I had decided that one of the places I wanted to visit in London was the Imperial War Museum. This repository of all things military has a fearsome reputation of being an awesome place, amongst military historians caps are removed and it is spoke of in hushed tones. I decided that seeing as it was a mere 2 tube stops away I would tackle it on my first day in London. However, as I came to the exit of the Elephant and Castle Tube Station a sign informed me that it was closed till July!!!
I was seriously disappointed, but was still determined to see the place so boldly went walkies, Naturally having to turn around almost immediately because I was going in the wrong direction! Eventually I got my bearings and soon found the glorious building with those vintage naval guns dominating everything.
I always was under the impression that the guns originated from HMS Rodney, but the information sheet informs that they originate from other ships; the left from HMS Ramillies, while the gun on the right is from HMS Resolution. Both are 15 inch guns with a range of about 29 kilometres. Their shells are no toys either, weighing in at about 876 kg. I was very overwhelmed by these guns though, they were still not the largest guns ever mounted on a battleship.
Lip dragging in the floor, I left those guns and headed in what I thought was the way home, only to end up in the maze of side streets that are in the Borough of Southwark. Unfortunately that was where I made a slight mistake and I ended up meandering around, being very overwhelmed by all I was seeing around me.
The nice thing is that in the midst of this city there is both old and new side by side. Their age and condition varying from street to street. The traffic is fast moving, but disciplined; cars stop at pedestrian crossings, cyclists use hand signals and the robots actually work. It is also a very multicultural society and the area where I am staying has a real mix of European, Africa, Asian and everything in between. Sadly though I keep on bumping into South Africans!
That concluded my abortive trip to the Imperial War Museum. I am not amused!!! However, I will probably be around in July anyway, so may still get to see it. I look forward to that a lot.
I finally did get to the IWM in August 2014, and I was disappointed. It is not easy to explain, but I did do a blog post about my experience. The guns however are still magnificent!
© DRW 2013-2018. Images recreated 26/03/2016