The Krays In London
The East End, Gangland & The Dark Side Of The Swinging 60s
The legend of the Krays looms large in London…
Twin brothers Ronald and Reginald Kray were born in Hoxton, East London in 1933 and began their career in crime with protection rackets in their native East End. They soon graduated to Long Firms – fraudulent businesses trading on credit and selling the goods on without payment. The public face of their business was represented by their nightclubs – a touch of West End glamour in the East End.
Their violent modus operandi would eventually lead to murder – indeed a central part of the Kray myth is that each brother goaded the other when it came to their “graduation” to what Ron in particular is said to have viewed as the ultimate criminal badge of honour.
Events came to a head when Ron became the first of the twins to kill – the shooting of rival gang member George Cornell in the Blind Beggar Pub, Whitechapel on 9th March 1966 is central to the Kray myth.
The Krays had their portrait taken by famous photographer David Bailey and published alongside those of Mick Jagger and Michael Caine. That famous picture is the very model of that phrase from the baptismal rite, the glamour of evil. It is part of the National Portrait Gallery’s collection… it’s the image that branded the legend… and it’s the picture that hit the front page in 1969 when they were finally brought to book.
Our tour will weave a path between the legend and the truth looking at every facet of the Kray’s life and criminal career – as murderers, as East End Robin Hoods, as gay and bisexual men in post-war working-class London, as army deserters and as icons.
We’ll visit Bethnal Green & Whitechapel for the famous Kray locations including…
The Blind Beggar Pub
The Carpenter’s Arms
We’ll look at the bit-part players of the tale, hold conspiracy theories up to the light and along the way we’ll look at the filming of Legend, the 2016 biopic starring Tom Hardy.
Welcome to the dark side of the Swinging Sixties.
This tour is NOT suitable for children.
Anything else? Yes, it’s packing a superstar guide.
IT ALL COMES DOWN TO THE GUIDING
Don’t just take it from us…
Graham Ross –
A superb tour with an excellent guide. Adam was engaging and fantastic speaker. He gave time for photos and questions but also kept the tour moving a a pleasant pace. Was great to see the places I had read about. Highly recommend
Adam was just fantastic, so engaging, funny and made the walk one of the best we have been on. I have ready many books on the Krays and seen all the films but learnt so many new things from Adam and to experience the atmosphere and see so many of the places where it all happened was just brilliant. This is a tour not to be missed. Before you meet Adam at the appointed place there is a beautiful memorial across the road to the devastating loss of 173 people who were crushed to death in the stairwell of Bethnal Green tube during an air raid in 1943 so take a few minutes to see that if you can.
Cliff Keen –
Really very good. Adam not only delivers a lot of information and background, he also presents it in an entertaining and friendly way. A Sunday morning well spent.
Mrs D –
What an excellent way to spend a Sunday morning! The information was imparted in a fascinating, interesting and ‘fun’ way – bearing in mind the subject matter of the walk! As for Adam, he engaged with every one of the group along the way – he’s a star! We’ve done about fifty or so London walks over the years and I would definitely put this one in the top three walks. Thanks Adam for such an enjoyable morning’s walk.
Diane & Sarah Irwin & Friend Lucia –
Did the Krays walk on Sunday 20th November with Adam. We thoroughly enjoyed the tour! It was in a part of London that we did not know all that well and filled with some fascinating details about the Krays that we had not heard before. Although quite a dark subject, Adam made us laugh inbetween the gruesome stuff and certainly brought the history to life. He pointed out lots of interesting buildings and we ended up outside the Blind Beggar pub, which was open so we could pop in for a drink! Thanks Adam, we would walk with you again!
Jeremy S –
Really enjoyed the tour with Adam! The Krays story was told in an engaging, entertaining, and balanced way. It was a great way to learn about what the Krays part of East London would have been like, and to see the traces of it that are still there.
HW & VB –
Adam, our tour guide, provided some fascinating insights into the murky world of the Krays and pointed out several of the places associated with them as we retraced their footsteps through the East End of London. If you want to know more about the lives and times of these two notorious gangsters and get a real feel for the London they inhabited, Adam’s tour is the one for you.