Brian Micklethwait's Blog

In which I continue to seek part time employment as the ruler of the world.

Home

www.google.co.uk


Recent Comments


Monthly Archives


Most recent entries


Search


Advanced Search


Other Blogs I write for

Brian Micklethwait's Education Blog

CNE Competition
CNE Intellectual Property
Samizdata
Transport Blog


Blogroll

2 Blowhards
6000 Miles from Civilisation
A Decent Muesli
Adloyada
Adventures in Capitalism
Alan Little
Albion's Seedling
Alex Ross: The Rest Is Noise
Alex Singleton
AngloAustria
Another Food Blog
Antoine Clarke
Antoine Clarke's Election Watch
Armed and Dangerous
Art Of The State Blog
Biased BBC
Bishop Hill
BLDG BLOG
Bloggers Blog
Blognor Regis
Blowing Smoke
Boatang & Demetriou
Boing Boing
Boris Johnson
Brazen Careerist
Bryan Appleyard
Burning Our Money
Cafe Hayek
Cato@Liberty
Charlie's Diary
Chase me ladies, I'm in the cavalry
Chicago Boyz
China Law Blog
Cicero's Songs
City Comforts
Civilian Gun Self-Defense Blog
Clay Shirky
Climate Resistance
Climate Skeptic
Coffee & Complexity
Coffee House
Communities Dominate Brands
Confused of Calcutta
Conservative Party Reptile
Contra Niche
Contrary Brin
Counting Cats in Zanzibar
Скрипучая беседка
CrozierVision
Dave Barry
Davids Medienkritik
David Thompson
Deleted by tomorrow
deputydog
diamond geezer
Dilbert.Blog
Dizzy Thinks
Dodgeblogium
Don't Hold Your Breath
Douglas Carswell Blog
dropsafe
Dr Robert Lefever
Dr. Weevil
ecomyths
engadget
Englands Freedome, Souldiers Rights
English Cut
English Russia
EU Referendum
Ezra Levant
Everything I Say is Right
Fat Man on a Keyboard
Ferraris for all
Flickr blog
Freeborn John
Freedom and Whisky
From The Barrel of a Gun
ft.com/maverecon
Fugitive Ink
Future Perfect
FuturePundit
Gaping Void
Garnerblog
Gates of Vienna
Gizmodo
Global Warming Politics
Greg Mankiw's Blog
Guido Fawkes' blog
HE&OS
Here Comes Everybody
Hit & Run
House of Dumb
Iain Dale's Diary
Ideas
Idiot Toys
IMAO
Indexed
India Uncut
Instapundit
Intermezzo
Jackie Danicki
James Delingpole
James Fallows
Jeffrey Archer's Official Blog
Jessica Duchen's classical music blog
Jihad Watch
Joanne Jacobs
Johan Norberg
John Redwood
Jonathan's Photoblog
Kristine Lowe
Laissez Faire Books
Languagehat
Last of the Few
Lessig Blog
Libertarian Alliance: Blog
Liberty Alone
Liberty Dad - a World Without Dictators
Lib on the United Kingdom
Little Man, What Now?
listen missy
Loic Le Meur Blog
L'Ombre de l'Olivier
London Daily Photo
Londonist
Mad Housewife
Mangan's Miscellany
Marginal Revolution
Mark Wadsworth
Media Influencer
Melanie Phillips
Metamagician and the Hellfire Club
Michael Jennings
Michael J. Totten's Middle East Journal
Mick Hartley
More Than Mind Games
mr eugenides
Mutualist Blog: Free Market Anti-Capitalism
My Boyfriend Is A Twat
My Other Stuff
Natalie Solent
Nation of Shopkeepers
Neatorama
neo-neocon
Never Trust a Hippy
NO2ID NewsBlog
Non Diet Weight Loss
Normblog
Nurses for Reform blog
Obnoxio The Clown
Oddity Central
Oliver Kamm
On an Overgrown Path
One Man & His Blog
Owlthoughts of a peripatetic pedant
Oxford Libertarian Society /blog
Patri's Peripatetic Peregrinations
phosita
Picking Losers
Pigeon Blog
Police Inspector Blog
PooterGeek
Power Line
Private Sector Development blog
Public Interest.co.uk
Publius Pundit
Quotulatiousness
Rachel Lucas
RealClimate
Remember I'm the Bloody Architect
Rob's Blog
Sandow
Scrappleface
Setting The World To Rights
Shane Greer
Shanghaiist
SimonHewittJones.com The Violin Blog
Sinclair's Musings
Slipped Disc
Sky Watching My World
Social Affairs Unit
Squander Two Blog
Stephen Fry
Stuff White People Like
Stumbling and Mumbling
Style Bubble
Sunset Gun
Survival Arts
Susan Hill
Teblog
Techdirt
Technology Liberation Front
The Adam Smith Institute Blog
The Agitator
The AntRant
The Becker-Posner Blog
The Belgravia Dispatch
The Belmont Club
The Big Blog Company
The Big Picture
the blog of dave cole
The Corridor of Uncertainty (a Cricket blog)
The Croydonian
The Daily Ablution
The Devil's Advocate
The Devil's Kitchen
The Dissident Frogman
The Distributed Republic
The Early Days of a Better Nation
The Examined Life
The Filter^
The Fly Bottle
The Freeway to Serfdom
The Future of Music
The Futurist
The Happiness Project
The Jarndyce Blog
The London Fog
The Long Tail
The Lumber Room
The Online Photographer
The Only Winning Move
The Policeman's Blog
The Road to Surfdom
The Sharpener
The Speculist
The Surfer
The Wedding Photography Blog
The Welfare State We're In
things magazine
TigerHawk
Tim Blair
Tim Harford
Tim Worstall
tomgpalmer.com
tompeters!
Transterrestrial Musings
UK Commentators - Laban Tall's Blog
UK Libertarian Party
Unqualified Offerings
Violins and Starships
Virginia Postrel
Vodkapundit
WebUrbanist
we make money not art
What Do I Know?
What's Up With That?
Where the grass is greener
White Sun of the Desert
Why Evolution Is True
Your Freedom and Ours


Websites


Mainstream Media

BBC
Guardian
Economist
Independent
MSNBC
Telegraph
The Sun
This is London
Times


Syndicate

RSS 1.0
RSS 2.0
Atom
Feedburner
Podcasts


Categories

Advertising
Africa
Anglosphere
Architecture
Art
Asia
Atheism
Australasia
Billion Monkeys
Bits from books
Bloggers and blogging
Books
Brian Micklethwait podcasts
Brians
Bridges
Business
Career counselling
Cartoons
Cats and kittens
China
Civil liberties
Classical music
Comedy
Comments
Computer graphics
Cranes
Crime
Current events
Democracy
Design
Digital photographers
Drones
Economics
Education
Emmanuel Todd
Environment
Europe
Expression Engine
Family
Food and drink
France
Friends
Getting old
Globalisation
Healthcare
History
How the mind works
India
Intellectual property
Japan
Kevin Dowd
Language
Latin America
Law
Libertarianism
Links
Literature
London
Media and journalism
Middle East and Islam
Movies
Music
My blog ruins
My photographs
Open Source
Opera
Other creatures
Painting
Photography
Podcasting
Poetry
Politics
Pop music
Propaganda
Quote unquote
Radio
Religion
Roof clutter
Russia
Scaffolding
Science
Science fiction
Sculpture
Signs and notices
Social Media
Society
Software
South America
Space
Sport
Technology
Television
The internet
The Micklethwait Clock
Theatre
This and that
This blog
Transport
Travel
USA
Video
War


Wednesday February 12 2014

I returned to the Radio Bar at the top of the Hotel ME on Saturday 7th of this month, when the weather was brighter and breezier.  I was in a hurry to be back for an appointment at home, and did not have time to really look at what I was photographing, and anyway, my eyesight is poor and I can’t see a lot of it if I want to.

So, for instance, when I took this picture, …:

image

… I thought I was photographing just the one big, obvious bridge, the one with the towers.  But it turned out that I was photographing seven bridges.  Newcastle eat your heart out.  Sorry about that big white circumcised cock in the foreground, getting in the way.  It looks like it’s doing radar, but I doubt that.

Moving on quickly from that, let me itemise the bridges, from nearest to furthest away.

Here is a google map which shows how this picture was possible.  Where it says ”ME” (photo manipulation is not my strong suit but I did manage to add that), at the far left, is where I was standing, so ME means both me and the hotel of that name.  Click on this map to get it bigger:

image

So, first, nearest to me, on the right of the big white cock, we can see pedestrians crossing the river on Blackfriars Bridge, the road version.

We cannot then see the isolated, do-nothing columns of the Blackfriars Railway Bridge that isn’t, so that doesn’t count.  But just beyond those columns, we do clearly see, second, the Blackfriars Railway Station Bridge that is, with its long line of slanting roofs.

Third, we can see the upper parts of the Millenium Bridge (featured in the bottom three pictures here, where there is also another snap of those weird Blackfriars columns), the footbridge that famously wobbled when first opened, which does about half the job of taking pedestrians between Tate Modern to St Paul’s Cathedral.

Fourth, slightly green despite being in the shade, is Southwark Bridge.

Fifth, there is the severely functional railway bridge that takes the trains from the south east over the river to Cannon Street Station.  You can just make out a clutch of signals at its left hand end as we look at it.

Sixth, we have “London Bridge”, and I can help adding sneer quotes.  What a come-down that bridge is from how London Bridge used to be.  No wonder so many people think that Tower Bridge is London Bridge.  The actual London Bridge is so boring.

One of the reasons I especially like the new Blackfriars Railway Station Bridge is that it sets a precedent for putting buildings on a London bridge, and makes it more likely that London Bridge itself might one day be rebuilt in something like its former glory.  Maybe not quite as tall as it once was, but with buildings on it, like Ponte Vecchio.  What would be particularly cool is if, just as in former times, a new London Bridge could be built, strong enough to be a platform for buildings, but if it was then left to individual plot owners to decide exactly what to put on each plot.

And finally, seventh, there is Tower Bridge, at the far right hand end of the map.

London.  It just keeps on getting better.

"What would be particularly cool is if, just as in former times, a new London Bridge could be built, strong enough to be a platform for buildings, but if it was then left to individual plot owners to decide exactly what to put on each plot. “

I had a similar thought about shopping malls. I was in Canary Wharf at the time. That place is far too ordered to be the proper home of capitalists, better they had built half a shopping mall and left the rest to tennants.

Posted by Simon Gibbs on 13 February 2014

After those seven, there is a huge distance to the only one more bridge before the mouth of the river - the Queen Elizabeth bridge at Dartford (which carries M25 traffic but is not technically part of the M25).

The historical reason for this is that shipping came as far as the Pool of London next to the Tower, but this is in the past now. Not much has happened subsequently, however. New bridges get talked about from time to time, but don’t ever seem to happen.

There are quite a few tunnels between Tower Bridge and Woolwich (Three tube crossings, two DLR crossings, one London Overground crossing, two road crossings, two pedestrian tunnels, and a Crossrail crossing that is now or shortly will be under construction. I have used the word “crossing” rather than “tunnel” because some of these consist of multiple side by side tunnels rather than just one). There is then nothing whatsoever until that road crossing at Dartford. The Channel Tunnel Rail link goes under the Thames slightly downstream from that, but only carries long distance traffic. It really is quite remarkable how separate the two sides of the Thames are downstream from Woolwich, and how connected they are upstream from that point.

Posted by Michael Jennings on 13 February 2014

Simon: I used to work at Canary Wharf. All the retail premises were leased by a single corporate landlord, and that landlord clearly liked large corporate tenants. This meant that if you wanted to go out and get a sandwich or a coffee, you had seven outlets of Pret a Manger and nine Starbucks coffee shops to choose from. There’s nothing wrong with Pret a Manger or Starbucks and they should have outlets in such a place, but not to the exclusion of all else. (There’s a Carcluccios in the bottom of the Citigroup building. This has two functions. It sells lots and lots and lots of take away coffee to bankers who want something other than Starbucks or the disgusting stuff from the coffee machines in the office kitchens. Also, headhunters sit at the tables meeting and having coffee with office workers who have nipped out of the office briefly to meet with headhunters. Given that this place is theoretically a restaurant, it sells an extraordinarily small amount of food. Oh Lord, does it sell a lot of coffee though...).

Posted by Michael Jennings on 13 February 2014

Actually, for a more interesting shopping mall experience, I would try going to Centrale in Croydon. A lovely new shopping mall designed to be filled with “prestige tenants” (and anchored by a lovely House of Fraser department store) was opened in 2004. This was overambitious for the local market in the first place, and many units were empty even before the economy tanked in 2007-8. After that, the landlords had to give up on prestige tenants and just take anyone they could get. Hence there is proper capitalism in it now. (The House of Fraser no longer has the gourmet food and fine wine section, though, which is sad).

Posted by Michael Jennings on 13 February 2014
Commenting is not available in this weblog entry.