Out and About

Earlier Walks and Visits



The Historic Houses, Gardens, and Walks Gay Group


Pictures courtesy of London-GB.com

The group aims to bring together gay people who are interested in the history and architecture of London and the Home Counties. It has been operating for over a decade. The programme consists mainly of walks in the various districts of London, though there may also be occasional visits to historic properties, museums and gardens.

There is no membership fee nor any charge for the walks. Also, there is no need to book in advance The emphasis is on informality. In summer the walks usually begin at about 2.00 p.m. and in winter at 1.15 p.m. They normally last about a couple of hours, or so, usually finishing at a convenient pub. (The pub attendance is not compulsory!) Typically 30 plus people attend these walks.

Walks normally start and finish near an Underground, Overground, DLR, or Rail station, though very occasionally a short bus journey may be involved.



Sunday 13 September 2015 - The Flaming City - Monument to Farringdon, tracing the route of the Great Fire of 1666. Click here for details.

Sunday 11 October 2015 - Victoria Street: Westminster Abbey to Westminster Cathedral

Sunday 8 November 2015 - Kensal Green Cemetery

Sunday 13 December 2015 - London's East End: Shadwell to Old Street


The Flaming City Walk: Monument to Farringdon – Sunday 13 September 2015

© Copyright Richard Croft

Licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

This linear walk traces the route of the Great Fire of 1666, an event that created a demand for new furniture! Londoners in the 17th century must have wondered what had hit them when, within months of fighting off the Great Plague, a fire of monumental proportions began at a bakery in Pudding Lane. It took five days to contain the fire, partly because of the high number of houses with timber roofs and the rudimentary fire-fighting equipment available at the time. The event at least offered an opportunity to give the City a facelift but, due to the sheer cost and to property rights, most of the rebuilding followed the original street lines. It did, however, create a safer, more sanitary capital than before, and with the new houses came a demand for new furniture, which was excellent news for cabinet-makers. Perhaps one of the most common items produced by a cabinet-maker was the table, candle-stands and mirror ensemble, which had been introduced from France and soon became a standard item of furniture in many English homes. Cabinets were made by skilled craftsmen and therefore more expensive. However, the same techniques were later used for chests of drawers. To meet heavy demands furniture was, for the first time, offered across a range of quality and price. Brisk trade with North America, the East Indies, East India and the Far East introduced new styles such as lacquer-ware. Although France led the way in furniture design, Oriental items such as screens were very popular. Most Londoners made do with 'japanned' furniture that was varnished in a cheaper imitation of lacquer, many of which survive today. Cane chairs too, were introduced from the Far East and most middle class homes had one or more of these so-called 'English chairs'. With the demand for furniture of all types and to match all pockets, the working life of a tradesman in the late 1600s was a happy one indeed.

Please meet at 2.0 p.m. at The Monument on Monument Street. The nearest tube station is Monument (District line). Alternatively walk down King William Street from Bank station (Central line).

For detailed directions of the walk click here.


Transport for London Journey Planner

To be added to the circulation list for regular updates email: info@outandabout-london.org

Tel: 020 8989 5295 or 07785773917


Updated: 15 August 2015