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18 November 2014

#giffgaffsnaps with best london walks

last tuesday night laura and i headed down to waterloo after work to attend another smashing event hosted by the joe bloggers network; a walking photography tour around the southbank with thanks to giff gaff and best london walks. we met up with katy, becky and emsy (and squibbbbbby who was working), before meeting our guides for the night. representing giff gaff and full of mobile phone photography knowledge was the charming phil, and representing bestLDNwalks with all the useless facts about my adopted city, was the woman behind the brand, the ever charismatic charlotte.

we kicked off along the southbank, and up onto waterloo bridge. there we learned the bridge was made by women (wahey!) during the early war days, and that the curves along the top were designed to mimic those of the red phone boxes (actually, i think vice versa. you'd have to ask charlotte; there were a lot of us - 65 in total, and it was hard to hear). from there we walked down to the southbank skate park and watched grown adults lark about on skateboards while a slew of london's finest (us) stood by and took pictures.

then it started to rain, and i started to get annoyed (uncommon). we wandered along southbank a little longer, and up under the london eye - dodging the tourists as we walked (yes, even in the rain). we cut back into waterloo from underneath the tracks, and found ourselves in the banksy graffiti tunnel on leake street. i'd been on one of charlotte's walks before, and lord knows i've seen enough of the southbank to satisfy the rest of my life, but i'd never been down this tunnel. never even knew it was there in fact.

story goes that after banksy did what banksy is famous for (ironic street art) and installed the "authorised graffiti area" sign (even though it wasn't) at the entrance to the tunnel, people took it seriously and the tunnel soon became known as 'can alley' (for all the paint cans left laying around). the city of westminster tried to section the tunnel off as derelict a couple years ago, so the topbloke that he is, he bloody well bought the tunnel off the squares, and now you're encouraged to spray, all day, errday. cool, huh? so spray we did. look mum, i'm a rebel!

by now it was pissing down and i had had enough. maybe i was high from paint fumes. actually, that's pretty likely, so we bailed. the show was ending soon enough, and i was too close to the train to consider walking away from it. and i could hear my nice, warm bed calling.

thanks ever so much to giff gaff for lending us phil for the night, and to joe's for inviting so many damned incredible people that i didn't get a damn second with the man. oh well, maybe next time?

Add your comment

  1. I love finding sections of London you never knew existed. That's why it's the greatest city in the world for gems like this!

  2. That still sounds amazing even with the rain! I love street art. My neighborhood is full of graffiti and murals its so colorful and fun.

  3. Oh, it does sound like a great thing to do!! I'd never heard of this tunnel tbf.


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