London – capital of Albion
London is a city founded by the Romans in the first century AD. It is the largest city of the European Union and the third largest city in Europe after Istanbul and Moscow. The population of London is more than 8.5 million people. London is famous as an economic center of international importance.
One of the centers of globalization
The spirit of true England has left London. Now about 40% of its inhabitants are immigrants and their descendants. About 60% of Londoners are native Britons, and up to a million more come to the capital every day. Up to 12% of the city’s residents are other whites: Irish, Poles, Americans, Germans, French.
Thirteen to fifteen percent of Londoners are of Asian descent. About half of them are Indian, 2% each are Bangladeshi and Pakistani. Communities of Chinese, Japanese, Thai, and Iranians are influential. About 10% of Londoners are Negroes, both African and Caribbean, and their descendants. The rest are mestizos and Arabs.
Almost the entire population of the eastern part of the city is indigenous. There are also few newcomers in Richmond and Kingston. White newcomers are numerous in central London, in Kensington and Chelsea (one borough) they make up 35% of the population – Americans, French, Australians, Spaniards, Armenians, Italians, Germans and others. Other whites in poor neighborhoods are mostly Poles, Bulgarians, Georgians, Romanians, and Albanians.
There is a large Russian community in Hounslow, which has built an Orthodox church. There are many Irish in the West End – Westminster, Kensington and Chelsea, Hammersmith and Fulham (one borough). Up to 7% of Lambeth residents are Portuguese and Brazilians. There are many Scandinavians in Southwark. Newham is home to communities from Eastern Europe.
Indians are concentrated in Brent, Harrow, Redbridge, and Ealing. Pakistanis are concentrated in Wandsworth and Redbridge. On May 9 a British subject of Pakistani origin, Sadiq Khan, became the new mayor of London. However, he is unlikely to push hard for the interests of his community – he will not be allowed to do so by a city council where anti-Islamic and Eurosceptic sentiments are growing with the return of the Independence Party.
Bangladeshis are a major ethnic group in Tower Hamlets, to a lesser extent in the Camden neighborhood. Arab neighborhoods are located in Westminster, they are 50-60 years old.
Negroes live in the city center, especially in Lambeth, Southwark, Newham, and Barking.
As for religion, Christianity is particularly strong on the outskirts of the capital. Muslims reside in Tower Hamlets, Brent, and Newham. Jews are a major religious group in Barnet, especially in Stanmore and Golders Green, and there are congregations in Westminster. Hindus reside in Brent and Harrow. Sikhs have settled in the western and eastern parts of the city.
The center of the economy
Many European and global companies meet in London. The two economic centers in the capital are the old City, not rebuilt after the fire of 1666 thanks to the positions of the upper class.
The new economic center, Canary Wharf, was built on the site of the East End slums where Charles Dickens wrote his famous novels about poor London. The slum was demolished in the early 1980s, when construction began. Canary Wharf employs about 150,000 people, about a quarter of whom live in nearby areas, some buying up housing here.
London is characterized by pendulum migration. More than a million residents of the suburbs come to work in the city, half of them use the world’s oldest subway, which in 2013 celebrated its 150th anniversary. It’s a 19-minute subway ride to the northeast suburbs and a 10-minute ride to Baker Street (Westminster) station.
Although Westminster has no large complexes, it has twice as much office space as Canary Wharf. Many companies have their headquarters here, their headquarters apartments.
The City is the home of brokers, insurance, and services. Islington and Camden are centers of culture, design, fashion and architectural projects. Canary is media, banking and legal services. Lambeth and Southwark are centers of local government and are home to the London Assembly. There are many accounting services here.
The cultural center of the island and the continent.
It’s hard to list at once all the attractions of London, from Roman buildings (the wall remains in the City) to skyscrapers in the same place and Canary Wharf.
The main landmark of the British capital is the Palace of Westminster with Big Ben, where the British Parliament sits. Opposite it, across the Thames, stands the London Eye, the Ferris wheel, and very close to it is Lambeth Palace, the residence of the Archbishops of Canterbury, the leader of the Church of England.
In Westminster is Westminster Abbey, where the most famous Britons are buried. The residence of the kings is Buckingham Palace. When the British flag flies over it, it means the Queen is home. Sherlock Holmes Museum, Pall Mall and Pimlico Streets are other attractions in the capital of the United Kingdom.
Hyde Park is the largest of London’s parks. Many parks are located in the northern and eastern parts of the cities. In Newham, the Olympic venues built for the 2012 Games stand out. England’s home stadium, Wembley, is located in Brent. In the early 2000s it underwent extensive reconstruction, and so its capacity grew to more than 90,000 people.
The East End was once an abode of poverty. When the aristocrats of the West End were still asleep sipping tea, the working man of the place had already been at work for hours. Charles Dickens praised it in his works. It’s now home to the Childhood Museum, Canary Wharf, and the Bangladeshi Quarter. The Docklands Light Rail is a local mode of transportation along with the Underground itself.
There are many soccer clubs in London. The most famous are Chelsea (Stamford Bridge is their stadium), Tottenham (White Hart Lane), Arsenal (Emirates), West Ham United (Boleyn Ground), Croydon. The eastern part of the city is famous for its parks and pubs. Apart from Havering and Redbridge, there is no subway at all.
London is a booming city. Its population is growing and due to the arrival of the native Britons, another million of them work here, and a large number of visitors. Nowadays blacks and Indo-Pakistan community are replaced by white population – people from Spain, Brazil, Portugal, Greece and Eastern Europe.
London, capital of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (Photo: Samot, Shutterstock)
London (eng. London) is the capital of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The city is located on the zero meridian, also called Greenwich meridian.
London was founded by the Romans in 43 AD. It is possible that a settlement on the site of the modern city existed before the Roman invasion of the British Isles, but this theory has not yet been confirmed.
By the 2nd century, Londinium (as the city was formerly called) had reached its heyday and became the capital of Britain. In the middle of the 6th century London became part of the East Saxon kingdom. In 604, King Saebert converted to Christianity, and the city had its first bishop. At the same time began construction of St. Paul’s Cathedral. In 1066, William the Conqueror became King of England, under whom the Tower was built.
During the Middle Ages London was divided into two parts – the political center of Westminster and the commercial center of the City. This state of affairs persists to this day. London quickly became one of Europe’s largest trading centers, and also gained the unofficial title of the financial capital of the world. In 1707 the city acquired a new status – London became the capital of Britain, as a result of the union of England and Scotland.
London is one of Europe’s most architecturally interesting cities. Tourists are traditionally attracted by the Tower, Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Square with the monument to Admiral Nelson, Piccadilly Street with the sculpture of god Anteros, Baker Street with the Sherlock Holmes museum, Abbey Road, known for the recording studio of the same name and many other interesting places.
Equally curious are the temples of London . Unfortunately there are almost no medieval churches left in the city (most of them were destroyed by the Great Fire of 1666). The symbols of the British capital remain St. Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey.
If museums tempt you, pay a visit to South Kensington . There you will find the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum and the Victoria and Albert Museum. The British Museum, with its collection of over 7 million pieces, and the National Gallery (London National Gallery) are definitely worth a visit.
London’s calendar of events is as packed with festivals and celebrations as it is packed with sights. January sees the opening of the New Year Parade, with up to 10,000 performers from around the world; it’s also the month of the Mim International Festival of Contemporary Theatre. March sees the Living Whisky of London Festival (you can sample hundreds of whiskies) and the St Patrick’s Day Parade.
April is a time for sporting events. It’s a time for marathons, golf shows and the Horse Shoeing Parade. May is a feast for art lovers, with festivals of classical compositions, art and theater. June continues with the London Festival of Arts and the Classical Music Festival. On the same days one of the largest art and antiques fairs – Summer Olympia Fine Art & Antiques Fair – opens.
In July, the Royal Horticultural Society holds a flower show, and in August there is a big festival of Caribbean culture, accompanied by costume parades.
September is the time of the London Chamber Music Festival, which lasts for four whole weeks. October is the Chelsea Craft Fair and Harvest Festival. November sees the opening of the London Film Festival, the Lord Mayor’s Show, and the celebration of Guy Fawkes Night, an annual folk festival. The year ends with the Christmas Tree in Trafalgar Square.
Several dates provide an opportunity to see unique royal fireworks . They are usually produced on February 6, the day the queen enters the throne; April 21, the queen’s birthday; June 2, the coronation day; and June 10, the birthday of the Duke of Edinburgh.
In addition, several daily ceremonies can be observed in London. One of the most famous is the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace. It takes place every day at 11:30 from April to August, and in other months at the same time, but every other day. And at 21.50 every day you can watch the ceremony of keys – the ritual of closing the Tower, which dates back 700 years.
Modern London is a cosmopolitan city, and cuisines from all over the world are widely represented here. More than 14,000 establishments work in the British capital, and you won’t find such a variety of dishes as you can’t find in every city.
Cereals, vegetables, meat and fish are the base of the traditional English cuisine, but spices are used in minimal quantities. The most popular meat dishes are a variety of steaks, beefsteaks, and roast beef. Pork pies, leg of lamb, and kidney pâté are often served. The favorite drink of British people is tea, which is drunk with biscuits, muffins, saffron rolls and, of course, pudding. Housewives from generation to generation have passed down the knowledge of how to make biscuits. And, by Englishmen they mean cookies, dry cookies, which have a long shelf life, and familiar to us biscuits, because of its porous structure, are called sponge cake, that is sponge cake.
Fans of low alcohol beverages will be pleased with the traditional brands of beer – black ale and porter. You can also enjoy whiskey, rum, gin and port.
For shopping, head to Oxford Street or Bond Street . And clothes stores can be found in Mayfair, Soho, and Chelsea . As a souvenir from London you can take English tea in exquisite packaging or original holders for tea bags.
No less popular are miniature double-decker buses, figurines of policemen or statuettes in the form of Big Ben, as well as a variety of souvenirs depicting members of the royal family. A more expensive gift for the loved ones – china from Royal Doulton, the official supplier of the Royal Court.
From 27 July to 12 August 2012, London was the scene of the XXX Olympic Games (London 2012 Olympic Games).