So how many of these eight London facts did you already know? A score of more than two and we’re seriously impressed.
1. Blackfriars, home to the FIPP office, is the only train station in London to have entrances on both sides of the Thames.
2. London buses were not always red. Before 1907 different routes had different coloured buses. The first distinctive Routemaster bus moved through the streets lit by gas lamps and with traffic lights mounted on striped poles. The Routemasters entered service in February 1956 and were withdrawn in December 2005. They are however returning to the streets of London especially for the FIPP World Congress, where they’ll transport delegates to and from the venue from the recommended hotels.
3. The Houses of Parliament are officially known as the Palace of Westminster. A FIPP Congress private dinner sponsored by Mondadori will take place in this exclusive venue, for selected delegates. If you are invited to attend please note: British law states it is illegal to die in the Palace of Westminster.
4. Despite perception, only 22 executions have ever taken place inside the Tower of London. Legend has it that if the ravens leave the Tower the kingdom will fall. At least 6 wing-clipped ravens are kept at the Tower at all times and they even include a “spare”. Congress delegates are invited on a Tower of London Tour on Monday 9 October… just please leave the ravens where they are.
5. Tobacco Dock, the FIPP World Congress venue, was the scene of one of London’s most incredible animal versus people showdowns. In 1857, Charles Jamrach, an exotic animal trader had a tiger break free on Betts Street next to Tobacco Dock. Nine year old John Wade tried to stroke the tiger, but was swiped, knocked out and carried off in the animal’s jaws. Jamrach came running and thrust his bare hands into the tiger’s mouth, forcing the animal to let the boy go. The boy survived and went on to sue Jamrach. If you see any stray tigers during the event, please don't stroke them, report to the FIPP information desk immediately.
6. London is full of pubs associated with artists, writers, and poets. The Fitzroy Tavern on Charlotte Street was famous for hosting Dylan Thomas, George Orwell, and satanist Aleister Crowley, who invented a cocktail once served there. The FIPP Congress has its very own pub sponsored by PressReader in the FIPP Marketplace. FIPP hope to see you there for a drink.
7. Some medieval knights were female. Petronilla, Countess of Leicester, fought alongside her husband during the 1173 rebellion against King Henry II. The FIPP World Congress opens with a medieval banquet sponsored by UPM. Come and cheer the gallant UPM jousting knights as we host an evening of troubadours, contortionists, magicians, jugglers, minstrels and medieval tumblers at this most royal of banquets with a four course feast and ale and wine brought to your table throughout the evening by dancing wenches.
8. And finally, it is important you know that under Section 54 of the Metropolitan Police Act, 1839, it is illegal to carry planks of wood along London pavements. If you would like any further information on any aspect of the FIPP World Congress, or would like to arrange legal transportation of your wooden planks, please contact Claire Jones or Natalie Butcher. We are happy to help with whatever you need.
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