This was probably Vaughan Williams favourite symphony. Richard Hickox researched this original version carefully and has made a definitive mark upon the world of classical music with it. But what is important for me is the way this symphony expresses a London. It is not the London of the 'Swinging 60s' or Elgar's 'Pomp and Circumstance' or 'Cockaigne.' It can be compared with Delius 'Paris- Song of a Great City.' This is a London of moods, November afternoon in Bloomsbury Square, night on the Embankment, the Thames flowing through and out to sea. There are some of London's sounds;- the lavender cry,the jingling of the hansom-cab, the drone of Cockney merrymaking with mouth organ and accordion, and the Westminster Chimes. The personality of that city was mysterious and vital. In this recording of the original version the symphony certainly is programmatic. This item of English culture (with its links to the last chapter of H.G.Wells' Tono Bungay) helps me to understand what London was like then. It is a bit of my inheritance that I want.