Tuesday 19 April 2011

Capturing the unremitingly normal

I suspect that these pictures say quite a lot and reveal a huge amount about the hum drum of tube travel in London.

But I quite like the slightly surreptitious nature of taking the picture - that is unwitting subjects, but not intrusive pictures (I hope).

It also reveals to the sharp observer which tube lines I frequent the most...

But crucially I notice now just how quickly observational photographs of the world today date - many of the pictures I have taken over the last 6 years of shops and people in Hampstead, West Hampstead and Kilburn have already changed and dated incredibly quickly.

Sure, shops and businesses change, but the speed with which images, fashion and styles change and the extent to which colour shifts too is fascinating. In this respect is the tube system in London with it's iconic colour and style one of the few timeless feature of life today.

I'm not sure but I guess time will tell...

Until then, I'll leave you with the unremitting notmality of life on the tube in the mid-morning of a weekday.

Sunday 17 April 2011

Is this art?

All I really know is that I saw this on the back wall of Boradhurst Gardens, from West Hampstead Tube station and thought wow!

It stands out and is impressive and colourful - I was also interested to be joined by three other travellers who were admiring it...

The reality is railway graffiti is the norm now but with some basic imagination it could be developed... some of the graffiti is abusive and incredibly tatty and undermines a building and the area.

So perhaps as part of the London elections next year there could be an intelligent engagement on the issue and the tat cleared away and the space yielded up for better, more artistic features - such as this one?

Friday 15 April 2011

Triggered by my birthday

I've just had my birthday and one of the kind presents I received was wrapped up in paper that is an early map of the London rail network - or London Electric Railways as it is described.

The interesting bit - beyond the fact that it's pre-Harry Beck (so it's prob about 1908 or so...) are in the station names.

Looking at the station names in Blue to the right - nothing very different there.

But the Metropolitan Railway (the dominant line in red) has a number of interesting features:
  • Marlboro Road - no longer a station, although Marlborough Place and Marlborough Hill survive
  • Finchley Road and South Hampstead is now just Finchley Road station
  • Kilburn Brondesbury is now Kilburn Jubilee station
  • Willesden Green and Cricklewood is now just Willesden Green - indeed I'm not sure Cricklewood would today see it as their local station...

But more faint and a bit more revealing is some of the other rail lines:
  • Loudoun Road station is South Hampstead today onn the Euston Watford line
  • Kilburn and Maida Vale is Kilburn High Road
  • Queen's Park & West Hampstead is just Queen's Park

Moving up the map:
  • Brondesbury (Edgware Road) is just Brondesbury on the Overground line
  • West End Lane is just West Hampstead

What a great piece of wrapping paper!!

Wednesday 13 April 2011

Calling all drinkers of Kilburn out there

I'm just involved in a small project on Kilburn and commerce and wanted to check if I had the correct list of current functioning pubs. So the short question is are there any others or just the 18 I have listed here

Queen’s Arms, 1 Kilburn High Road, NW6 5SE

The Westbury, 34 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 5UA

The Old Bell, 38 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 5UA

Betsy Smith, 77 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 6HY

The Cock, 125 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 6JH

The Golden Egg, 155 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 7HU

The Coopers Arms, 164 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 4JD

The Kingdom, 229 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 7JG

The Colin Campbell, 266 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 2BY

The Good Ship, 289 Kilburn High Road, London NW6 7JR

The Black Lion, 274 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 2BY

The Kings Head, 307-311 Kilburn High Road, London, NW6 7JR

North London Tavern, 375, Kilburn High Rd, London, NW6 7QB

Brondes Age, 328, Kilburn High Rd, London, NW6 2QN

Powers Bar, 332, Kilburn High Rd, London, NW6 2QN

The Priory Tavern, Belsize Road, London, NW6 4BT

The Prince of Wales, 11a Cambridge Gardens, London, NW6 5AE

The Prince of Wales, 101 Willesden Lane, London, NW6 7SD

Monday 11 April 2011

So farewell The Cock Tavern Theatre

Fans of theatre, live performance and Kilburn will be disappointed to hear that the Cock Tavern Theatre has closed - it would seem indefinately due to failing the tests required by health and safety fire escape legislation.

It's a real shame and a loss to the local area. Let's hope the Council is pro-active and give the team the help they need to get the show back on the road again...

This is the news as it broke in the Evening Standard:

"Two productions have been suspended at the Cock Tavern Theatre, in Kilburn, because the height of the steps on its staircases do not comply with council rules.

An inspection of the 56-seat theatre, which is above a pub, also found that it had no entertainment licence."