If it’s your first time in London or you’re not too familiar with the city, its sheer size, business and vibrancy might be a tad overwhelming. Modern technology such as smartphones and apps are designed to make our lives easier and more straight-forward. In order to help your trip to the British capital run as smoothly as possible, why don’t you make use of the following five top London apps?
Hailo Black Cab app
Instead of waiting patiently by the side of a road for a free cab to drive past download the Hailo Black Cab app. This useful application enables you to order a black cab to your current destination and even informs you of how long you will have to wait. Available for both Android and iPhone, you’ve little excuse to be taxi-less in London again.
Inclusive London app
Whether you need to book a table for two for tonight, find a pub that’s playing live music at the weekend, locate a child-friendly hotel or find a museum in your vicinity, the Inclusive London app enables iPhone users to locate virtually anything and everything in London.
There’s no denying it; the advancement of technology and online media is changing the way that we exercise, but going back to basics may be just what we need?
Just a decade ago, if you went for a run that is exactly what you did. Nowadays, going for a run entails strapping on your newest fitness gadget (wristbands seem to be on trend right now), putting on your carefully selected music playlist, followed by some actual running and then back home to upload your workout efforts onto a social platform – sounds great!
We believe keeping records of your workouts is an excellent way to see how you are progressing and knowing that you have friends and family tracking you online and supporting your goals are a fantastic motivator.
Although does concentrating your mind on your heart rate, running pace and favourite tune stop you from being able to truly enjoy exercising, from feeling the rush of endorphins, hearing that satisfying beat of your feet on the ground?
At Blue Harbour Health Club & Spa, we have the equipment and know-how to help you use both technology and the ‘basics’ to track your progress without being invasive.
Our scales not only measure weight but body fat percentage, the cardio machines are capable of taking your heart rate, or we have a heart rate monitor for free style training and free weight exercises. Plus we can recommend some great ‘tech-free’ fitness programmes you can try that will capture how well you perform certain exercises.
But for those of you who really have your heart set on being the fittest person on your newsfeed, there is a wealth of fitness apps we can recommend too!
To find out more or to look in to your fitness options drop by and see us at Blue Harbour Health Club and Spa.
Until next week… happy training!
Playful, colourful, conspicuous and not too serious, pop art is an artistic genre designed for the spirited. Introduced by experimental artists like Andy Warhol, Peter Blake and Judy Chicago in the 50s and 60s, this vibrant type of art became a popular embellishment of student bed sits when it was fashionable for music bands to decorate their album sleeves in the zany art styles.
Many of these images are etched indelibly into the minds of today’s 50, 60 and 70 year olds who are likely to have had furniture in the pop art style.
During these eras clothing was also heavily influenced by the pop art movement. With the cult of the celebrity, commodity fetishism and the explosion of the media permeating culture during the 50s and 60s, it was up to the pop artists to comment on this unprecedented popular scene through their playful art.
Pop Art Design exhibition
In celebration of this alternative and playful artistic style the Barbican Centre is hosting a Pop Art Design exhibition, aimed at exploring the exciting exchange of ideas between artists and designers in the ‘pop’ age.
More than 200 pieces from seventy different artists will be on display, ranging from the pop art magnates such as Andy Warhol to less well-known but influential figures to have emerged during an artistic era that explored the relationship between art, celebrity culture and advertisement. This thoroughly unique event will present a wealth of graphic material, including album covers, magazines, posters and photography. Pop Art Design will also show film and documentation of pop interiors and architecture.
Whenever new roads are built or railways are extended it is common practice for the construction companies involved to collaborate with archaeologists. Archaeologists are called in to assess the ground for any relics or sign of historical interest before the land is finally covered up.
The London Crossrail project is one such construction development which has demanded a developer/archaeology alliance. It is a good job the archaeologists were called in as this huge rail connection project is starting to make some extremely interesting historical finds.
In the early autumn this year, an archaeological discovery in London saw almost 200 Roman skulls found when tunnelling along the Crossrail route. The skulls are believed to date from the third or fourth centuries. Roman pottery was also found amongst the skulls not far from the Liverpool Street site. As the Romans used to cremate their dead before the third century AD the archaeologists are almost certain of which period of Roman occupation the skulls come from.
The remains were found in the deposits of the ancient Walbrook River which was paved over in the 15th century. The river’s muddy walls provided the ideal preservation environment for ancient bones and artefacts. Over the last year some 10,000 Roman pieces have been found at the site.
As you walk through London, in particular Chelsea, you may come across elderly men wearing scarlet uniforms topped with black tricorn hats. Who are these old men flamboyantly and quirkily patrolling the streets of London and what is their history?
Known as the Chelsea Pensioners, this London tradition dates back more than three centuries. Today the Queen honours these individuals, as have many of her predecessors.
It all started in 1682 when King Charles II decided that something must be done for British soldiers who had been wounded in war. Seven years later, King Charles’ ideas were re-enforced when William III introduced a pension system for soldiers who had been wounded or had served the country for 20 years.
The Royal Hospital in Chelsea was still being built during the late 1680s but on completion there was a commodity available known as ‘in-pensioners and out- pensioners’. Those who were in-pensioners lived inside the Royal Hospital and did not receive any money and the out-pensioners did receive money. In 1703 there were only 53 out-pensioners but by 1815 this figure had risen sharply to 36,757. The reason for the sharp rise was mostly due to a relentless and unforgiving individual from France called Napoleon Bonaparte!
Unbelievably this system ran until 1955 when reform took place and army pensions were no longer distributed from the hospital. The in-pensioners henceforth became commonly known as the Chelsea Pensioners.