The atmosphere is that of an old novel, yet the heart of a modern metropolis pulses all around us. Right near the highly-central Leicester Square, Goodwin’s Court is a secret place where time seems to have stood still. Buildings in the Georgian style, old-fashioned store fronts, bow windows from the 1700s and gaslights offer an unexpected view of London. And to think that in the ‘30s, this street connecting St Martin’s Lane and Bedfordbury escaped demolition by a hair - the old buildings mentioned by Charles Dickens in Bleak House seemed an offence to the progressively modern urban landscape. Where, in the 1800s, children once ran barefoot as their parents munched green peas on their doorsteps, at the start of the new millenium, Chris Columbus found inspiration for the set of Harry Potter - it seems that Goodwin’s Court was the model for Knockturn Alley, the twin street of Diagon Alley which, in the novels of Joanne Rowling, hosts shops dedicated to witchcraft. Today, Goodwin’s is, above all, a street hosting offices and other activities connected with the world of the theatre. But when night falls, especially when it’s foggy out, don’t be surprised if you hear the padded gait of Sherlock Holmes.
A Journey in a Painting - William Hodges in Tahiti
It was 1772 when the British artist departed with Captain Cook to explore the Pacific. His paintings showed Europeans far-off lands for the first time, rife with exotic dreamscapes and an unquenchable thirst for knowledge.
The dining halls of the V&A are over 150 years old. Designed by stars of interior design of the 1800s, it transformed the experience of visiting the museum and was well ahead of its time in respect to the rest of the world.