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We headed off this afternoon in search of an RHS/Vintage market at Flat Iron Square with a fair idea of where we were going. Took the tube to London Bridge then struck out in the right general direction. Outside the Hop Exchange on Southwark Street we lost confidence and stopped to ask some incongruously smiley fire arms police officers by the entrance for directions. They didn’t know, but checked their sat nav for us and off we went. Flat Iron Yard is in Union Street so we cut through Redcross Way and came across The Boot and Flogger, a pub in which I remember meeting my dad when he worked locally and I was in London to get my train back up to college in Edinburgh in the late 1970s. I didn’t remember it being there or looking as it did at all.

Almost opposite we noticed a stretch of railings completely covered in mementos, messages  and pictures, some clearly very old and others more recent, all bearing testimony to a very moving and fascinating history of  the discovery of an  unconsecrated graveyard of 15,000 forgotten prostitutes (the Bishop of Winchester’s ‘geese’) other outcasts and paupers. See www.crossbones.org.uk for more information. Turning right on to Union Street we found Flat Iron Square which was a great venue for its regular vintage market, today also hosting the RHS with plants for sale and gardening themed workshops.

Back through the Sunday quiet of the locked up stalls in Borough market and along the very busy embankment to the wobbly bridge. On our way to catching the bus home at St Paul’s and looking up a side street we spotted a large and intriguing building across the far side of a T junction. Unable to resist going to see what it was we discovered St Paul’s YHA hostel. It is a magnificent building which was previously the school for St Paul’s choir boys for 100 years.

 

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The magnificent entrance to the Hop Exchange on Southwark Street.

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The Boot and Flogger pub, not at all where, or as I remembered it.

 

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The Virgin Mary with a goose

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We didn’t see any horses

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Note the arty reflection on these colourful Italian leather bags

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St Paul’s YHA, home to the school for St Paul’s choir boys for 100 years and what a base to explore London!

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