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Westfield Stratford City East
Westfield Stratford City East Retail Theme

TOUR OF THE MONTH

Carry On in London Tour
Carry On in London Tour

ON THIS DAY IN LONDON

6th December 1948 Born today: Jonathan King, London, singer (Everyone's Gone to the Moon)

6th December 1943 Born today: Mike Smith, London Engld, rocker/pianist (Dave Clark 5-Glad All Over)

6th December 1892 Born today: F Osbert S Sitwell, London, poet/writer (Out of the Flame)

6th December 1883 Harrods original shop burns down, forcing the build of a much larger shop.go to related location

6th December 1817 William Bligh, who suffered mutiny on HMS Bounty, passed away in Bond Street, London.go to related location

6th December 1769 Silk cutters Doyle and Valline were hanged for inciting rioting in Bethnal Green

Robert Cocking's Fall to Earth



Robert Cocking's Fall to Earth

The world's first ever parachutist is unfortunately buried here.

Location: St Margaret's Church, Lee Terrace, Lewisham

Description: 'Robert Cocking' was the developer of an early unsuccessful parachute design and the first person to be killed in a parachuting accident.

Robert Cocking was a professional watercolour artist with keen amateur interest in science. He had seen Andre-Jacques Garnerin make the first parachute jump in England in 1802 and been inspired to develop an improved design.

On 24 July 1837, at 7.35 pm, fate was to offer a fatal blow...Despite the fact that Cocking was 61 years old, was not a professional scientist, and had no parachuting experience, the owners of a balloon agreed and advertised the event as the main attraction of a Grand Day Fete at Vauxhall Gardens.

A large crowd had gathered to witness the event, but it was immediately obvious that Cocking was in trouble. He had neglected to include the weight of the parachute itself in his calculations and as a result the descent was far too quick.

Though rapid, the descent continued evenly for a few seconds, but then the entire apparatus turned inside out and plunged downwards with increasing speed.

The parachute broke up before it hit the ground and at about 200 to 300 feet (60 to 90 m) off the ground the basket detached from the remains of the canopy. Cocking was killed instantly in the crash, his body was found in a field in Lee.

And so to this location, the final resting place of Robert Cocking.


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Robert Cocking's Fall to Earth

The world's first ever parachutist is unfortunately buried here.


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