Today was a perfect London day. The sun was out and I had a rare weekend off so I joined Jen and friends at the southbank for the Chocolate Festival. I’m not even that big a fan of chocolate but who can resist the southbank in nice weather.
The festival appeared to have less stalls than when I attended last year year but there was still a huge crowd to content with. Last year I had churros but opted for a brownie from this stall.
After our snack we decided to do a self guided walk. Jen and I were armed with books featuring various walks around the city but opted for a walk titled Passport to Pimlico from my book London Walks Vol. 2.
I’ve been wanting to do this walk ever since purchasing the book. An excerpt introducing this walk: ‘Pimlico is anonymous. You need no passport to get into it. Pimlico is No Man’s Land. And from No Man’s Land you can move in any direction.’ Glenys Roberts, Metropolitan Myths.
So many of London’s neighbourhoods are loaded with lifestyles. Think Notting Hill, Hampstead, Chelsea, Fulham, Shoreditch, Islington, Clerkenwell, Stoke Newington or Clapham and rightly or wrongly, each area readily delivers a type of person to match. Pimlico eludes such pigeon-hole identity. It is a place to live or work, not one to be seen in, for no one will notice you there.
For some reason this intrigued me because it is true that most places in London are type cast and to find a pretty neighbourhood which was undefined urged me to check it out. The tour starts at Pimlico tube station and is about 1-2 hours long. We went, we saw, and enjoyed the gorgeous surroundings. At times it felt like we were in another city.
This sculpture by Sir Eduardo Paolozzi acts a tube vent cover. Born of Italian parents in Edinburgh in 1924, Paolozzi was part of the Independent Group credited with introducing Pop Art to these shores in the 1950s. He had a one man show at the Tate in 1971 and was responsible for the colourful mosaics at Tottenham Court Road tube station.
This statue of Thomas Cubitt was unveiled in 1995 by the Duke of Westminster. Cubitt was a prolific master builder. After building houses in Bloomsbury and much of Belgravia in the 1820s and 30s, he turned his hand to South Belgravia, as Pimlico was once known. One of his great great grand daughters is Camila Parker-Bowles.
We ended the tour early to grab a bite to eat at the Cubitt House which was about a 10 minute walk from this statue. Pimlico is quaint, pretty, and unassuming. A great way to spend a Sunday afternoon.