call the midwife, Chummy, Downton Abbey, Harry Gordon Selfridge, Holmes & watson, Jack the Ripper, Julian Fellowes, Mr Selfridge, Ripper Street, Selfridges, Sherlock, Study in Pink, Whitechapel TV series
Here are 5 walks in London themed on TV series.
Call the Midwife Walk: The walk starts at the nuns’ and nurses’ headquarters, the real-life Nonnatus House, still there today. You see Chrisp Street market and hear how a young nun had a saucy joke played on her by a naughty stallholder. There’s also housing unchanged since the twin stall holders who henpecked their shared husband; the Anglo-Spanish family of 27; the white woman with a white husband who had a black baby; the grateful old soldier, all lived there. There’s also a surviving section of the workhouse where the strange old woman lived for years. You also hear about Chummy and how and where they film the series. And there’s other history too such as charming old warehouses and a fantastic view of the Thames from a tidal inlet, where you can imagine the scene where Sister Evangelina clambers with her bike over boats to cross the water rather than ride all the way around.
Mr Selfridge Walk: Harry Gordon Selfridge had such an interesting life it’s amazing it took so long for anyone to make a TV series of it. You start of course with his store Selfridge’s and hear the story of how he built it. And then it’s a walk through opulent Mayfair where he lived and loved, while you hear the story of his OTT life in London, surrounded by the rich & famous. You hear of the real life women whom the TV characters Lady Mae & Ellen Love are based on, along with other real women, many of whom were femme fatales far more exotic and extraordinary than any TV character! And you’re told how Mr S set the template for how we shop today, and why the specific logistics of having a shop in 1909 Oxford Street led to a front of store layout that all department stores worldwide have since copied.
Ripper Street & Whitechapel TV Series Walk: This walk incorporates the late 19th century Whitechapel reproduced in Ripper Street and real old murder sites, not just from Jack the Ripper but from other murders in history that are featured in the Whitechapel TV series. There are also scary modern sites used in that series. You also see the real Brown Bear pub, a studio version of which appears in Ripper Street. And you’ll see Leman Street ‘cop shop’ which is mentioned in both programmes. And if you’re wondering about the photo above, it’s of the real ‘Ripper Street’ both in the 19th & 21st centuries thanks to photoshop. We show you today’s version and the interesting history in its area.
Sherlock Walk: The Sherlock sights are a little scattered so you’ll need a travelcard/oyster so we can jump on the tube. You start at the hospital which is used throughout the series and is where Sherlock fakes his death by apparently jumping off the roof. And we see how he may have done it. Then it’s on to the show’s 221b where we can have a cuppa in the café if you wish. Then it’s Soho to walks its maze of streets to see how Sherlock & Watson were able to chase down on foot the escaping taxi driver in Study in Pink. You also see where they film Mycroft’s club, where Moriarty had a bomb victim standing; the rooftop where Sherlock gazes out over London and you hear why you don’t see the Blind Banker’s Chinatown. You finish at a themed pub which has a fine reconstruction of Holmes’ study.
The Real Downton Abbey Walk: Remember this is a walk in London so you don’t get to see the great house used in Downton because that’s out in Berkshire. But you certainly walk past the great houses of London’s most exclusive 18th & 19th century addresses, where the upper and upper middle classes and their servants lived. And you’ll hear all about what it was REALLY like to be a servant in a great house at such time. You also see locations used in Downtown and Upstairs Downstairs, including the house in the latter. You also see the present day’s most exclusive addresses where Russian oligarchs and celebrities still have “the help” wait on them hand and foot. And you see a place where an American heiress was married to an English lord, which gave Julian Fellowes the idea for Downton.