Wednesday, 28th June, 2023

Our first stop today was St Michael’s Church, Cornhill. One of my favourite church composers, Harold Darke, was the organist there for 50 years between 1916 and 1966 (with a brief break to deputise for Boris Ord at King’s College during WWII). His “Communion Service in F” is my favourite setting of the Communion Service. It is widely accepted that the Cornhill Lunchtime Organ Recital series, begun by Darke in 1916, is the longest-running lunchtime organ concert series in the world. There have been only 16 organists of St Michael's since 1684. Another famous one is William Boyce who was there from 1736-1768.

The Pelican

The Lectern

Some of the floor tiles

The Sanctuary

Jesus  is baptised by John the Baptist

The Sermon on the Mount

The Nativity

The Annunciation (detail of above)

The Three Kings speaking with Herod (detail of Nativity Window above)

The Three Kings
(detail of Nativity Window above)

Detail of Nativity Window above

The Pulpit

The Symbol of St John (detail of above)

The Symbol of St Mark (detail of above)

The Symbol of St Matthew (detail of above)

The Symbol of St Luke (detail of above)

All the pews had carved poppyheads and each was different.

The Memorial of Harold Darke (The music is the beginning of his carol "In the Bleak Midwinter")

We met a guy in a lift at Bank Station who told us to visit The Royal Exchange and Leadenhall Market. Both buildings were worthy of a visit. The Royal Exchange building was the inspiration for the bank in “Mary Poppins” and the Leadenhall building was used as a location in the "Harry Potter" films.

Leadenhall Market

The Royal Exchange: One of the proclamations concerning the new king was made from the steps of this building

Interior of the Royal Exchange

Mansion House is the official residence of the Lord Mayor of London.

Who needs the mirrors at Luna Park when you can have the same fun in a London Tube carriage?!

Our next visit was to “Sherlock: The Game is Now”. This is basically an "escape room" in which one must solve a series of puzzles in order to move from one room to the next. Benedict Cumberbatch, Martin Freeman and other actors from the BBC series "Sherlock" appeared in video clips to provide the story and some hints. Satoshi and I were part of a team of five. The other members of our team were a mother and two boys from Israel. Despite working well together, we failed to complete our mission within the hour time frame required. Nonetheless, it was a fun and different experience. We were not permitted to take photos during the actual game.

This was where we had to go for the beginning of “Sherlock: The Game is Now”. It was a little confusing at first, but the name gave it away fairly soon!

The waiting area is a bar set up to look like it is in the Victorian era.

There was also a library...

...with some photos.

Dinner was at an Italian Restaurant

We then made our way to His Majesty's Theatre, via an Italian restaurant, for a performance of "The Phantom of the Opera". This is easily my favourite musical and I have seen it about 10 times over the last 36 years. The production we saw was the original which, in my opinion, has the best costumes and scenery. We could hear almost every word, the singing and acting were excellent and the special effects superb. The only negative was that the seating in the theatre is very cramped and it was quite hot inside. Overall, it was wonderful!

The stage before the show began

"The" Chandelier (which falls during the show)

Detail of the proscenium

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