NFT London Bloomsbury (West)

Bloomsbury (West)

Bloomsbury didn't incite and excite Britain's most prolific set of literature writers for no good reason. These streets ooze the kind of romanticised idea of London that had Virginia Woolf and E.M Forster zoned in as inspiration. Clever people have lived here in Bloomsbury and cleverer people still visit. The British Museum's Age of Illumination collection highlights the world's learners.


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Posted By:  Lee Mannion
Photo:  Lee Mannion

James Smith & Sons
What must if have felt like to be a gentleman? To stroll in London's streets while horse drawn carriages rattled by as street urchins sold papers and Dick Van Dyke popped out of a nearby chimney? For a whiff of how it might have been, step inside, sir (or madam). Here you will find the smartly dressed proprietor offering old-fashioned service to even the brashest tourist that might torture him again with that word 'quaint'. In all directions you will see umbrellas and sticks of every description and it's been that way for 140 years in its present location. It's a handsome building from the outside too, smart and imposing, these days having to suffer the indignity of a comic shop tucked under its armpit. If it had lips the upper one would be stiff in the face of Shaftesbury Avenue's incessant roar and gaudy theatre productions, its demeanour set solid against the nearby encroachment of Subway and the like. One day all establishments were like this. Step inside and be transported to another time.

Posted By:  Katie Faulkner
Photo:  Katie Faulkner

Wellcome Collection
Warning: there are anti-masturbation devices on display at the Wellcome Collection, and glass eyes; false legs; mummies; paintings of obscure and painful looking medical treatments... Have I put you off yet? No? Good! Housed in an impressive marble building on the (frankly, pretty ugly) Euston Road, the Wellcome Collection houses some of the most unusual and enlightening objects to be seen in London. Based on the collection of Henry Wellcome (check out the Medicine Man display for amazing pictures of his ever-growing moustache), the Wellcome Collection aims to tell us the story of how we think about the body, medicine, life and disease. If you still have any appetite after wandering round the displays, head to the Peaton & Byrne cafe for amazing cup-cakes! There is also a Blackwell's Bookshop. If you want to find out more about the collection and the history of medicine, join the Wellcome Library, housed in the same building--for free! It's open to everyone and has free Wi-Fi too.

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