An A - Z
of London

Capital Numbers

An alphabetical guide
to London


A is for 'orses
B is for Bow Bells
C is for 21st Century
D is for Dome
E is for Escalator
F is for Fog
G is for GLC
H is for History
I is for Information
J is for Jellied Eels
K is for Keeping Safe
L is for London Transport
M is for Money
N is for Nightbus
01 for London
P is for Plague
Q is for Queen
R is for Red Route
S is for Streets of London
T is for Thames
U is for Underground
V is for Villages
W is for WestEnders
X is for Charing X
Y is a Year in London
Z is for Zoo

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H

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H is for History


A brief history of London


43 AD: The Romans invade Britain, build a fort on the Thames and call it Londinium, little realising that one day this new settlement will be at the centre of a great world empire, much like their own.

61: Boadicea pops down on a weekend break from East Anglia and burns the city to the ground.

407: The curtain goes down on ‘Romans in Britain’ after a record-breaking West End run.

457: The Saxons invade, only to be kicked out by the Viking invasion of 851, only to be kicked out by the Britons under King Alfred in 886, only to be kicked out by the Danish invasion of 1013, only to be kicked out by William the Conqueror invading in 1066. Told you this was a brief history.

1078: With classic medieval simplicity, William builds a white tower called the White Tower.

1381: Dick Whittington is elected Mayor, easily beating Jeffrey Archer.

1535: Henry VIII executes Thomas More and uses his head to decorate London Bridge.

1665: The Great Plague kills 70 000 people but leaves buildings standing.

1666: The Great Fire of London lays waste 13 000 buildings but leaves only six people not standing.

1814: Global warming kicks in as the last ever Frost Fair is held on the frozen Thames.

1829: The Metropolitan Police Force start to fight their losing battle.

1863: The world’s first underground railway is built, with much of the signalling still in use today.

1907: The last public flogging of a Londoner convicted of failing to wear a hat in a built-up area.

1952: Lethal smog descends on the capital, leading to the discovery of asthma.

1986: The completion of the M25, merely the latest city wall to protect the capital from invaders.