Hello, I’m Linda, a London Blue Badge Guide and a Londoner born and bred.
I qualified as a London Blue Badge Guide in 2019, fulfilling a lifetime ambition, but have been guiding in the City of London and the City of Westminster for the last 5-years. And yes, London has two cities!
Before this, I worked in banking in a variety of roles, which included working directly with both business and personal customers, and more latterly in positions of leadership, so I know how important it is to understand what each client is looking for, and to design tours that are relevant, inspiring, and fun.
So, who are my clients? Well, they come in the form of all different shapes and sizes, from small family groups to larger corporate groups, or groups of students, but they all have one thing in common, in that they enjoy hearing the stories, scandal and gossip, that bring places to life, and make them memorable.
Of course, I can show you the main sights, the Tower of London, St Paul’s Cathedral, Westminster Abbey, Buckingham Palace, the Changing of the Guard, and the City of London, a global financial centre built on a medieval street plan! Or, some of the lesser-known, but equally fascinating places just off the beaten track, such as Mayfair, Covent Garden, the Southbank and London Docklands.
I specialise in walking tours, but equally can take you on a panoramic tour in a coach, or private hire vehicle, and around on trains, buses or boats, as all tours can be tailored to meet the individual needs and interests of the group.
So, if time is limited, maybe the main sights of London in a day, followed by a trip out to Hampton Court Palace, where King Henry V111 lived with all six of his wives, or Windsor Castle, the family home of kings and queens for almost 1,000-years.
What people have said about my tours: -
"The whole tour was stimulating and fun and we will certainly be returning".
"The guide had a wealth of knowledge on the history, and related the featured locations to present day news and events, which made the stories even more interesting".
"You could not fail to leave the tour wishing it had lasted longer. London scenes brought to life".
Walking tour in the City of London looking at different styles of architecture, pre and post the Great Fire of London in 1666, secular and non-secular. Includes examples from the Georgian era (18c), the Victorian period (19c), "Brutalist" architecture (post Second World War), and examples of modern and post modern architecture (20/21c).
|Business & Finance||
Walking tour in the City of London looking generally at trade and finance from Roman times (43AD-410AD), including the role of trade associations/livery companies, goldsmith bankers, and taking in some of the key financial institutions and their historic and modern-day roles, such as the Bank of England, the Royal Exchange and Lloyds of London.
|Castles & Palaces||
The Tower of London, the "jewel in the crown", being both a royal palace and a fortress. Home to the Crown Jewels, one of the most famous jewel collections in the world, the Yeoman Warders ("the Beefeaters"), and the Tower Ravens. Where three queens of England have been beheaded, two of them married to the same man, and two kings murdered.
Windsor Castle, home to kings and queens for nearly 1,000-years, and St George's Chapel, the burial place of King Henry V111 and his favourite wife Jane Seymour, and where Prince Harry married Meghan Markle in 2018.
Hampton Court Palace, set in acres of beautifully landscaped gardens, the palace where King Henry V111 lived with all six of his wives (but not all at the same time!).
|Churches & Cathedrals||
St Paul's Cathedral, built in the aftermath of the Great Fire of London in 1666, by the great architect Sir Christopher Wren. His masterpiece, but was Wren actually an architect, and was the dome intended?
Westminster Abbey, built in the ''new Gothic architecture", by King Henry 111. It took 500-years to build. The royal church, where 38 coronations, 17 royal burials and 16 royal marriages have taken place.
Westminster Cathedral, the mother church of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, built in the style of Neo-Byzantine, inspired by the early Christian basilicas, in deliberate contrast to the Gothic style of the Abbey,
Salisbury Cathedral, built on a water meadow, it has the tallest church spire in the UK, and the oldest working mechanical clock in the world, but its greatest treasure is an original copy of the Magna Carta 1215, one of only four surviving copies.
The National Gallery. Trace the story of Western European art from the late 13c to the early 20c, reviewing the work of such great artists as Leonardo Da Vinci, Rembrandt, Rubens, Vincent van Gogh, and the home-grown talents of Constable and Turner. Discover hidden meanings in their works which relate to their lives and times.
|History & Prehistory||
Stonehenge. Visit one of the world’s most famous prehistoric monuments, dating back around 5,000-years.
The Inns of Court. The heart of London’s legal profession. Enter the world of the robed English barrister on a tour that takes you on a journey over the centuries, with stories of the Knights Templar, infamous cases, dramatic characters, traditions and rituals, on a walk that goes through a warren of beautiful gardens and squares, and ends up at court!
Visit Stratford-upon-Avon, birthplace of the great playwright William Shakespeare. See where he lived, went to school and is buried, and hear how his life played out. London was where he made his money, but Stratford was his home.
|London Areas in Depth||
Walking tours exploring the streets of such places as Mayfair, Soho, Covent Garden, Marylebone and Bankside; the stories, the history, and the gossip. Or, the medieval streets of the City of London, the centre of trade and finance for nearly 2,000-years.
Royal Museums Greenwich. Visit the National Maritime Museum, the Royal Observatory, where east meets west (the Prime Meridian) and the Cutty Sark. See the Old Royal Naval College, built by Sir Christopher Wren and the famous ‘Painted Ceiling’. Hear about the area’s famous shipbuilding past.
Take a walk in Westminster around Parliament Square and the beautiful St James’s Park, and see not one, but three Royal Palaces, the place where kings and queens have been crowned since 1066, and watch the Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace and Horse Guards.
|Stately Homes & Country Houses||
Blenheim Palace. The birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill, built 300-years ago for John Churchill, the 1st Duke of Marlborough, a gift from a grateful nation for his victory against the French in 1704, surrounded by acres of landscaped gardens created by the famous landscape gardener Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown.
West End Theatreland. A walking tour wandering around theatrical London. You will almost be able to smell the perfume and the greasepaint as you explore the star-studded West End.
City of London