We’re at the top of the Monopoly board where the properties start to get interesting. What we’re really referring to are the financial rewards and the reds of Strand, Fleet Street and Trafalgar Square are some of the most landed-upon squares on the whole board.
Read on to find out the fascinating story of the Reds!
There’s no getting away from it, Christmas is coming! You’ll buy enough food to feed a small army, presents to keep under the tree and hideous jumpers with reindeers on but after lunch what to do? Monopoly of course, it’s almost the law, but aside from being the world’s most popular board game that turns 80 this year, there are lots of facts about the game you may not know…
- Of the 16 Community Chest cards, 10 will give you cash
- In 1941, the British Secret Service commissioned games that included real money, maps and compasses to be sent to POWs to aid their escape
- The total cash count in every game is £13,190
- The only property on the board south of the Thames is Old Kent Road
- The Monopoly Man, aka Rich Uncle Pennybags is supposed to have been modelled on US financier JP Morgan
Strand (£220); Rent £18; 1 House £90; 2 Houses £250; 3 Houses £700; 4 Houses £875; Hotel £1,050
It hasn’t always been called Strand. In fact, in 1002, it was known as Strondway, in 1185 as Stronde and in 1220, la Stranda. It’s a derivative of the old English word ‘strand’ meaning ‘shore’ and formed part of a shallow bank of the Thames before the Victoria Embankment was built.
Today the Strand runs from Trafalgar Square to Temple Bar where it continues into Fleet Street (hence the grouping on the game board) and in the 13th century it was known as Densemanestret or ‘street of the Danes’ because of the Danish community that settled in the area in the 9th century and who built the famous church of St Clement Danes.
The art deco splendour of the Savoy Hotel sits on the Strand as does the entrance to the magnificent Somerset House and the road was popularised in the famous music hall song ‘Let’s All Go Down the Strand’. In the 19th century it was the centre of Victorian theatre although almost all of the most popular venues of the day are long gone.
Savoy Hotel, Strand, London © Nick Garrod
Today, the Strand is noted for its connections to travel, with hotels, luggage and tourists agents lining its length as well as famous stamp dealers including Stanley Gibbons.
Fleet Street (£220); Rent £18; 1 House £90; 2 Houses £250; 3 Houses £700; 4 Houses £875; Hotel £1,050
Say Fleet Street to anyone in the UK and the immediate association is with the newspaper industry since William Caxton’s apprentice, the perfectly named Wynkyn de Worde set up a printing shop near Shoe Lane around 1500. Even though most of them moved out in the 1980s, the evocative image of hacks hunkering down in pubs and drinking holes looking for the scoop remains.
Fleet Street, Daily Courant © Matt Brown
Fleet Street was named after the River Fleet, the largest underground river in London and was the road that linked the City to the political hub at Westminster in the 13thcentury. Perhaps a natural extension of this was the development of the legal quarter. Temple, formerly the property of the Knights Templar, includes two of the four Inns of Court and the Royal Courts of Justice and the Old Bailey are a few minutes’ walk away.
Today the association is predominantly with high finance. Banking behemoth Goldman Sachs is in the old Daily Telegraph building; England’s oldest private bank C. Hoare & Co have been there since 1690 and the much-maligned Royal Bank of Scotland has been there since 1580.
Trafalgar Square (£240); Rent £20; 1 House £100; 2 Houses £300; 3 Houses £750; 4 Houses £925; Hotel £1,100
Initially laid out by architect John Nash in the 1820s, Trafalgar Square is one of London’s most famous tourist destinations and up until 2001 it was also the home to what seemed like most of London’s pigeons.
Named after the Battle of Trafalgar, perhaps Britain’s most famous naval victory in the Napoleonic Wars, the centrepiece of the magnificent square is Nelson’s Column. A Corinthian column designed by William Railton a little over 169ft in height, it is guarded on all corners by four bronze lions designed by Sir Edwin Landseer.
Trafalgar Square, London © Sathish J
Now pedestrianised, Trafalgar Square is bordered by the National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery, the church of St Martin-in-the-Field and a giant Waterstone’s bookstore and if you’re in London over Christmas and New Year, Trafalgar Square is a great place to be to join in the revelling!
at 21 Dec 2015
Where are the coolest, hippest areas of London? Vox pops on the streets will give you Shoreditch, Hoxton and the staple on any list, Camden, but there’s a new sheriff in town! Actually it’s not that new as you’ll see when you read the blog on the website but we have acquired a fantastic new property in West Hampstead and you, our lucky readers, are the very first people in the whole world to get the chance to book your stay! Read on to find out more about London’s newest-oldest coolest area!
West Hampstead is, as the name suggests, west of Hampstead, one of London’s most exclusive (and expensive) residential areas and you should expect no change from £10m if you want a five-bedroom family home there. However just a mile or so away is West Hampstead. Bordered by Childs Hill to the north, Swiss Cottage to the east, South Hampstead to, yes correct, the south and Kilburn and Cricklewood to the west-ish, the area is a thriving, friendly community with a real, old-school Bohemian vibe. Some say it’s a yuppie stronghold and while that’s true to a certain extent, you’ll find all sorts of people buzzing around, from City-types to aged hippies to families, young urbanites and the newly crowned millennials.
By and large, West Hampstead in the London Borough of Camden can be defined by one street, West End Lane, the main drag that dissects the area and it’s one of the very best high streets in London. While the whole world is fixated with massive, sprawling shopping malls with hundreds of shops, dozens of food chains and ample parking, West Hampstead has stayed a proper, classic English high street, but it wasn’t always like that…
In the 13th century, the area was known as ‘le Rudyng’, an old English term meaning ‘woodland clearing’ and it’s believed there was a dwelling of some sort on the land at that time. It stayed ostensibly rural for another 200 years but by the mid-1500s the village was called West End, a freehold estate belonging to Kilburn Priory, a small monastic community of nuns. There was an estate house extant by the mid-1600s and it was around this time that West End Lane was so named.
If you’ve ever driven the length of West End Lane from Finchley Road to Swiss Cottage, you notice a hard left-to-right kink. It’s been there for the best part of 500 years because it was used to delineate the individual estates from each other but as time passed, more and more houses were built by London’s merchants and it turned in to a proper, working village.
From the start of the 1800s, there were three major residences in the village – West End House, West End Hall and Lauriston Lodge and interestingly, when the railways arrived 50 years later the estates were sold off to redevelop the area into a thriving commuter town. In 1879 when the railway board called the stations West Hampstead, the area became so called as well, presumably to distinguish it from the more well-known West End further into central London although this was challenged by a local estate agent who claimed he coined the name – they really don’t change, do they?!
As the 19th century turned the corner into the 20th, public amenities like street lights, gas and electricity were provided and the frontages of West End Lane started to take shape as shops.
In 1952, when celebrated German-born British architectural historian Sir Nikolaus Pevsner, best known for his 46-volume county-by-county guides The Buildings of England came to West Hampstead, he wrote that the area was only worth visiting to see the great collection of Victorian churches, going as far as saying ‘the houses and streets require no notice…’
He was right about a lot of the country but he was most certainly wrong about that!
West Hampstead is a friendly, safe, down-to-earth sort of place and somewhat of a social hub. It retains a village feel with a Bohemian vibe and if you take a stroll down West End Lane, you’ll find some excellent restaurants, cafés, cosy pubs and bars from all over the world, quirky boutiques, delicatessens and bakeries and some very cool shops selling all sorts, including art, furniture, clothes and books. You are also minutes away from the vast expanse of Hampstead Heath, a big draw for any visitor to London.
For these reason (and many others), we have acquired a fantastic property within walking distance of the Jubilee Line at West Hampstead as well as the overground station of the same name that will take you into central London in 10-15 minutes. Clickhere for the full details of these fantastic, newly-refurbished apartments, all furnished with fully fitted kitchens, large double beds and luxury bathrooms. They are perfect for tourists, corporate travellers, couples and families coming to London looking for a perfectly located apartment from where to explore our fantastic city!
Call us TODAY on 020 8420 7666 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to book your apartment in London for Christmas!
at 10 Dec 2015