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8 results for charles ii found within the Blog

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Bay of Plenty

Posted by Guy Fairbank on 12th May 2020 in History | hudson bay,trading,city of london,bishopsgate,canada,hudson's bay company,north america,radisson,charles ii,hasilwood house,skinners,beaver,winnipeg
In the mid 1600s two Frenchmen, the grandly named Médard Chouart, Sieur des Groseilliers (1618-1696) and his brother-in-law Pierre Ésprit Radisson (c. 1640-1710), were exploring the vast interior of what is now northern Canada. Working their way inland via the many rivers that flow into Hudson Bay, they came across a wealth of fur, in particular on a rodent with a large paddle-shaped tail and prominent teeth. “Ideal for coats,” they reported, and went to find a backer. Their fellow countrymen in Québec and France showed little interest but the English settlers were far more receptive.  The two intrepid trappers travelled to England and managed to ga...
 

Pride of London

Posted by fairbankguy on 15th October 2015 in Christianity | lion sermon,st katherine cree,leadenhall street,city ceremony,gayer,lord mayor
   Every October for the past 366 years an unusual service has taken place in the church of St. Katharine Cree, in Leadenhall Street. It is the Lion Sermon. On the 16th October 1643, while travelling to Arabia on a trading mission, Alderman Sir John Gayer became separated from his companions and, as night fell, became aware that a lion was lurking. But it did not attack him. In the morning he was found sleeping peacefully, with the lion’s footprints all around him. Like Daniel in the lion’s den, he had survived. In gratitude for his survival, Sir John made various gifts to good causes and in his will established an annual commemorative servi...
 

Ding Dong!

Posted by fairbankguy on 30th July 2015 in Government & Organisation | parliament,elizabeth tower,big ben,tower,westminster,houses of parliament,charles barry,pugin
Thanks to my fellow City of London Guide Lindsay Schussman, today I enjoyed a visit to The Elizabeth Tower, part of the Palace of Westminster, which houses Big Ben. It’s a stiff climb up the 334 steps but it’s worth it! To see the famous bell and its 4 smaller companions, then hear them chime (wearing ear plugs!) was unforgettable. The 96m tower was designed by architect charles Barry, assisted by the Gothic genius that was AWN Pugin. The bell itself was not the first one; that 16 tonne one, built in Stockton-on-Tees, was damaged, so the Whitechapel Foundry made a new one. The new 13.7 tonne bell was hauled up by hand, 63m up to the belfry....
 

Waltham’s Cross

Posted by fairbankguy on 25th October 2016 in sculpture |
A few miles north of London, just off the M25, lie the market towns of Waltham Abbey and nearby Waltham Cross. Both settlements have seen better days but they’re full of history that stretches back 1,000 years. Waltham Cross takes its name from one of the Eleanor Crosses that King Edward I erected after his wife Eleanor of Castile (d. 1290) died at Harby, Nottinghamshire.    Eleanor and Edward were happily married for 36 years and she bore him 14 children. When she died he was devastated and planned to erect a series of funeral monuments, wherever the funeral cortege stopped on its way to Westminster Abbey. Of the 12 he erected, from...
 

The Senate and Students of London

Posted by fairbankguy on 25th November 2017 in Higher Education | art-deco,senate-house,ww2
  Dominating the leafy and literary area of Bloomsbury is the monumental Senate House. It’s part of the University of London and was built in the 1930s by that great architect of the London Underground, charles Holden. It was built on land given by the Dukes of Bedford and funded by, amongst others, the Rockefeller family, Marks and Spencer and City livery companies. The shell of the building was made from steel, encased by hardy Portland stone, which has remarkable anti-pollution qualities: it’s only been cleaned twice in its 80 years. When it was completed in 1937 the Senate House was the tallest building (64m high) after St Paul’s an...
 

A Gem of a Gallery

Posted by fairbankguy on 1st June 2018 in Christianity | diamond-jubilee,funeral-effigies,monarchy,treasures,westminster,westminster-abbey
High in the triforium, some 16m above the nave of Westminster Abbey, are The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Galleries. It’s accessed by the Weston Tower, designed by Surveyor to the Fabric Ptolemy Dean and the first structural addition to the 1,000 year-old Abbey since the 1700s.  As you ascend the 108 steps look for the 17 bands of stone used in its construction, which includes Purbeck marble, Reigate stone, Kentish ragstone and Caen stone - different building material used throughout the Abbey’s history.  When you finally reach the top you’re in for a treat, for here the Abbey has on display some of its finest treasures. The galleries are div...
 
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