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Lord Mayor’s Show 2016 in the City of London – 12th November 2016

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The Lord Mayor’s Show is one of the oldest and most important traditions of London, its origins go back to 1215 when King John was in trouble with his Barons looked to the City of London for support. In 1215 the King was persuaded to issue a Royal Charter that allowed the City of London to elect its own Mayor, but there was an important condition. Every year the newly elected Mayor must leave the safety of the City, travel upriver to the small town of Westminster and swear loyalty to the Crown. The Lord Mayor has now made that journey for 800 years, despite plagues and fires and countless wars, and pledged his (and her) loyalty to 34 kings and queens of England.

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The Mayor was a power equal to any of John’s unruly Barons, and only two months later the first elected Mayor would put his signature to the Magna Carta. He was no doubt responsible for the wording of part 13:

13. The city of London shall enjoy all its ancient liberties and free customs, both by land and by water. We also will and grant that all other cities, boroughs, towns, and ports shall enjoy all their liberties and free customs.

For the next few hundred years, Lord Mayor of London was by far the grandest position to which a commoner could aspire, and the Mayor’s journey was the celebrity spectacle of its day. Over the centuries it grew so splendid and so popular that by the 16th century it was known everywhere as the Lord Mayor’s Show. It features in the plays of Shakespeare, the diaries of Pepys and the adventures of James Bond and of course in the pantomime story of Dick Whittington, who was the Mayor of London three times. In the 20th century the Lord Mayor’s Show was the first outside event ever to be broadcast live and it still attracts a TV audience of millions.

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The modern Lord Mayor’s procession is a direct descendant of that first journey to Westminster. The state coach is 350 years old and the show features the City’s businesses, Livery Companies, charities, Her Majesty’s Forces, the City Police and Londoners from all walks of life come together to enjoy a celebration of the City’s ancient power and prosperity. The new Lord Mayor is Alderman Andrew Parmley who will become the 689th Lord Mayor. He will take office after the Silent Ceremony on Friday 11 November at the Guildhall in the heart of the Square Mile with the annual Lord Mayor’s Show taking place on Saturday 12 November

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The show itself is in three main parts, the River Pageant, the Lord Mayor’s Procession and the Lord Mayor’s Fireworks. Each have their own attractions and for those who want to find out more about the City of London there will be Guided Walks  in the afternoon. The timings are as follows:

The 2016 Lord Mayor’s Show is on Saturday 12th November. There are events all day and many other family activities and special exhibitions will be laid on in the area. From the Lord Mayor’s arrival by river to the fireworks finale, the Lord Mayor’s Day is packed with spectacle.

09:00: River Pageant

The original Lord Mayor’s journey was always taken by river. The modern Lord Mayor celebrates that history by travelling to the City in a splendid flotilla of traditional Thames barges and small boats, including the famous QRB Gloriana. Tower Bridge opens in salute at 09.25 and the new Lord Mayor alights at HMS President ten minutes later.

11:00: Lord Mayor’s Procession

This is a procession unlike any other in the world: last year there were over 7000 participants, 20 bands, 150 horses, hundreds of other carriages, carts, coaches and other vehicles including vintage cars, steam buses, tanks, tractors, ambulances, fire engines, unicycles, steamrollers, giant robots, helicopters, ships, penny farthings, beds and bathtubs.

The procession sets off from Mansion House at 11am. It pauses at the Royal Courts while the Lord Mayor gives his oath and then returns up the Victoria Embankment at about 1pm. The Lord Mayor will get back to Mansion House just after 2.

15:00: Guided Walks

In the lull between procession and fireworks you will find the remarkable City of London Guide Lecturers giving walking tours around the strange old streets of the City of London. The walks are easy and free, but we hope you will make a donation to the Lord Mayor’s Appeal.

17:15: Lord Mayor’s Fireworks

The new Lord Mayor completes his first day in office with a magnificent fireworks display over the Thames. The launchpad floats in the river between Blackfriars and Waterloo and all the roads in that area are still closed, so you can walk freely around either bank of the river and find a good spot to enjoy the end of the Show.

It’s one of London’s most spectacular annual displays  but for the best view head down to the riverside between Waterloo and Blackfriars Bridges, either on Victoria Embankment or on the South Bank. The display will last about 15-20 minutes.

The procession will set off from Mansion House at 11:05am. It is led away by the Band of the Coldstream Guards and at a steady marching pace they will take 27 minutes to get to the Royal Courts. The procession that follows is over an hour long, so the City’s sanitation department (who always bring up the rear) will reach the courts at around 12.30. The return leg leaves Temple Place at 1.10pm and the tail of the procession arrives back at Mansion House at 2.30.

Crowds

The busiest parts of the route are around St Paul’s and Mansion House. If you’re at all concerned about the crowds, or might be a bit unsteady on your feet, please avoid those areas. In quieter places like Fleet Street the crowd should be much more manageable and you should be able to use folding chairs. There is also less of a crush during the return leg of the procession.

Two of the most interesting aspects of the show is the magnificent State Coach which is over 250 years old and the wicker giants are Gog and Magog, the traditional guardians of the City of London. They first walked at the head of the Lord Mayor’s procession around five hundred years ago.

For more information or to book tickets, visit the Lord’s Mayor Show website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website
here

Review : London’s Roman Amphitheatre at the Guildhall

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One of the most unusual and little known attractions in the City of London is the remains of a Roman amphitheatre beneath the Guildhall Art Gallery. Although the remains are quite limited, their discovery during the redevelopment of the Guildhall Art Gallery in the 1980’s offer some fascinating insights into Roman London.

For well over a century, archaeologists had searched for London’s Roman Amphitheatre and it was considered a surprise that it was built within the old Roman city walls when the majority of ancient amphitheatres were generally built outside the city walls.

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Compared with the large amphitheatres in the Rome and other parts of the Roman world, the history of the London amphitheatre suggests a more modest wooden structure built around AD70, although it was rebuilt in the early 2nd century it is doubtful the capacity was never more than 6,000 to 7,000 people. Throughout the history of the London amphitheatre it is likely that was used for ceremonial public events, religious activities, animal fights, public executions and gladiatorial combat.

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When the Romans left Britain in the fourth century, the amphitheatre was deserted and a ruin for hundreds of years before in the 11th century the area was reoccupied probably by a Viking settlement , by the 12th century the first Guildhall was built next to it.

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The discovery of the Roman amphitheatre provided evidence that this particularly small Guildhall site has been at the centre of London life for almost two thousand years. The attraction has a highly original digital projection and with the sounds of the crowds you can get a taste of what it might have like in a barbaric and bloody Roman Britain.

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As an antidote to the brutal sport of the Roman amphitheatre, visitors can walk upstairs and explore the fine collection of paintings in the Guildhall Art Gallery. Walking out of the Gallery into the courtyard if you look on the ground there is black inlaid stone in the paving which marks the outline of the arena below.

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London’s Roman Amphitheatre forms part of Guildhall Galleries which includes the City’s Art and Heritage Galleries, Guildhall Library, Guildhall Great Hall and St Lawrence Jewry all are located in the same area and are free to enter.

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If you would like to visit the ruins of London’s Roman Amphitheatre, walk into the Guildhall Art Gallery.and follow the signs. The admission is Free.

Visiting London Guide Rating – Highly Recommended

Opening hours

Monday – Saturday, 10am – 5pm

Sunday, 12pm – 4pm

If you would like further information, visit the City of London website here

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in January 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website
here

 

London Christmas Markets 2015

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One of the highlights of the festive period in London is the Christmas Markets that often line the Thames, the riverside is transformed by stalls with treats from independent traders, artisan producers, pop-up bars and food vendors in the traditional wooden chalets.

Following the popularity of last year’s More London Christmas Market, the event expands this year and changes its name to London Bridge City Christmas Market.

London Bridge City Christmas Market.

The Christmas Market is spread over various location including More London, Hay’s Galleria and London Bridge City Pier. The event begins with Lights On, Christmas Tree Lighting and Carol Singing on the 30th November at 18:00 – 18:30 at Hay’s Galleria.

Over the festive period there will be a number of events including Pagoda Lights, London Bridge City Elpless Elves and Christmas Jumper Day Photobooth.

Opening times: 10am to 8pm daily. Closed on Christmas Day.

Date:       30 November 2015 – 3 January 2016

Time         10:00 – 20:00

Location   More London Riverside, Hay’s Galleria and London Bridge City Pier.

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Tate Modern Christmas Market

After the success of last year, the Tate Modern Christmas Market returns where you can enjoy a traditional festive atmosphere. You can eat German Bratwurst or roasted chestnuts as you browse the market for hand-crafted gifts or have a drink at the Moose Bar or enjoy a retro cocktail in the Airstream Bar. Children can also enjoy a ride on the Victorian carousel or pay a visit to Santa in his grotto.

Opening times: 11am to 9pm Monday to Thursday, 11am to 10pm on Friday, 10am to 10pm on Saturday and 10am to 9pm on Sunday.

Southbank Christmas Market

One of the most popular Christmas Market’s with wooden chalets are filled with festive food, drinks, gifts and treats.There will be plenty of mulled wine, quality food and handmade crafts within the shadow of the Southbank.

20 November –  24 December

Sunday – Thursday, 11am – 9pm

Friday – Saturday, 11am – 10pm

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Winter Wonderland Christmas Market in Hyde Park

A large number of stalls at the Christmas Market within the Winter Wonderland site, over 200 Bavarian style wooden chalets with a large range of traditional gifts.

20th November 2015 – 3rd January 2016

Open 10 am to 10 pm daily

There will be other Christmas Markets all over London that will be open at various times over the festive period including the Barbican, Angel, Exmouth Market, Guildhall and Venn Street.

London Visitors is the official blog for the Visiting London Guide .com website. The website was developed to bring practical advice and latest up to date news and reviews of events in London.
Since our launch in 2014, we have attracted thousands of readers each month, the site is constantly updated.
We have sections on Museums and Art Galleries, Transport, Food and Drink, Places to Stay, Security, Music, Sport, Books and many more.
There are also hundreds of links to interesting articles on our blog.
To find out more visit the website here

London Top Restaurants – Hawksmoor Seven Dials

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11 Langley Street, London WC2H 9JG

After Will Beckett and Huw Gott had a series of less than successful eateries, they eventually came up with the concept of Hawksmoor, a steak house but very different from the others in the market.

Hawksmoor  is a meat eater’s paradise but it takes its product very seriously, when looking around for the best steaks it found that the best steaks come from carefully reared native cattle breeds right here in Britain.

It was using these producers that have made Hawksmoor’s reputation for quality meat, next they resourced quality seafood.

After the success of Hawksmoor  Spitalfields , the group has open three other Hawksmoor restaurants Air Street, Guildhall and Seven Dials.

Hawksmoor Seven Dials forgoes providing breakfast to concentrate on interesting dishes which play to their strengths.

Some examples are Brixham Crab on Toast ,Hawksmoor Smoked Salmon, Half a Native Lobster ,Steak Tartare ,Tamworth Belly Ribs and Bone Marrow with Onions .

Steaks can be large, Fillet (300g) Bone-in Sirloin (500g), Rib-eye (400g) 30.00 D-Rump (350g) .

With an enlightened philosophy related to sustainability and staff development ,  Hawksmoor  have built a great reputation for their restaurants and quality of food and service.

Opening times:

Lunch
Monday – Saturday
12:00 – 3:00pm

Dinner

Monday – Thursday
Restaurant bookings 5:00 – 10:30pm
Last bar orders 12am

Friday – Saturday
Restaurant bookings 5:00 – 11:00pm
Last bar orders 12:30am

Sunday
12:00 – 9.30pm

For more information, visit the Hawksmoor website here