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Walking the London Blitz (Battleground Europe) Paperback – 13 Feb 2003
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About the Author
Joining the Army aged 16, Clive Harris served in the Royal Signals. He then became a policeman with the Hert
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Top Customer Reviews
On my next trip to London, I definitely plan to take this book with me and find some of this interesting places.
The book consists of four walks through London. The strengths of the book are the photos (especially when the author manages to match up shots from the Blitz with the modern view) and the eyewitness accounts. The maps are clear and the text is readbale.
The weakness is the choice of walks. The first, from the Bank to London Bridge makes good sense as it passes through parts of the City that were heavily bombed. Walk Two from Ludgate Circus to trafalgar Suare is still ok. But walks three and four, while covering areas of London that ahd some bomb damage, lean far too heavily on standard tourist attractions such as Buckingham Palace, or places of significance to American visitors. (Walk 3 is from Marble Arch to the Cabinet War Rooms and Walk 4 from Hyde Park Corner to Westminster). Things improve again with Walk 5 (London Bridge to St Pauls) but my enthusiasm was running low by this stage.
I would certainly think about taking one of the walks, but before I did I might do some of my own background research to flesh out the text.
When I took my book and set out to go on one of the walks, I realized how pathetic the book really was. I chose the walk that mostly showed the allied head quarters and statues etc between the Cabinet War Rooms and Marble Arch tube station. But I thought that it was best to start out at the museum first which in the book is suggested to be the last point of visit on that walk. Well, going backwards on the walk was not to recommend. One has to rely on the map which is not to scale in any way shape or form. I got lost so many times, had a difficult time identifying things or finding things and had to back track I do not know how many times. (And I have lived in London!)It would have helped if he at least had marked out the street names on the drawn map he did provide since some streets are skipped entirely. You can not use this book and not carry a London A-Z at the same time. And to not give an indication on how long the walk will take is also a big mistake. I had the most horrible water blisters in history on my feet.
I did try to just go and see a couple of other things mentioned in the book, on a later occasion but let's face it. The traces of the Blitz in down town London are GONE. You can not feel the spirit and everything has been repaired, torn down or remodeled so it is a waste of time to try to find the past.Read more ›
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