Have a Cockney Christmas!Here at Cockney Rhyming Slang we'll be having a proper Cockney Christmas. A good-old knees up and a sing-song round the pianner. We hope.£You don't have to be£a Cockney or even live in London to have a right old ding-dong this Christmas though. Here are our top-ten tips for a magnificent Chrimbo, Cockney-style.
Visit Dennis Severs houseLocated in the Spitalfields area of east London, Dennis Severs house is an amazing magical journey back into the past, when the Cockney identity was first beginning to establish itself. This eerie and atmospheric house is not a museum or a gallery, it's an experience you can't quite describe. Visit the cellars below stairs on a freezing cold winter's day to get a feeling of what life was like for the working people of the East End in the 1800s. On the top floor you'll find a truly Dickensian scene of poverty and want, but you never get the sense of sadness.http://www.dennissevershouse.co.uk/
See Chas and Dave liveTwo of our best-known exporters of Cockney culture are reforming for a Christmas special at the IndigoO2. It'll be a proper Christmas ding-dong with all the favourites such as "Rabbit", "The Sideboard Song", "Give Me A London Girl", and "Margate" to take the winter blues away.http://www.chasndave.com/tour_dates
Have a pie and mash experienceEnjoy the steamed-up windows and proper London grub and Pie and Mash near Spitalfields market. As you're near Brick Lane you could round off your culinary day with a curry too!Try Square Pie.
Take the Jack the Ripper TourJack the Ripper terrified the working class slum-dwellers of Whitechapel in the 1890s. His gruesome and pitiless slaughter of six women still sends a shiver down the spine. Whilst the Whitechapel of the Ripper's day is alomst all gone now, you can still take a walking tour to see the sights and get a sense of what life must have been like. In the cold and the dark of winter, it's an experience nobody can forget.http://www.thejacktherippertour.com
Learn about the Pearly Kings and QueensThe living embodiment of Cockney culture, the pearlies are alive and well. On Dec 5th 2012 you can hear a lecture on the history and traditions of the Pearlies.http://www.thepearlies.com/#/events/4533183778
Visit an East End Christmas marketForget the West End - this year head out East to get away from the roaring traffic and visit a part of London with a little bit of heart and soul left in it. Columbia Road Flower Market in Bethnal Green is the place to head for every Wednesday evening in December until the 19th. It's all about vintage clothes, original artwork homewares, left-field trinkets and jewellery, and above all - food! I can smell the mulled wine from here!
Drink some proper London beer at the Greenwich Meantime BreweryThe Greenwich brewery is a relatively new brewer, but their beers (we can vouch for this) are steeped in tradition and very, very, quaffable. We especially love the deep, rich London Porter - an ale that was originally drunk by the street-chair carries (porters) of London, and over time morphed into stouts such as Guinness and Murphys.http://www.oldbrewerygreenwich.com/our-nights
Take the Dickens Tour at Christmas
Dickensian London is best seen at Christmas. His characters personify the London of the emergent Cockney era, and Cockney Rhyming Slang even appears in his books. Visit the Old Curiosity Shop, discover the place where Bob Cratchit in A Christmas Carol 'went down a slide 20 times in honour of it being Christmas Eve'. Discover the maze of alleyways where Dickens placed the counting house of A Christmas Carol's Ebeneezer Scrooge.Dickens London Walk