Kew Gardens 2017 – cherry blossom in abundance!

It’s still only the end of March, yet spring has come so early the cherry blossom is already in flower. I’ve been down to Kew Gardens to check it out and it’s good news all round – plenty of trees in full flower and plenty still in bud with blossom still to come. It’s turning into a vintage year! Continue reading

The 1910 Japan-British Exhibition – what’s left?

Season ticket to the Japan-British Exhibition 1910

© Museum of London

You thought the London Olympics were big, right? Eight and a half million tickets sold. Spectacular. But in 1910 another event did just as well, and it wasn’t a sporting event but a cultural initiative. It was the Japan-British Exhibition at White City, visited by 8,350,000 people, with 460,000 people passing through its gates in a single day (Japanese Gala Day). Okay, I admit it did go on longer than the Olympic Games – nearly six months, from 14 May 1910 to 29 October 1910.  But what was it for and what did it leave behind?  Continue reading