After leaving London we popped to Wimbledon as it was near where we were staying. We didn’t get to spend much time there as we wanted to get on the road, so we didn’t really see much of the town. The Waterstones is fairly small – at the time of writing this blog, their webpage doesn’t say anything about the store, which is fairly unusual as there is usually some information!
This was our last day in London for the bank holiday weekend. After spending time in Islington we walked to St Pancras Station. Inside is a branch of Hatchard’s, which is owned by Waterstones. Perfect for grabbing a last-minute read before getting on a train!
Even if you’re not heading off on a train, St Pancras is worth a visit. The building was designed by William Henry Barlow and was opened in October 1868. It is gorgeous, both inside and out.
The Outside of St Pancras.
Isn’t it stunning!
And the inside
Sir John Betjeman Statue
In the 1960s, St Pancras was under threat of redevelopment – Betjeman was a very vocal opponent of the scheme, which was, thankfully, cancelled. This statue by artist Martin Jennings is a tribute to Betjeman saving the station.
After a visit to the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square in the morning, we jumped on the River Bus at Embankment and travelled up the river to Greenwich. Our first stop was the busy, bustling Waterstones, which has a prominent position in Greenwich village and is set over two floors.
Neither of us had been to this part of London for years, so after our visit we went for a wander round the area. We walked up to the Royal Observatory, but as it was late in the day we didn’t go in – we plan to return one day to do both this and the National Maritime Museum (which is free!). The views from the top across to London are spectacular.
The Royal Observatory
I was reading My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell on this trip.
A weekend in London is always a treat, especially when the sun is shining! We decided to explore a couple of areas that we hadn’t been to before, so we hopped on a bus and made Camden our first stop. What a wonderful, bustling area – we particularly loved the Lock and market areas. We stopped for a coffee at Pret A Manger on arrival and happily it was situated right opposite Waterstones!
The building was originally a furniture store called Bowmans owned by two bothers and built in 1864 – when the building burned down in the 1890s it was rebuilt as a fantastic red-bricked building with mosaics above the windows that still survive.
Decorated Shops – Chalk Farm Road, Camden
Amy Winehouse Statue, Camden Market
We spent a wonderful week in the Channel Islands celebrating our 30th anniversary – three days in Guernsey followed by four in Jersey. St Helier, Jersey’s capital, has a branch of Waterstones – the only one on the islands. Whilst there, I treated myself to a couple of Gerald Durrell books – he founded Jersey zoo in 1959 – My Family and Other Animals (which I have read before) and Birds, Beasts and Relatives.
Some pictures from our holiday…
Statue of Victor Hugo, St Peter Port, Guernsey
On Guernsey, all the post and pillar boxes are this pretty blue colour
Fort Doyle, Guernsey
La Corbière Lighthouse, Jersey
The ‘Lalique’ Church, St Matthew’s, Jersey
I stayed with some friends in Walthamstow for the weekend. Unfortunately we didn’t get much time to explore the area, but we did find time to pop to the Waterstones to check it out! It’s in a modern shopping centre and spread over two floors. There looks to be quite a bit to do in the area. Not only does Walthamstow boast the longest outdoor street market in Europe with more than 350 stalls, but it’s also home to a museum to the textile designer William Morris and the Vestry House Museum, which is somewhere I’d definitely like to visit.
Just some of the lovely people I spent the weekend with – Sal, Gaynor and James
After leaving my friend I had some spare time so I headed for The Economists’ Bookshop, founded in 1946 in a joint partnership between The Economist & the London School of Economics and part of the Waterstones chain. The building set in the heart of the LSE and not far from the building rumoured to have inspired Dickens’ book The Old Curiosity Shop – I liked the inside of the store for its quirky layout. (There is a great second-hand bookshop next door called Alpha Books which is definitely worth a visit at the same time!).