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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.
Home of the Speaking Clock
The former post office building that helped crack the code.
Location: Flowers Close, Brook Road, Dollis Hill
Description: This was the home of the Post Office Research Station from the 1920's to the 1970's. This station was dedicated mainly to research in telecommunications and the teams at Dollis Hill played a leading role in a number of key advances in the field.
In 1914, the Postmaster General agreed that the Post Office needed improved facilities for research and that a permanent Engineering Research Station should be established. In 1919 the Treasury agreed to buy this site in Dollis Hill. Initially, staff worked in wooden ex-army huts until the permanent buildings had been completed. The main research building opened in 1923.
In 1936, the Speaking Clock - known to London users as TIM - was designed and constructed there by Dr E.A. Speight.
The Dollis Hill teams were also responsible for the development of the Trans-Atlantic telephone cable and for providing the links for outside television broadcasts, such as the first broadcast of the Remembrance Day service in 1937.
The site also played a role in the deciphering of the German Enigma code during World War II. Tommy Flowers put his Colossus computer together here, and later reassembled it at Bletchley Park.