Get A Good Buy Before You Go
 Three recommendations...
 
1) It's not a "buy" because they're free. I'm talking about one or more of the pieces of London - of London history - that you pick up on one of Fiona's Beachcombing Walks: mediaeval roof tiles, Elizabethan clay pipes, etc. The catch of course is that your visit has to coincide with one of her Beachcombing outings. But she ususally does a couple a month (see the Beachcombing Walks page) - so a lot of you will be in with a chance.And if you are lucky enough to catch one, well, you'll come away with the kind of London "souvenir" that 999,999 out of a million visitors to London won't get, something that in its simplicity and extraordinariness and interest will run rings around whatever it was that your neighbour splurged out for in an afternoon in Harrods! I mean just to give you an example, when there's a dinner party at Chez London Walks, we use mediaeval roof tiles for candle holders. Use them for candle holders because they're SO London, they're hundreds of years old, they've got quite extraordinary "conversational value", etc. etc.
 
2) An old London print. They're beautiful. They're interesting. They're authentic old London. And they're inexpensive. Well, they're inexpensive if you know where to go. You go to one of the antique print shops in Mayfair you're in to arm-and-a-leg territory. Don't. Instead go along and see Richard (no, he's not one of our guide Richards) at the used book market directly underneath Waterloo Bridge (right next to the National Theatre and the National Film Theatre, on the South Bank). He's got hundreds of wonderful old prints - and they're extremely reasonable (it's part of what goes with the territory, of course, of an outdoor market - Richard's not paying Bond Street or Knightsbridge rents, rates, heating and electricity, etc. etc.) All of the prints that are dotted throughout www.walks.com have come from Richard. Anything else? Yes, he's a very nice guy. Very helpful. As are his two gorgeous assistants - the Russian twins. Well, they 're not guys, but they're very friendly, very helpful. (Oh, yes, almost forgot to mention - Richard's usually got some London Walks leaflets lying about - so if your copy's gone walkabout, well do ask him for "the distinctive white London Walks leaflet".)
 
3) Our book of course. London Walks London Stories. The thing about the book is that it's not a bog-standard walking tour guidebook. You know the sort of thing I mean: "come out of the tube, turn left, walk 25 yards, turn right at the Starbucks". Yuhk. Who wants to read that sort of thing -  it's like reading cement. Let alone that they're out-of-date before they're published.) No London Walks guide would put his or her name on that sort of production - and I would certainly never allow London Walks to be associated with that kind of thing. And that's all by way of saying, London Stories is a great London "read", a proper armchair read, IT IS NOT A SET OF DIRECTIONS. It doesn't transcribe the walks, it complements them. Have a browse and you'll see instantly where I'm coming from. Indeed, you can have a browse here on www.walks.com - pieces of the book - short excerpts - are up here. They've been voiced. And a good place to "have a browse" and indeed get the book - well, the shop at St. Martin-in-the-Fields, the wonderful old church in Trafalgar Square.
 
But you can also get the book from a few of the author-guides. I, David, always carry a few. Adam's always packing. Etc. etc. It's £9.99 in the shops but you can get it from us for £10, signature included (if you want it)!