Tuesday, 19 August 2008

London Fun Walk Idea - Trafalgar Square

London Walk - Fun In Trafalgar Square

A London walk in Trafalgar Square might not look, at first glance, as if it would take very long, but if you stop to look and learn about all the London landmarks there it can take the best part of a morning or afternoon, particularly if a tasty picnic lunch there is planned too. I designed this London fun facts in Trafalgar square list with the help of some research from Amazon books about London and websites such as Visit England, BBC and Transport for London.

Sometimes kids have more fun learning about history if they can do it in an informal, casual way. Here are some interesting historical titbits to have ready for telling, when they reach the attractions of Trafalgar Square. The landmarks, sights and monuments can be explored as a treasure hunt style quiz - or as a more freestyle walk.

1. Nelson's Column. Have them try to look at Nelson's bad eye! They (and you!) might be surprised at what they see, or don't see. Is there an eye patch there or isn't there? One story goes that Admiral Sir Horatio Nelson's eye condition was not an unsightly one and that he never needed an eye patch. Offer an incentive to those who can research the answer!

2.The Police Box. Can the kids find London's smallest police station? Then can they spot something on its roof which legend says was from Nelson's flagship 'Victory?' (Lamp)

3.The statue of Charles 1st marks the spot where the old Charing Cross once stood. Have the kids find the spot from where all distances from London are measured. (It's on a plaque in the ground underneath.)

4.Which monument has ships on top of it? And which one was erected in honour of Queen Victoria? This answer is Admiralty Arch.

5.Which statue was a competition-winner, is the tallest Corinthian column in the world and is made from Dartmoor granite? Which big cats date from 1867 and were designed by Landseer? (The lions.)

6.Where are the names of all the poor foot-soldiers who had some of their paltry pay taken away to pay for a statue in honour in of Sir Charles James Napier? (They are named underneath.) What does he carry in his hands? (Scroll and Sword.)

7.Can they find a Triton, a Mermaid and a Dolphin? Can they find out what these mysterious creations represented? Why were fountains placed there anyway? (To break up the space due to the fear of riots in olden times.) Why is the water in the fountains so blue? (The blue tiled lining reflects light.)

8.Can they find something made from bronze under the North wall? (They are the official imperial measurements of one foot, two feet and one yard.)

9.Which statue is a bit of a 'poser?' all togged out in his Roman gear? (George 1V, the Prince of Wales 1762-1830) He presents himself bareback, riding without stirrups in a rather overdramatic and pretentious pose! Do the children think he was ever an expert rider - even without stirrups?

10Which statue do they think was designed from a photograph? Do they think its is better than the others? (Sir Henry Havelock - The Indian mutiny of 1857.)

If another London walk appeals after this one, then there are plenty more London walking tours starting from right here in Trafalgar Square!

No comments: