Top 10 unusual facts about London

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London is one of the most popular cities in the world,with millions of people across the globe recognising its most iconic features such as Big Ben and Buckingham Palace. With such success, London is bursting to the seams with strange statistics and unusual laws.

Here are the Top 10 unusual facts about London:

Top 10 unusual facts about London that will blow your mind

10. Harrods, a luxurious shop based in London, used to sell cocaine over the counter up until 1916. The now class A drug was labelled as ” a welcome present for friends at the front”. This could be directed at soldiers from World War 1. However, one thing is for certain; if Harrods were to reintroduce the product, it would not be received nearly as well as it was almost 100 years ago.

9. It is estimated 8.778 million people call England’s capital their home. Although this may seem a big number, it shrinks in comparison to the juggernaut that is Tokyo, which holds 37 million people, making it the most densely populated urban area. This would mean the whole population of London could fit into Tokyo four times and still have room left.

8. From 2007 onward, over 300 languages have been used across London, making it one of the most multi ethnic cities in the world. Throughout the history of the world, there have been 6,909 languages recorded in the world, with only 6% of them having more than a million speakers. This means London has around 4% of those languages being spoken within the capital.

7. 45% of London is made of a white British population, and another 15% come from white heritage not originating in England. The rest is filled by a diverse population ranging from African American to Jamaican.

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6. It is illegal to fly a kite in any street in London. According to the town police clauses, 1847,” it is illegal to fly a kite in ” any street, to the annoyance, obstruction or danger, to the residents or passengers”. Although London holds many great experiences for residents and visitors alike, flying kites is most certainly not one of them.

5. Big Ben is arguably the most iconic part of London, making it very well known not only throughout the rest of England, but across Europe and even into other continents. Because of this, it has become a landmark many wish to see, but people mistake the clock tower and Big Ben himself. Ben is the bell that resides with the chassis of the clock tower, not the tower itself.

4. More than half of The underground network in fact is above ground. This contradicts the famous name. As it turns out, 55% of the so called “underground” is actually based above ground. This is very misleading and this scarce fact is unknown even by some of London’s born and bred.

3. It is illegal to die in the Houses of Parliament. This is a very bizarre law, to be sure, as their is obviously no way to prosecute a dead person. And even if there was, who knows what the punishment would be? Hanging?

2. The London underground is the oldest railway network in the world, at a hefty 154 years old. It has definitely aged well! The first journey of the tube train took place in 1863. However old the tube is, it continues to serve the people of London just as well as it did all that time ago.

1. At one point during World War 2, London was the capital of six countries. It may be hard to believe, but its true. Over 70 years ago, in the middle of the rampaging Second World War, London was one of the only “safe” cities that resisted the regime of Hitler. Because of this,it became the safe haven of governments that couldn’t stand up to the Nazi party, and therefore became the capitals of those countries. These countries included Poland, Belgium, Norway, Holland and France.

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by Billy Ray

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