On this day: the Victoria Memorial is Unveiled

Inauguration_du_Monument_de_la_reine_Victoria The Victoria Memorial's unveiling ceremony outside Buckingham Palace London 16th May 1911

The Victoria Memorial, which stands outside Buckingham Palace at the end of The Mall in London, was unveiled in a ceremony on the 16th of May, 1911.

The monument honours Queen Victoria, whose long reign had come to an end with her death a decade earlier.

The ceremony was presided over by both by King George V and his first cousin, Wilhelm II of Germany. Both men were grandsons of Victoria.

Following the ceremony it was revealed the memorial’s sculpture, Thomas Brock, was to be knighted.

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On this day: a Coronation in London

The Coronation of George VI, The Mall, 12 May 1937. The Royal Coach left for Westminster Abbey for the Coronation of King George and Queen Elizabeth. Picture taken from the roof of Bucki

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This photograph, taken from the rooftop of Buckingham Palace in London, shows the coronation procession of the new king, George VI and his queen Elizabeth on the 12th of May, 1937. The Royal Coach is seen leaving for Westminster Abbey, where the coronation was to happen.

George would be king until his death in 1952. His daughter Elizabeth inherited the throne in February of that year.

On this day: an Air Display in London

LONDON_DEFENDED_Torchlight_and_Searchlight_spectacleLondon Defended Torchlight and Searchlight spectacle, The Stadium Wembley May 9 to June 1, 1925. Red Arrows.

The British Empire Exhibition ran at Wembley Park in London over 1924 and 1925, showcasing Britain’s might to any world leaders who thought to overpower them.

One of the displays was an air display simulating battle-like conditions, and featuring No. 32 Squadron in a show titled “London Defended”. The display was first shown on the 9th of May, 1925 and continued until the 1st of June. Part of the show involved blank ammunition being fired into the arena.

This display was a precursor to today’s Red Arrows, the Royal Air Force’s aerial display team that was founded in the 1960s and today still performs.

On this day: London Library is Bombed

After a number of near misses, London Library was finally hit by German bombs on the 23rd of February, 1944.

The library, founded in 1841, is on St James’s Square.

On 23rd February 1944 The London Library came within a few feet of being totally destroyed. Bombed Second World War Two0241_-_The_Art_Room_19440238_-_

On 23rd February 1944 The London Library came within a few feet of being totally destroyed. Bombed Second World War Two

On 23rd February 1944 The London Library came within a few feet of being totally destroyed. Bombed Second World War Two 0238_-_The_Sackler_Study_1944

On this day: Britain’s Infamous Winter

Called the Big Freeze of 1963, the United Kingdom shivered through an infamous winter that began in 1962. It was one of the coldest winters in history.

This photograph is dated the 14th of February, and was taken in the London Borough of Barnet, in the city’s north.

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North_Finchley_High_Road_geograph-3384741-by-Ben-BrooksbankView southward at Kenver Avenue, near Tally-Ho Corner. That winter the snow in London lasted for two months. 14th February 1963

Winter 1916

Pow_Winter_Recreation_Art_IWMART17084 German Prisoners of War Recreation Alexandra Palace London 1916 First World War One

This painting, from the collection of the Imperial War Museum, shows German prisoners of war playing in the snow outside Alexandra Palace in London.

At the beginning of the First World War the area housed Belgian refugees, but as the war continued it was transformed into an internment camp for Germans and Austrians.

Thomas Hardy’s Early Career

Thomas Hardy, OM (2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928) was an English novelist and poet. A Victorian realist in the tradition of George Eliot, influenced both in his novels and in his poetry

Today marks ninety years since the death of Thomas Hardy, famed English novelist of the Victorian era.

His famous works include Far from the Madding Crowd (1874), The Mayor of Casterbridge (1886), Tess of the d’Urbervilles (1891), and Jude the Obscure (1895).

However, when Dorset-born Hardy first came to London, he was not making money as a writer.

St Pancras Railway Station London Victorian Era the year it opened 1868

In 1868

One of his jobs was to clear graves to make way for the massive new St Pancras railway station, which opened in 1868.

The Hardy Tree in the churchyard of St Pancras Old Church, growing up between gravestones moved there while Thomas Hardy was working here. London Victorian Era.

Headstones were moved for the build, and stacked together. Today, there is a famous spot called the “Hardy Tree“, where – for the past 1.5 centuries – a tree has grown around them.