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IN THE NEWS
TOUR OF THE MONTH
ON THIS DAY IN LONDON
23rd April 1959 1st heliport in Britain opens in London
23rd April 1925 1st London performance of operetta Fasquita staged
23rd April 1881 Gilbert and Sullivan's opera Patience produced in London
23rd April 1775 Artist J.M.W. Turner was born in Covent Garden, London.
23rd April 1705 Richard Steele's Tender Husband, premieres in London
23rd April 1702 The Coronation of Anne I in Westminster Abbey.
23rd April 1685 The Coronation of James II (and VII of Scotland) in Westminster Abbey.
23rd April 1661 English king Charles II crowned in London
23rd April 1661 The Coronation of Charles II in Westminster Abbey.
Ice-cream on the line
The first ice-cream stall in Britain opened here in 1851
Location: The Strand, WC2N 5HS
Description: Who'd have thought...but apparently Charing Cross Station holds an icy secret from times gone by.
Back in the good old days, 1851 to be exact, when a 'treat' was a treat and not something you could get on a whim, the first ice-cream stall was established at Charing Cross Station.
Ice cream remained an expensive and rare treat in the UK, until large quantities of ice began to be imported from Norway and the US in the mid Victorian era. A Swiss-Italian businessman, Carlo Gatti, opened the first ice cream stall outside Charing Cross Station in 1851, selling scoops of ice cream in shells for one penny. The penny lick soon became popular, remaining on sale until banned in 1926, by which time it had been replaced by the ice cream cone.
Demand for these chilly delights began to soar after cookery writer 'Agnes Marshall' mentioned cones in her book published in 1888.
What a station!