More distracted by dinosaurs at Waterloo Station last week I popped upstairs on Friday to have a look at the new Battle of Waterloo commemorative plaque unveiled by the Duke of Wellington last week. It is based on the original Battle of Waterloo medal awarded to the combatants.
It's up on the relatively new gallery that was put up over the concourse two years ago. Waterloo is the busiest railway station in Britain, by passenger movements; over 94 million a year. Originally known as Waterloo Bridge Station when it opened in 1848 it became officially known as just Waterloo Station in 1886. Waterloo has always been the railway station I have arrived at in London. Originally when I lived in Staines I would arrive at the platforms that for the Windsor and Reading lines. Six extra platforms were built in 1885 to service the Windsor trains and this station within a station was known as "Khartoum" because of the conflict in the Sudan. Later when I lived in Wimbledon and now today I always travelled into Waterloo. I will be going there a lot more often from Monday week, when I start my new job!
Waterloo used to be the terminus for the Eurostar when it first opened and having the monument might have been an issue for French people arriving if they still arrived there from Paris (Not for Belgians, presumably). Well, probably not, but I'm sure the slightly deluded French Ambassatrix would have kicked up about it.
The next exciting happening at Waterloo is the reopening of the Marks & Spencers food store next week. This closed last July for expansion and renovation and was supposed to reopen in the spring but has been delayed. It was enormously useful for picking up last minute, milk, wine, houmous, pizza, etc on the way home and has been sorely missed by the Legatus. For some reason they are opening a clothes shop on its first floor. I can't think many people will want to buy clothes on a railway station unless it is people going off to or returning from illicit nights away who need new underwear, shirts, blouses etc. Anyway, one other good thing about the M&S shop was it had fantastic air conditioning so when the glassed roofed concourse got really hot in the summer it was an excellent place to cool down.
I hoped to get some painting done today but I had run out of white which limited what I could do. Need to find somewhere I can get Humbrol paint this week!