We thought 2010 had been a big year for Londonist. It turns out that 2011 was even bigger. We saw our busiest day in December plus a steady increase in page views to well over one million views per month for the last couple of months of the year. The year has been a bit of a rollercoaster for London and its inhabitants; riots, occupations and royal weddings, not to mention all the quirkiness that makes us love it so much. We’ve had some fantastic content as always so here’s our end-of-year top 10 posts by page views.
10. Mapped: Fictional Stations On The London Underground
What do the Hickory Road, Hobbs End and Wells Lane tube stations have in common? None of them exist except in film and TV world and it seems we weren’t the only ones who enjoy spotting made-up stations.
9. Inside A Ghost Tube Station: Brompton Road
Occasionally, we’re lucky enough to get invited along to see things that we don’t normally get to see every day and this year we got a guided tour of one of London’s many ghost stations, Brompton Road. We even made a video for you.
8. Top 10 Spy Sites in London
Secret stuff seems to capture our imaginations and the top 10 spy sites was no exception. From MI5′s garage to decommissioned deep level shelters, we winkled them out for Londonist readers.
7. Unbuilt London: Bridges To Nowhere And Mad Masterplans
If you thought Boris Island was barking and the cable car was crazy, they’re nothing compared to some of the plans for London which have fallen quietly by the wayside over the years. Like the glass bridge, for example.
6. London’s Oddest Signs: A Miscellany
We rounded up some of the city’s strangest signs and gave readers the task of guessing where they came from.
5. New Banksy Street Art Around London
The one man page-view machine, artist Banksy, has been busy this year with Poplar, Spitalfields and the National Gallery being the latest recipients of his clandestine work. The St Paul’s Occupy camp also found themselves in possession of a Banksy in October.
4. The Origins Of London Tube Names
Tube-based etymology from author Mark Forsyth.
3. Unbuilt London: Tall Towers And Strange Skyscrapers
Our series on how London could have looked if the planners had their way has been one of Londonist’s most popular. Here we bring you pyramids, a colossal green tower shaped like a dildo and an 80m statue of Britannia in south-east London — just a few of the schemes which never made it off the drawing board.
2. Unbuilt London: The Transport Schemes That Never Were
Another Unbuilt London, this time transport schemes, demonstrating that there are few things that Londoners love more than talking about transport. Our favourite is the runways on stilts above the Thames at Westminster Bridge.
1. In Pictures: The New Bus For London
We were among the first to post pictures of the new Routemaster bus, often dubbed (like much else) with the prefix of ‘Boris’. At £1.6m each they ain’t cheap but they are pretty.
Other notable posts have been the hotly-debated Shoreditch container shopping experience, Boxpark (25,000 views) and early pictures of Stratford’s monster mall Westfield (21,000 views). Our coverage of August’s riots achieved nearly 19,000 views as everyone turned to the internet to find out what the hell was happening to their capital city while 15,000 people discovered what makes Londoners really really angry. Thankfully, we were also on hand to provide a list of peaceful places to chill out (20,000 views).
With the whopping 93,000 views of the new bus, it’s no surprise to learn that its launch day, Friday 16th of December was our busiest day. Comparing these figures to those from last year, the huge increase is apparent.
As before, thanks to everyone who’s read Londonist, liked us, Tweeted us, commented on us and contributed to us. Happy 2012!