My Vintage London - Vintage Guide writer Gemma King
The Vintage Guide to London: Do you ever go to vintage events? If so, which ones would you recommend?
Gemma King: I love a good bit of vintage jazz, and have found The Spice of Life at Cambridge Circus holds some great gigs to suit my taste. Le Quecumbar in Battersea also has some good vintage jazz acts, such as “The Famous Four” they’re four splendid chaps, clad in finely tailored suits, who play some great ’30s jazz classics with a fresh modern twist.
The Vintage Guide to London also recently held it’s first Club night Throwback which is also my cup of tea. Drinking a G&T whilst playing Edwardian dress up… what’s not to like?!
The Vintage Guide to London: What are your favourite vintage places in London?
Gemma King: There are some wonderful Art Deco buildings scattered about London, and South East London holds some marvellous hidden treasures. Further West there’s Ealing Village (pictured), which was built by Ealing Studios for their stars. As an Ealing comedy fanatic this place is very dear to my heart… how I wish I could secure a mortgage to own a flat in this place!
I heard that during WWII the studios were afraid that the flats would get bombed as they were so a prominent. But they had a lucky escape as German fighter pilots saw the big white buildings and presumed them to be a hospital!
As a travel new broadcaster I’m also extremely interested in old London Transport, and there’s some great walks along disused railway lines, with so many hidden all over town, it’s a great way to explore an area and have a ramble on a lazy Sunday. I would also suggest hopping on a Routemaster, the number 9 runs from Aldwych to the Royal Albert Hall and offers some interesting sights. Climb aboard, head upstairs, nab the back seat and enjoy the view! It’s like having your own private tour of London.
The Vintage Guide to London: What’s the must do vintage thing in London?
Gemma King: Once a month I head to The Bulls Head at Barnes Bridge for a bit of music and Python-esque humor from “Bill Posters Will Be Band”. These fellows played in some pivotal jazz bands during the Sixties, such as the “Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band” and “The Temperance Seven”. If you fancy a giggle and want to see someone play a teapot in tune, or hear the spoons tapped perfectly to time I’d strongly suggest a visit!
As a lover of Agatha Christie I’d also recommend the Agatha Christie Walk. It was her 120th birthday this year, so expert and author of “Agatha Christie’s Secret Notebooks”, John Curran, held a fascinating tour of “Christie’s London”. I’m hoping they repeat the event next year.