A London love affair

In July 2012 I left Australia for the biggest adventure of my life. I was going to be overseas for 7 months studying at Sheffield Hallam University in the UK and fitting in as much Europe travel as humanly possible. Despite my extensive travel over that time it was London that remained my favourite city.

London left me spell-bounded as despite spending a month of my time there during the seven months overseas, I barely scratched the surface. I fell in love with the liveliness of the city, the hustle and bustle of the tube stations, the endless line of people covering the cobblestone sinking ciders outside local pubs. The old school charm of landmarks that have been there forever, the crowd of tourists still standing in amazement when overshadowed by sights like Big Ben and Westminister Abbey.  The young urban hideaways covered in street art, lane ways of coffee shops busting with addicts, the streets of worn-down terraced houses homing the creative souls of the city. The bright lights of the West End offering a couple hours of escape, stages full of dedicated dreamers, audiences forgetting where they are and who they are until the lights come up on reality.

I’ve fallen head over heels for this city and can’t wait to have a more permanent stay to continue the love affair.

Until then I get my fix through English films that showcase London’s best bits like ‘Bridget Jones’, ‘Love Actually’ and ‘About Time’; of course these films say that the city is not only one to fall in love with, but one to fall in love in. And who am I to say no to a Mr Darcy?

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This gallery features images from Portobello Road Markets, Buckingham Palace, St James’ Park and shows of the West End; the photographs are taken over July, August and November. I’ve written a little description before each selection of photographs. I hope you get an insight into the London that captured my heart.

A real highlight of my London experiences was exploring the Portobello Road markets held on the weekend. I went twice for nearly a whole day each time and still didn’t cover half of the stalls. The market is an incredible mix of vintage pieces, handcrafted jewellery, antique books, edgy Banksy artworks and phenomenal baked goods – seriously melt in your mouth stuff. The following photos were taken on my first visit (it was actually my very first weekend abroad). The weather was glorious and perfect for roaming the street stalls.

Charlie on Portobello Road

Pastel terraced houses

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The following images were taken during the gorgeous English Summer of 2012. The weather was so lovely that St James’ Park was full of people sun bathing and I even got sunburnt…in London of all places!! These photos are taken outside Buckingham Palace, in St James’ Park, outside Westminster Abbey and Big Ben in the week of the 2012 London Olympics Opening Ceremony, it was a brilliant time to be in London. Everyone was so happy and helpful – even the people at Heathrow’s Customs (trust me this is a rarity!)

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Big Ben

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These are photographs taken of shows I went to see on the West End. During my visits I saw Jersey Boys, Les Miserables, Matilda, Lion King and Billy Elliot. I’ve been a fan of musicals since as long as I can remember. I lived in Chelmsford in the UK (just outside Essex) when I was four and I have brilliant memories of my mother taking me to see either the ballet or a musical in London as a treat. The feeling of being that little girl, wide-eyed in amazement of this whole other world on stage has never really faded.

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A night at the theatre

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Now these photos are a much more accurate depiction of London weather. They were taken in November on a typical day – it was dreary and wet. But my sister had come over from Australia for only a short visit so we were to make the most of it! The photos are taken at Leicester tube station, Buckingham Palace, Hyde Park and the cappuccino was from Harrod’s when we were seeking refuge from the cold. It was of course all set up for Christmas so looked quite spectacular.

Leicester Square

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