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Lamb and Flag – Covent Garden
Location – 33 Rose St, London WC2E 9EB
The Lamb and Flag tucked away in a backstreet of Covent Garden is a reminder of the areas past reputation as a centre of vice and criminal activities.
There was a time when the pub was known as the Bucket of Blood because bare fisted fights were held in one of the backrooms. In the alley at the side in 1679, John Dryden the poet was beaten up by a group of men said to be in the pay of the notorious Earl of Rochester who had taken exception to one of Dryden’s pieces of work.
Like many pubs in London,there is claims that Charles Dickens frequented the pub in the 19th century.
The pub had a nice well-worn wooden interior and the low beams only add to the attractive character.
The only drawback to the pub is its popularity, it can get very busy sometimes in the week and often in the summer drinkers stand outside.
Another problem can be finding the pub tucked up a small passageway in the winding streets of Covent Garden, the easiest way to find it is from Garrick Street.
Garrick Street entrance between Carluccios and Com Viet
St James’s Park
St James’s Park is the oldest Royal Park in London, The park was originally a piece of marshland, then in the 13th century a leper hospital was built. It was after the hospital dedicated to St James the Less that the park was named, In 1532 Henry VIII acquired the land and turned it into a deer park and then built St James’s Palace. Subsequent Kings and Queens made minor changes until Charles the II redesigned the park and opened it to the public. Charles entertained his mistress Nell Gwynne in the park and for a while the park had a reputation as a sordid sexual playground. This was captured in the Earl of Rochester’s sexually explicit poem ‘A Ramble in St. James’s Park.’
Horse Guards Parade which is still part of St James’s Park was created in the 18th century by filling in the end of a canal and was generally used for parades. In the 19th century John Nash redesigned the park and transformed the canal into a lake, birds were added to the lake in 1837 and a cottage built for the Birdkeeper.
St James Park is unique because it is surrounded by three palaces, The Palace of Westminster, St James’s Palace and Buckingham Palace.
Another unusual aspect of the park is the Pelicans, they were first introduced to the park in 1664 as a gift from the Russian Ambassador, there are currently six pelicans in the park.
For more information, visit the Royal Parks website here
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