This Week In London’s History
- Monday – 2 September 1666: The Great Fire of London starts at a bakery on Pudding Lane. It would burn for three days, destroying over 13,000 buildings.
- Tuesday – 3 September 1878: Passenger steamer Princess Alice collides with cargo ship Bywell Castle on the Thames near Woolwich Pier. All of the 700 passengers of the Princess Alice are either thrown into the heavily polluted river or trapped below the decks of the sinking vessel. Fewer than 100 passengers survive.
- Wednesday – 4 September 1899: Moorfields Eye Hospital (known at the time as the Royal London Ophthalmic Hospital) is opened at its current site on City Road (having previously been situated on Moorfields since 1805, hence the name). It would become the largest eye hospital in the world.
- Thursday – 5 September 1975: An IRA bomb explodes in the lobby of the Hilton Hotel on Park Lane in central London, causing 2 fatalities and injuries to a further 63 people.
- Friday – 6 September 1997: The funeral of Princess Diana takes place at Westminster Abbey. The service is watched on television by millions of people worldwide, as Elton John performs a re-worked version of ‘Candle in the Wind’ and Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer, delivers a controversial speech criticising the media and (indirectly) the Royal Family.
Random London Quote Of The Week
If you do not want to live among wicked people, do not live in London.
Richard of Devizes (Benedictine monk, 1192)