diamond geezer

 Wednesday, December 30, 2015

dg 2015 index

Ten memorable London jaunts in 2015
1) Helicopter over London: It may be prohibitively expensive and ridiculously brief, but flying above the Thames in a chopper is an unbelievable experience. [photos]
2) Millennium Mills: As part of Open House, I donned a hard hat and they allowed me on the roof. Fabulous. [photos]
3) Round Tower: For a true sense of place, I can heartily recommend walking around the outside of your borough (unless it's Sutton). [photos]
4) Arsenal v Dynamo Zagreb: Finally I got to watch almost an entire football match, at this Champions League stormer.
5) Charing Cross: A night out at the cinema takes on a whole new dimension when the screen is set up in an abandoned tube station.
6) Clapham South Deep Level Shelter: Apparently TfL are planning on doing a lot more trips down this wartime shelter. That's excellent news.
7) The House of Commons: It was unexpectedly simple to walk in off the street and watch a Commons debate - democracy in action.
8) Contrasts: Courtesy of a documentary from 1968, I followed Sir John Betjeman up the Edgware Road. [photos]
9) The Aftermath Dislocation Principle: The KLF's dystopian model village in a railway arch near London Bridge (open for four more weeks). [photos]
10) The Line: Against the odds, the Lower Lea Valley is now a riverside art trail. [photos]

Runners up: Dr Johnson's House, Sky Garden, Spielgelhalters, five London mazes, Hampton Court, Peninsula Square, High Tide/Low Tide, Model Traffic Area, Novelty Automation, London Eye, Forty Hill, Bethlem Museum of the Mind, the Capital, Greater London at 50, Crossrail Place, Croydon Airport Visitor Centre, Boring Conference, Dulwich Picture Gallery, Honourable Artillery Company, Garden Bridge, London Tree Week, the first air raid, Eco-Sainsburys, Heathrow Biodiversity Site, RAF Bentley Priory, Merton Abbey Chapter House, the Proms, City Hall, Edward VII pillar boxes, Bow Tesco, London Open House, Rainham Hall, Charlton Horn Fair, Woodlands Farm, three galleries, Carlyle's House, Strawberry Hill House, Scratchwood services, On Westminster Bridge, BAFTA, Northolt Park, the Blitz

Trains/stations: All Lines Challenge, Parliamentary train to West Ruislip, King's Cross subway, interchanges, Theydon Bois to Epping, Buxton Water, naming of lines, Tales from the new Overground, TfL Rail, Croxley link update, Anorak Corner, Hackney footbridge, called something else, Caution gap, Night Tube Owl, Crossrail 2, the Poppy raffle, train length, Tottenham Court Road, Emerson Park, Northern City Line, Battersea Power Station
Tube maps: new tube map, Overground map, the kitten tube map, tube walking map
Ticket offices: closing down, Bromley-by-Bow, Visitor Centres, Bow Road, final countdown, the last three
Buses: Hail and Ride, route 50, Bow Church changeover, extreme bus stops, SMS codes, A-Z of bus stops
Cablecar: Year of the Cablecar, My Single Friend, Valentine's Day, Danglestuff, extended service, number of passengers, Ruislip Lido Railway, how to avoid the rush hour

Bow Roundabout: Bow Vision, 25 flyover, new pedestrian crossings, Vision for Bow
CS2: Schedule of works, pedestrian crossings, schedule of works, September update, cycling survey, the saga of bus stop M, bus stop M continued, December update, countdown crossing
E20: Orbit annual pass, 2½ year anniversary, the real EastEnders, Since 9/11, QEOP South, ten years later, the old footbridge
Unlost rivers: River Shuttle, Mutton Brook, Dagenham Brook, Wealdstone Brook, River Moselle, River Beck, Pool River, River Pinn, Mayes Brook, Dollis Brook, River Rom, Beam River, Silk Stream
London Loop: section 13, section 15, section 2, section 24
Things to do in Outer London: tons of them - a handy guide

Three favourite foreign destinations
1) Berlin: A perfect long weekend in the German capital - both halves. It's on the list to revisit. [photos]
2) Rome: A classical treasure, enjoyed out of season, the heart of the city is utterly charming. [photos]
3) Brussels: The centre of Euro-bureaucracy is well worth a daytrip, for the Atomium alone. [photos]

Ten favourite Out-of-London destinations
1) Liverpool: On the day our Cilla was laid to rest, I visited as much of this great city (and the Wirral) as I possibly could. [photos]
2) Isle of Wight: A tube train, a steam train, a hovercraft and a clifftop theme park, all in one day? Hell yes. [photos]
3) Imber: Once a year a fleet of Routemaster buses invade Salisbury Plain. [photos]
4) Stoke-on-Trent: This fascinating faded industrial town had a lot to teach me about the state of modern Britain.
5) Beamish: It rained all day, and almost nobody else was there, but what a brilliant window on the past. [photos]
6) Poundbury: I'd heard so much about Prince Charles's model town, and in May I trod its chocolatebox streets. [photos]
7) Birmingham: There's much to see, heritage-wise, in the City of A Thousand Trades.
8) Route 11: Birmingham's 27 mile orbital bus route isn't for the faint-hearted, but if you ever have three hours spare...
9) Bournemouth: Easter Monday on the sunny south coast? Get in! [photos]
10) Runnymede: The day before the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta, I wandered around to watch the preparations.

Runners up: Bicester Village, Lichfield, Birmingham eclipse, Colchester, Ramsgate, Harwich, Dorchester, Southend, Norfolk, North-Kent-on-Sea, Durham, Chequers, Banham Zoo, Hamble, triple-header double run, Bredgar & Wormshill
Beyond London: Mole Valley, Elmbridge, Spelthorne, Slough, South Bucks

Ten other favourite posts from 2015: Creme Eggs, 901 voters, London Above, The Time Out Guide to the new London Overground, Over 1 mile from a station, Night Tubelessness, How dirty is your mug?, Midtown, Solving the housing crisis, Hats

Half of my ten favourite photos of the year:
(or all ten here)

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