25 March 2014

Do Not Alight Here, Ben Pedroche. Reviewed.

Wandering London and indulging in a touch of tube geekery in Spring sunshine? Where do I sign up?


There is something about the London tube that makes it so iconic, idiosyncratic and so fascinating. People want to eat their underground gourmet dinners on it, make journeys in order to discover secret clocks and fake houses, and endless books and blogs are written espousing the design quirks of many stations.

By turn the tube can be a source of utter frustration; delays, cancellations and weird happenings; I've sat next to Russian Generals, Tibetan Monks, a box of kittens and a group of blokes dressed head to toe in fluoro pink. But then again, that's just life in London.
 
"It is one of the many examples of London's ability to reinvent itself, always updating, while also paying tribute to the days gone by."

 

Ben Pedroche's Do Not Alight Here has taken a passion for this sinuous metallic beast, and turned it into a series of fantastic walks. I was given the book as a very late Christmas present (along with a tube Christmas Tree Bauble #lifecomplete) by a friend a few of weeks ago. With some beautifully timed spring weather we have started exploring with one of the best Christmas presents I've had in a long time. The walks are getting us into more nooks and crannies that we never knew existed, all within a stone's throw of the underground lines that make up London's artery system.

The walks are good, well paced and full of entertainingly quirky history as the vitamin D soaks in. On the way home you can take in art and quirks on the stations themselves. What more could you need?

That boring commute you have every day? Make it fun...
 
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