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Posts Tagged ‘Marylebone High Street’

Another article purring over the beautiful, old-fashined Daunt Books in the Londonist.

Daunt Books is how a bookshop should be – rows of gleaming books ready to be devoured, comfy chairs placed near coffee table books, helpful staff who read and can reccomend.

It is a sanctury for those who love reading. I often go in there when I am passing, not even to buy a book (although sometimes I cannot resist the temptation) but just to sit among books in a beautiful setting.

It is also the perfect place to get books for travel writing. Every section on the bottom floor is divided by country and has easy to find travel books, cook books, coffee table books, history books, biography, fiction…all about that one place.

On my recent trip to Spain I dipped into the Spanish section on the ground floor to find a book to accompany me on the journey. I found a lovely, small travel book about an English writer living in an obscure Andalucian village called The Factory of Light, by Michael Jacobs.

A gem.

Daunt Books, 83 Marylebone High Street, London W1U 4QW.

(Open Monday – Saturday 9am – 7.30pm and Sundays 11am – 6pm)

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According to the London Informer the history of Marylebone will be put together this summer in a montage of films under the title Reflections of Marylebone.

 Baker Street Entertainment will use old footage from the 1930s, 40s and 50s and supplement this by interviewing long-standing locals.

The film will be directed by Simon Moorhead for St Marylebone Society.

I know I’d like to see the changes on film. When my grandfather lived and practised here as a doctor, it was a professional but low-key area. According to him the High Street was rundown – a mile away from the fashionable, chic urbanity of today.

Read the full article by the London Informer here.

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Since the sunshine is so glorious its always wonderful to find some green space where I can have an ice cream, read the paper or simply escape to.

Paddington Street Gardens is a tiny slice of just that, situated only one street behind the Marylebone High Street. Its closer than Regent’s Park and smaller, and also has a children’s playground.

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The most interesting thing though, is the park’s history, as it was once a burial ground for St Marylebone Parish Church and has over 80,000 graves buried there.

Here is a link to a page about its past.  But a basic summing up is:

  • It started life as a burial ground around the 1760s
  • The graveyard was official closed, however, in 1814 when St John’s Wood burial site opened
  • The site became used for more lively activities in 1885 when it was opened as a recreational space

In some ways it is a little creepy to think of playing, or resting or even just reading on a old graveyard. In another way, though, it’s rather nice that life in London continues and grows.

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I went into Cancer Research UK (24 Marylebone HiSTrgh Street) last week and it struck me how marked up their prices are. I saw a lovely spotted red Zara dress that I also have at home – bought in the sales for £12 and (exactly the same dress, but second hand) was £20 in the charity shop.

There was also Max Mara coats for £30 (maybe a bargain if you like your designer stuff), exclusive designs from young designers priced up to £100 and old, worn shoes for £25. Part of me feels good for them, if people are willing to pay hiked up prices for second hand clothes and give to charity at the same time, why not?

Listen to my podcast to hear more…Charity shop – bargain or rip off?

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I had lunch here the other day and really liked the cafe but – sadly – the soup wasn’t up to scratch.

My minestrone was salty, tinny and too small. The vegetables looked like they were from a tin and there was only one or two pieces of pasta. Pontis Cafe Deli

On the upside though it is a really relaxing place to work and I always love the whole Italian diner feel.

I will go back again but maybe stick to a coffee next time.

14 Marylebone High Street (0207 486 7810)

(Also I took this photo of the stair well that leads to the kitchen downstairs – there is a real New York feel to it, especially on a grey day)

Stairwell

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