People were bridging the Thames in the Bronze Age – 1,500 years before the Romans built London Bridge. In the 1,700 year wait for the next bridge, other crossings relied on watermen and horse ferries, as traffic jammed on London Bridge. The last 200 years have seen over 50 new crossings over and under the river. Some are great feats of engineering, some are architecturally elegant. Every crossover changes the city’s genetic code. Even now a newly designed bridge awaits a start on site. This lecture explores the way we have connected up across the Thames and what that tells us about the culture of the capital through time.
As a London walking tour guide and lecturer, Charlie highlights the social, architectural and artistic history of his home city. It is a city he is passionate about, not least because it has a historic core larger and richer than any other world city. A member of the City of Westminster Guide Lecturers Association, his talks focus on the forces that have shaped and changed this multi-faceted metropolis and the artistic and cultural heritage that this has given us. After many hundreds of walks and a four-decade long career in housing and regeneration he has absorbed a deep understanding and appreciation of the capital. He has had some fascinating vantage points like the seven years build-up to the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games where he played a role in channelling potential long-term benefits into surrounding East London communities. His publications include Spitalfields: A battle for land.