Things to do in London Borough of Tower Hamlets, Greater London
Facts and Figures:
The London Borough of Tower Hamlets has 196,000 residents within its 20km. It is said to be London's fastest growing borough with a 33% increase in population predicted by 2020. By area it is the 6th smallest of the London boroughs. Tower Hamlets is roughly 51% White and 49% Black and Mixed Ethnicity, particularly Bangladeshis.
The borough was once home to the world's largest ports, but with the decline in shipping, the old warehouses and docks are gradually being regenerated for housing, offices and leisure amenities.
Tower Hamlets is home to the London Metropolitan University, some of the colleges of the University of London including Barts and the Queen Mary's School of Medicine and Dentistry; One Canada Square, Canary Wharf and other famous landmarks.
Tower Hamlets got its name originally as being the area where yeoman at the Tower of London lived, in the surrounding hamlets.
The London Borough of Tower Hamlets covers much of London's Docklands area, including Canary Wharf. It also incorporates part of the original East End of London, including Brick Lane, nicknamed the UK's curry centre for its authentic Indian cuisine. The borough consequently has some of the UK's most expensive real estate, around Canary Wharf, and some of its grimmest council estates with alarming rates of gun crime.
Old taverns such as the Two Puddings Pub, the unofficial headquarters of the Kray Twins gang, have witnessed many turbulent events in their long history. The area was notoriously unsafe in Victorian times and was where Jack the Ripper's Whitechapel Murders were committed.
The London Borough of Tower Hamlets includes the area known as the Isle of Dogs, which has some of Britain's' tallest buildings.
The best known attraction in the borough is the 11th century Tower of London which has been a prison, fortress, royal residence and even a zoo since the days of William the Conqueror. The White Tower dominates the skyline and is now the well-protected home of the Crown Jewels, along with the famous ravens, all watched over by yeoman warders.
Just beyond the Tower of London is Tower Bridge. Visitors can actually climb this famous landmark and enjoy the views and the Tower Bridge Exhibition which captures more than a century of local history and fun facts about the bridge.
Museums in the Tower Hamlets borough include the V&A Museum of Childhood, the Ragged School Museum and the Docklands Museum.
Mile End Park and Green Bridge contain gardens, trees and water features to brighten this urban area. The Sunday Flower Market is a particularly colourful event on Columbia Road.
Despite its small size, the Borough of Tower Hamlets has 12 underground and 3 mainline stations along with 16 Docklands Light Railway stations and 28 bus routes. Despite all this, many people cycle to work in the borough. The District, Hammersmith & City, Central and Jubilee lines all run through the borough.
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