With thanks to Chris Beddoe
For the last 2 years Chris chaired the Society. She guided it through some essential modernisation changes and her vision set the direction we will continue to steer. Her contribution and experience will be much missed and we wish her all the best for the future.
AGM 2016 & the Panorama of The Thames Project
© 2015 Panorama of the Thames Ltd
© 2015 Panorama of the Thames Ltd
Our AGM was held on 9th November 2016 at the Grange Rochester Hotel, Vincent Square. For further details and documents, please select the "Us" tab at the top of this page.
Following the business of the meeting, we were treated to a presentation and film of the project to restore Leigh's beautiful 1829 Panorama of the Thames and to create a current photographic panorama.
Highly recommended, please read further about this project.
St Andrew's Club - 150th Anniversary, October 2016
Henry V's Chantry Chapel Visit, October 2016
Thorney Tales (10) - Oliver Cromwell v Charles I
Most Westminster walkers are familiar with the statue of Oliver Cromwell peering imperiously from his plinth on Cromwell Green, in front of Westminster Hall. It was erected in 1895 at a cost of £500 against furious opposition from Ireland. But not many people are aware of who is looking at him from immediately across the road. It is none other than a lead bust of Charles I, who was executed on Cromwell's orders. It is affixed to the side wall of St Margaret's Church. One of two busts of him found in a Fulham salvage depot in 1945 by Hedley Hope-Nicholson, secretary of the Society of King Charles the Martyr, one of which he donated to the church in 1950. The other is now at the Banqueting House further up Whitehall, where Charles was executed. Curiously, the statue of Charles I on horse back at the southern tip of Trafalgar Square is looking towards both his place of execution and the second bust of him. Cromwell is not being allowed to forget.
Fundraising Gala Dinner September 2016
Many thanks to all who attended and supported us on Monday 26th September at The Cinnamon Club, The Old Westminster Library. With special thanks to the Hon Jacob Rees-Mogg MP for his speech, describing growing up in Smith Square, using this building as a public library and the huge refurbishment project planned at the Palace of Westminster. Also many thanks to Colin Sheaf, Chairman of Bonhams UK & Asia who auctioned some unique lots and raised an excellent amount for our Archives refurbishment. Finally, thank you to all those who donated items for the auction, as follows :
Belgrave Communications - Tour of the Old War Office, Whitehall
Bonhams UK - Lunch and a glass of champagne for 2 at Bonhams Michelin starred restaurant in Mayfair
The Cinnamon Club - Champagne breakfast for 2
Claudia & Nobuko Bespoke Hair @ Headonizm, Page Street - 2 ladies or gents haircuts
M Wines, Victoria Street - £50 private wine tasting voucher
Joanna Moncrieff - Westminster guided walk
Catherine Slater - An illustrated history of your London house/flat and street
St James's Theatre, Palace Street - 2 tickets to 'The Pianist of Willesden Lane'
St John's Smith Square - £100 voucher for a SJSS Concert
Taj St James's Court Hotel, Buckingham Gate - The Shakespeariance Dinner for 2
The Royal Parks - Rare opportunity to feed the pelicans in St James's Park, a tour of Duck Island, Cottage & Duke of York's Column.
Old War Office, 57 Whitehall
Although, slightly out of our area, this prominent building may be of interest to many. The proposal is for conversion by 57 Whitehall Sarl to a hotel and apartments.
A public exhibition was held on 5th & 6th September. If you were unable to attend and have any questions, please contact Nick Dines
Our visit to Parliament's hidden medieval places, 28th July 2016
Thorney Tales (9) - Governor of Duck Island
Thorney Tales (8) Westminster Opera House
But not completely. The foundations were kept - and are still there today. When Scotland Yard took over in 1890 some of the rooms originally built for opera stars were converted into cells for prisoners. One of the subterranean passages built as part of the opera house was connected to a platform on the District Line at Westminster Station. Another passage was reported to go to Parliament to give peers and MPs easy access to the opera. The building was put to good use by the metropolitan police. But is is sad to think that Thorney Island missed out on an opera house of its own.