Saturday, 31 December 2016

Review of the year

It's that time again: as a new year arrives, we take a look back at the most popular posts of 2016.  

Top five of the year

Archaeology certainly caught our attention: at five is a near-secret piece of Roman history, the undeservedly little-known Billingsgate Roman Baths. (If you haven't seen them yet, look out for tours in 2017.) By contrast, it was a little bit of speculation on the archaeology of the future that took fourth place. 

In third is a Paris urinal - the city's last Vespasienne. It's not glamorous, but it's an intriguing piece of social history complete with prison walls and urine taxes. 

Both the most popular posts visited hidden Tube locations. Second place goes to the ghost platforms of Charing Cross Underground station, closed when the Jubilee Line ceased calling here in 1999. 

And the most popular post of 2016 was a look at the extraordinary underground 'museum' of posters below Euston Station. Who could resist the appeal of this colourful snapshot of 1962, its films, fashion, and trains? 

All-time top five

In fifth place is the Middlesex Hospital Chapel, seen from the top of BT Tower when it was a lonely island in a sea of mud awaiting development. That post really needs to be read alongside the more recent update, showing the beautifully restored interior. (We won't mention the renaming of the chapel by the developers.)

A trip to Chichester gives us the fourth most popular post, on Shippams of sandwich paste fame. Their wishbone clock is a far more appealing piece of the past than the third-place entry, an example of facadism which is among London's ugliest

The Paris catacombs - whose popularity may come largely from image searches for skulls - have dropped into second place this year. First place now goes to a post for which I (or at least, my lungs) suffered: a walk through the Rotherhithe Tunnel. I wasn't breaking any rules, but the tunnel really isn't pedestrian-friendly, so I'm glad people are making a virtual visit instead!

Happy reading, and a happy new year to you all!

1 comment:

HughB said...

A very Happy New Year to you too - and many thanks for all the entertaining and informative posts, and all the splendid photographs!! May 2017 bring as many more!!!