

For more information click here

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Local rights for local folk

For practical advice and special offers for your London visit go to visitinglondonguide.com

London Cafes – Caffe Paradiso , Shad Thames

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Caffé Paradiso

Location – 45 Shad Thames, London SE1 2NJ

Although Caffé Paradiso is a relative newcomer opening in 2006, its has connections to a Sicilian couple who came to London in the 1930s. Rita and Enrico Olivelli opened their Bloomsbury restaurant in the 1930s which soon became a favourite of students from the nearby drama school RADA. Olivelli became famous for its Sicilian cuisine and when the restaurant was sold in 1993, two Sicilian – born brothers Giovanni and Salvatore Salamone bought it determined to continue the Sicilian tradition. Other restaurants followed in Mayfair and Waterloo and two cafes called Caffé Paradiso, one in Bloomsbury and this one at Tower Bridge.

What sets this Café apart from the numerous chains around it is the delicious handmade savouries and patisserie made to authentic Sicilian recipes. The gelato is made by Sicilian chefs in London.

Friendly staff, good coffee and even a breakfast menu make this one of the most popular cafes this side of Tower Bridge. The only problem you are likely to find is getting a seat in the small intimate surroundings.

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For practical advice and special offers for your London visit go to visitinglondonguide.com

The Clink Prison Museum

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The Clink Museum

Location – 1 Clink St, London , SE1 9DG

The Clink Prison Museum is located on the site of one of the famous prison’s in London. In its various forms it served as a prison from the 12th century to 1780.

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The prison was owned by the Bishop of Winchester and built next to his Winchester Palace, it had separate Men’s and Women’s Prisons built in around 1144 which rank amongst some of the oldest in England.

The South Bank at this time was notorious site of Brothels, Taverns and other types of entertainment many which was owned or rented from the Bishop of Winchester himself.

At various times different types of prisoners were held here from general lawbreakers up to 16th century when it was then used for heretics and finally in the 18th century was used as a debtors prison.

In 1450 the Winchester Palace and the prison was attacked by rioters who released the prisoners before burning both buildings to the ground. They were rebuilt soon afterwards. By 1760 the Prison was almost a ruin but was still burnt down by Gordon rioters and was never rebuilt.

Although it did not exist after 1760, the name survived in the English Language as slang for ‘Prison’

The Clink Museum gives visitors ” the opportunity to view archaeological artefacts, handle torture devices, and to view and hear all about the tales of torment and many misfortunes of the inmates of the infamous Clink Prison.”

Ticket Prices

Adults £7.50

Children ( under 16 )  £5.50

Concession£5.50 Students,OAP,Disabled

Family £18.00 2 adults & 2 children under 16

Opening Times   Open all year around, 7 days a week ( Closed on Christmas Day )

Summer (July – September ) 10.00 – 21.00

Winter ( October – June )

Monday to Friday 10.00 – 18.00  Weekend10.00 – 19.30

( last admission 30 minutes before closing )

To find out more about the Museum click here

For practical advice and special offers for your London visit go to visitinglondonguide.com

The Design Museum

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The Design Museum

Location –  28 Shad Thames, London SE1 2YD

The Design Museum is a small museum situated in the Butlers Wharf/ Shad Thames area near to Tower Bridge. The museum covers Industrial, Graphic, Fashion and Architectural design and when it was founded in 1989 claimed to be the first museum of modern design.


The museum is based in an old warehouse but is unrecognisable as a warehouse due to its conversion into a Modernist style building . The museum is run as a registered charity and uses the money gained by the entrance fee to subsidise new exhibitions. The admission fee which will £ 12.40 in 2014 and its location perhaps explains why it only attracts a relatively small 200,000 visitors annually.

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Paul Smith Exhibition runs till March 2014

The Museum has exhibition spaces with some permanent and temporary  exhibits  and education areas which are used for talks and as a space for children and students.

Even if you do not want to pay to see the museum, access to the Shop and Café are free. The Blue Print Café is one of the many Terence Conran restaurants in the area which has wonderful views over the Thames.

Terence Conran has provided a substantial amount of funds to move the Museum to the old Commonwealth Institute in Kensington in 2015.


Daily 10am – 5.45pm Last admission 5.15pm

The Design Museum is open on all bank and national holidays, except 25 and 26 December. On 24 December, the museum closes 2pm.


For practical advice and special offers for your London visit go to visitinglondonguide.com