One of Britain’s greatest engineers and a small bear from Peru are Paddington’s best-loved characters. Both Isambard Kingdom Brunel and Paddington Bear are celebrated with statues on Paddington station. Brunel, in his stovepipe hat, stands under the majestic ironwork spanning the platforms at the London terminus he designed for one of his greatest achievements, the Great Western Railway. Paddington Bear, as every child who has read Michael Bond’s books knows, came from “deepest, darkest Peru” and was found on the station bearing the tag: “Please look after this bear. Thank you.” The central London district of Paddington is conveniently located in Zone 1 between Edgware Road to the east, Bayswater Road to the south and Paddington Green to the north. Once known as Tyburnia after the famous gallows which stood at modern-day Marble Arch, it was laid out by the architect Samuel Pepys Cockerill, a relative of the great diarist. Tyburnia was intended to rival Belgravia and even though the novelist William Makepeace Thackeray — who lived in Albion Street — described it as “the elegant, the prosperous, the polite Tyburnia, the most respectable district of the habitable globe”, he may have had an interest in promoting his neighbourhood, as Cockerill’s plans were never fully implemented.
* MORE ON THE BOROUGH OF WESTMINSTER:
For more local restaurants, pubs, bars, theatres, cinemas or attractions; or to book a table or tickets for a night out, visit LondonLive.co.uk/Westminster.
Search properties, jobs or dates in any London boroughs.