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Review – Borough Market

Borough Market

Location – 8 Southwark St, London SE1 1TL

Borough Market is a wholesale and retail food market in Southwark on the South Bank of the Thames, It is one of the largest and oldest food markets in London and over the last few years has gained a reputation as one of the finest markets in London.

Part of that reputation is due to the quality of food and drink available and many of the market’s most famous traders have become brands in their own right.

The market generally consists of around 70 stalls at which fresh produce is sold this includes fish, meats, vegetables, ciders, cheeses, breads, coffees, cakes and patisseries. As well as produce grown in the UK, other stalls specialise in quality produce imported from abroad.

A Borough Market has existed in one form or another since 1014, although has moved to various sites around the Borough and London Bridge area. The present buildings are mostly from the 19th century when the market was one of the most important in London for fresh produce.

The Market is run by a charitable trust who maintain a commitment to quality and high standards, only stall holders that reach these standards are allowed to sell at the market.

In recent years the Market has become the haunt of celebrity chefs and a trendy place to buy food, it also features in a number of TV and films.

One of the joys of visiting the Borough Market is to wander around the various stalls and tasting the often delicious produce and take in the wonderful fragrances of the street food. Some of the food is expensive but the quality is usually excellent and the stall holders are very knowledgable about their products and are happy to impart that knowledge if you are interested.

The retail market operates on Wednesday to Thursday 10am to 5pm, Fridays from 10am to 6pm, and Saturdays from 8 am to 5 pm. It is also open for lunches Mon and Tues 10 am to 5 pm. The wholesale market operates on all weekday mornings from 2 a.m. to 8 a.m.

For further information about Borough Market visit their website here

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Great London Pubs – The George Inn – Borough


The George Inn

Location – The George Inn Yard, 77 Borough High Street, Southwark, London, SE1 1NH

The George Inn is one of the most famous pubs on the South side of the River Thames, it is the last surviving galleried London coaching Inn and is currently owned by the National trust.


There has been an Inn on this site from at least 1543, and there are records that show the George was rebuilt in 1677 after the fire that destroyed much of medieval Southwark. At this time there were a large number Inns in the area due to its proximity to London Bridge. One of the most famous the Tabard where Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales pilgrims departed from was also rebuilt at this time but was eventually demolished in the 19th century.


The pub has other literary connections being mentioned in Dicken’s Little Dorrit, this was an area Dickens was very familiar with because his father had been imprisoned in the nearby Marshalsea prison and there is evidence that he  frequented the George on his travels through the neighbourhood.


The building is Grade I listed, and has a host of small rooms and wonderful outside drinking area.


Even if you do not go for a drink, it is well worth visiting and admire the galleries which once would have been vantage points for watching plays and events in the courtyard.

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

The Shard


The Shard

Location – The View from The Shard, Joiner Street, London SE1 3UD


The Shard is the tallest building in London standing at a height of 1,016ft (310m), it is also the tallest building in Western Europe. The 87 storey skyscraper construction began in 2009 and completed in 2012, it is jointly owned by Sellar Property and the State of Qatar. The Shard has been one of the most controversial of the new skyscrapers to appear in London in the last few years, much of the criticism has been that the Shard dwarfs the other generally low level buildings on the South Bank and distorts the skyline.


The Shard was designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano and is has multi functional uses.

73–87 Floors – Spire

68–72 Floors – The View from the Shard (observatory)

53–65 Floors – Residences

34–52 Floors – Hotel

31–33 Floors – Restaurants (Hutong, Oblix and Aqua Shard)

3–28  Floors – Offices

1–2     Floors – Retail and office reception

Ground Floor – Hotel, restaurant and observatory entrances


The View from The Shard

shard ent

The View from the Shard is a privately operated observation deck attraction which opened in 2013, you travel up to the 68, 69 and 72 floors where 800 feet above the streets of London you can on a clear day see for around 40 miles in each direction.

From October 2013 the opening hours will be: Sunday-Wednesday, 10am-7pm; and Thursday-Saturday, 10am-10pm.

Tickets from £24.95 Adults , £18.95 Child.

VLG Tip We recommend you book your tickets in advance. This way, you will avoid queues and also save money. Advance bookings can be made at any time online up to four months in advance, based on availability.

For more information visit the Shard Website here