London is a city full of historic boroughs and vibrant districts, but there are none quite like Soho. This colourful and culturally diverse area of London has become a hotspot for visitors who want to experience the liveliness of London and its entertainment scene. Soho’s nightlife is known worldwide and has been a destination for many famous faces looking to enjoy a night of fun and relaxation. At the heart of the West End, Soho is right at the centre of London’s theatre scene, regularly hosting thousands of avid fans and spectators. If you’ve never visited Soho then it’s definitely worth adding to your itinerary if you’re planning a trip to London. There’s more to this vibrant district that meets the eye and we’ve put together a list of interesting facts and secrets about Soho for your enjoyment.
7 Noses of Soho
Unless you have a very keen eye then you probably won’t have noticed the series of noses that can be found around Soho. To be clear, the noses are made from plaster of Paris and haven’t been pulled from anyone’s face. They were the creation of artist Rick Buckley who placed them strategically underneath CCTV cameras around the area to protest the rise in government surveillance. The noses were first installed in 1997 and have become the subject of myths and stories amongst locals. Take a trip around the streets of Soho and you’ll find six of the seven noses on walls around the town. The seventh can be found only after locating the first six, but be sure to bring a map and a pen with you on your search.
First Italian Coffee Shop
These days it seems almost impossible to picture a time when every street in London wasn’t covered in coffee shops, but believe it or not the coffee craze is a relatively new trend. After the Second World War there was an influx of Europeans into Britain which brought with it some of the best shops and eateries in London. Bar Italia was the first official Italian Coffee shop in London and since opening its doors in 1949 has given Londoners their caffeine fix each morning.
Even people who aren’t fans of classical music have heard of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and be familiar with his success. The child prodigy rose to fame in the 17th century after composing some of the finest pieces of music in history. Not many people will know this, but he spent a year living in a house on Frith Street during a European tour in 1764. It’s believed that this is the house where Mozart wrote his famous Symphony No.4 in D Major. Be sure to tell us about your trip to this historic location when you get back to the Hotel Park Grand Paddington.
Invention of the TV
You may be familiar with the famous Scottish inventor who designed the first ever working TV set, but did you know that it was first displayed on Frith Street in Soho? John Logie Baird changed the world in 1926 when he demonstrated the invention that would change how the world communicates forever. The television he displayed back then wasn’t as good as the ones you’ll find in your London Hyde Park hotel suite today but it created a huge turning point for the entertainment industry and will always be part of Soho’s rich history.