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My visit to London between the two recent terrorist-related attacks. Day 1


It was with a little nervousness that we went to London on the 25th, 26th and 27th May although that did not stop us going.

We travelled by Grand Central, First Class. It was a bit of a warm journey as the air conditioning in First Class was not working.

We went from Kings Cross to Victoria on the tube which took about 8 minutes, we were staying at the Grosvenor Hotel at Victoria.

My wife and a friend were attending the ROSPA Garden Party at Buckingham Palace that afternoon. That gave me the afternoon to myself to revisit old haunts in London and retrace the steps which a close friend, who died a few years ago, and I used to walk in the 70's. We used to be regular theatregoers in the West End.

Having left my wife and friend at Buckingham Palace, I went past the Victoria Memorial and walked down The Mall. I had taken my smallest camera with me (Olympus OM-D E-M10 with the EZ 14-42 lens, a very small but capable camera which fits in a very small bag).

Reaching the Duke of York Steps, a regular route in the 70's, I ascended and walked towards Haymarket.

Duke Of York Steps

Theatre Royal Haymarket and a Tour Bus

I passed to statue to Florence Nightingale and the Crimean War.

Florence Nightingale and The Crimea

Then I went into Trafalgar Square and visited the National Gallery (somewhere I had not been before). The security was very tight and everyone was scanned including their bags. I had a lot of loose change in my pocket and succeeded in setting off the scanner several times until I emptied it out of my pocket. It was nice to see that the security systems were in place. By the time I got in, there was even more of a queue but the guards and I found it amusing.

When I left the National Gallery, I spent a few minutes in Trafalgar Square. It was quite busy but not like I remember. These photos show many people all unknown to me.

I then walked past St Martins in the Field and the National Portrait Gallery. I did not go in there because you had to pay (unlike the National Gallery where entry is free).

I walked the short distance to Leicester Square, via the Italian Quarter and then past China Town to Piccadilly Circus which was very crowded with people sitting on the steps of the Eros Monument.

From there, I walked onto Green Park past The Ritz of London and then through Green Park itself back to Buckingham Palace. It was a very warm day now and there were lots of deckchairs and children playing in the water monument. I sat on the steps on the Victoria Memorial and waited.

A short walk back to the hotel and a restful evening

End of Day 1

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