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Lambeth Tour Guides Association Newsletter Spring 2024

Walk This Way!

Good Reasons to Walk with a Lambeth Guide 


Picture Credit: LTGA

Lambeth Tour Guides’ Association welcomes you to the first issue of our quarterly Newsletter ‘Walk this Way’.

In this issue we will be looking at good reasons to walk with us, revealing how you can train to become a Lambeth Guide, and telling you about a famous person from Lambeth, a moment in Lambeth’s history, and a place in Lambeth you can visit for yourself.

If you head over to our website, you will find a whole host of fun and interesting walks coming up this April, May and June.

Here are some highlights:


The Benefits of Getting Out and About in Lambeth

Exercise Your Mind

On our walks you will discover lots of new people and places linked to Lambeth and the facts and stories that bring them to life. Lambeth Guides thoroughly research their walks before planning and delivering them. It’s a great way to learn something new and find out about the borough’s diverse and varied history.

Picture Credit: LTGA

Exercise Your Body

According to the NHS walking can help you build stamina, burn excess calories, and make your heart healthier. Most of our walks last at least 90 minutes, some are longer. When you walk with us you are getting a good workout into the bargain, which is highly beneficial to your health and wellbeing.

Exercise Your Spirit

Coming on a guided tour can work wonders for your spirit. Not only are you getting physical exercise and finding out new things, but you are also meeting new people, sharing interests, and possibly making new friendships. Our aim is that you leave our walks feeling uplifted and inspired.


It Happened in Lambeth 

Chartist Rally on Kennington Common

Picture Credit:

On the 10th of April 1848 a huge Chartist Rally was held on Kennington Common. The advent of the railways allowed working men from across the country to travel to London to be part of an event intended to be the start point of a march to deliver a petition to parliament demanding universal male suffrage and other democratic reforms. Amongst those addressing the crowds was William Cuffay, son of a former slave, and Britain’s first black trade union leader.

The optimism of the rally was short lived. Their route was to Parliament was blocked by soldiers under the command of the Duke of Wellington and up to 170,000 civilians sworn in as special constables and armed with truncheons.

The Chartist had to settle for a small delegation being allowed to deliver a petition which turned out to bear hundreds of fake signatures. While the Chartist Movement fizzled out after this failed attempt it did establish a legacy in terms of the development of UK trade unions and the 20th century formation of the Labour Party.

Picture Credit:

Another Protest in the Park

Over a decade earlier in 1834 the Government employed similar tactics, bringing in troops and swearing in 5,000 special constables when Robert Owen and his Grand National Consolidated Trade Union led a huge march from Copenhagen Fields near Kings Cross calling for a pardon for the Tolpuddle Martyrs. On this occasion the march was allowed to proceed, culminating on Kennington Common once their petition was handed in to Parliament.

This time the campaign succeeded and when the five Dorset farm workers were given their pardon and brought back from Australia the victory march in their honour fittingly set out from Kennington Common.


Person of Interest from Lambeth

Conrad Phillips

Picture Credit: The Guardian

Born in Lambeth on the 13th of April 1925 and attended St John Boyer School in Clapham. He served in the Royal Navy in the Second World War.

From the late 1950s he appeared regularly in episodes of popular TV shows such as The Scarlett Pimpernel, Robin Hood, The Invisible Man, and The Avengers. He is best known for his starring role in the ‘Adventures of William Tell’ which ran between 1958 and 1959. When the series was revived as ‘Crossbow’ in the late 80s he played the role of Stefan, Tell’s older mentor.

He also appeared on the big screen in over 30 movies, including ‘Circus of Horrors’ filmed on Clapham Common in 1960 and ‘Dateline Diamonds’, a teen pop movie featuring The Small Faces.


A Place to Visit in Lambeth

St John’s Churchyard, Waterloo

Nestled behind St John’s church in Waterloo Road is a quiet and peaceful public garden. The perfect spot to get away from the commuter hustle of Waterloo station and the tourist clamour of the Southbank. Although it is now managed jointly by Lambeth Council and the Parochial Church Council its origins date back to the 1870s when social reformer and founder of the National Trust, Octavia Hill, was involved in transforming the grounds into a garden which responded to the social needs of the area.

Picture Credit: Chris Everett

The garden is maintained by volunteers and contains colourful flowers beds and number of mosaics created Southbank Mosaics as part of a joint project with St Mungo’s Homeless Charity. The gate to the gardens remains open until sunset throughout the year. If you feel peckish during a visit to the gardens there are some excellent vendors selling tasty street food in the church forecourt. And, while you’re at it, why not take a free visit to the church vaults to see various artworks and items of interest displayed there.

Make sure to catch the poem ‘Eurydice’ by Sue Hubbard. The stanzas of this poem once adorned the walls of the underpass leading from Waterloo Station to the IMAX Cinema within the roundabout at the end of Waterloo Bridge. When they were removed the church saved the words of the poem for posterity and recreated them on the wall of the vaults.


Become a Lambeth Tour Guide

Picture Credit: Adrian Flower

You could enrol on this course to develop the skills required to plan, prepare, and deliver guided tours suitable for a 21st century audience, both as walking tours on the streets.

Focusing on the London Borough of Lambeth, this one-year course mixes tuition on guiding skills with learning about the diverse history, architecture, tourist attractions and facilities of this vibrant Borough.


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