Although an American invention, Monopoly is a popular board game the world over. In the United Kingdom there are a number of Monopoly games available, but easily the most popular version is set in the capital: London. The majority of properties represented on the Monopoly board are still in existence today and can be visited by the general public. Visiting all the spaces on the Monopoly board is a relatively common experience that many Londoners turn into an evening out, taking part in what we call a ‘Monopoly Pub Crawl.’ But with or without the drink, a journey across London’s Monopoly Board is an interesting and unique way to visit London. From those who love to travel, to those who love the game, keep up with our trip around the Monopoly Board and experience London in an entirely new way!
Part 5 – Reds
Here you will find the single most landed on space in the game – Trafalgar Square – in a set that encompasses both Westminster and The City
Top Tourist Tip: Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese. One of the oldest and most notable pubs in London and an absolute must on any visit to the capital. [Monday – Saturday only]
Running from Trafalgar Square to Temple Bar at the border with the City of London, the Strand gets its’ name from an old English word ‘strand’ meaning ‘shore,’ as the road ran along the original shallow shore of the (then wider) River Thames. The Strand has been in use since Roman times and for centuries was the primary route from the City of London to Westminster and the countryside. Large mansions and fine houses and palaces lined the Strand from the 12th century onwards – many with large gardens and gates along the river (one of which can still be seen in Embankment Gardens). The fine properties were slowly demolished as the area gained a reputation for brothels, coffee shops, and dangerous taverns. Today the Strand is home to a number of theatres, churches, and hotels, including The Savoy, as well as the Royal Courts of Justice. Eagle-eyed visitors may also spy the old Aldwych (previously Strand) Underground Station which has been closed since 1994 but is now used for filming (Atonement, V For Vendetta, and 28 Days Later just to name a few).
Fleet Street (£220)
Located inside the City of London and following the route of London’s largest underground river, Fleet Street picks up where the Strand leaves off. Home to the nations’ press from 1500 to the 1980’s, ‘Fleet Street’ is a metonym that can be used to refer to the British Press even today. Large plaques line the street displaying notable headlines from various newsprints throughout history, even though today the street is a centre of finance and the legal system rather than journalism. Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese, one of the oldest and most famous pubs in London is located off Fleet Street where the public can enjoy a pint where notables such as Dickens, Conan Doyle, and Twain all drank.
Trafalgar Square (£240)
Built with an initial budget of £11,000 in the early 19th century and named after the Battle of Trafalgar – won by Admiral Nelson against the Napoleonic forces of the French – Trafalgar Square is a large public space in the middle of central London. The last stop on parade routes (such as the London Gay Pride Parade), a site for protest (Black Monday of 1886 and, more recently, student protests), a location for celebration (VE Day in 1945 and the yearly Christmas tree lighting), and home to the National Gallery, Trafalgar Square is a multi-functional landmark. Presided over by Nelson’s Column, a stone column over 170ft high depicting Lord Nelson himself at the top, the Square was once notable for its’ vast pigeon population which has been drastically reduced thanks to the introduction of harris hawks and the banning of feeding the birds! Large screens are occasionally set up in the Square to show live feed of Olympic games, Royal Opera or Royal Ballet performances. The Square is also home to the world’s smallest police station (located in the south eastern most point of the Square).