Five More Odd Facts About London

Some unused Edward VIII post boxes at the Post Office Museum Stores. Image by M@.

Some unused Edward VIII post boxes at the Post Office Museum Stores. Image by M@.

1. The London postcode area contains 13 post boxes carrying the monogram of Edward VIII. Edward, you’ll recall, was only king for 10 months before his abdication in 1936, so any kind of monument to his reign is rare. You can find most of them very easily with a simple Flickr search. (With thanks to Julia Lee for this nugget.)

2. Chiswick Flyover was opened in 1959, somewhat surprisingly by Hollywood actress Jayne Mansfield. The nearby Hammersmith flyover has its own celebrity connection, though a somewhat darker one. Underworld legend has it that the body of Ginger Marks, slain by the Kray gang, is buried in the foundations.

3. Speaking of the Kray twins, they are the only people to be both imprisoned in the Tower of London AND to perform at the Royal Albert Hall. In 1951, the pair fought in a boxing tournament at the RAH. The following year, they were locked up overnight at the Tower for being absent without leave during National Service.

4. Speaking of the Tower…far from being a top-security prison its walls have been surprisingly permeable. 37 people are known to have escaped throughout its history.

5. Speaking of stealth, the special services sometimes train in parts of Holborn station and the abandoned Aldwych station (which has its own little-known rifle range).

Want five more weird facts? No problem. And here are five more.

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  • https://www.flickr.com/photos/hoosiersands HoosierSands

    Ginger is safely ensconced within the BOW flyover. :-)

  • Toots

    Aldwych / Holborn training old news if you work for London Underground. And rifle ranges are nothing new either. Most recently used (and probably mostly used) one on LU premises was based within the Baker Street Station complex.