Welcome to Covent Garden, London. I’m going to show you around and tell you what I know about this famous neighbourhood. Covent Garden is a popular place for tourists to visit in London, so I thought you’d like to see it. Native Londoners (like me) also go to Covent Garden just to walk around and to soak up the atmosphere.
Join me as we learn about how this area was in the old days. I will tell you a little bit about the history of London -- how Covent Garden once used to be a very poor area and was considered to be a slum. You can now see how different it is -- there are many theatres and expensive shops. I wonder what it would have been like to be a flower seller in Victorian London.
I had fun making this video for you -- hope you enjoy it!
Take the quiz here: http://www.engvid.com/welcome-to-london-covent-garden#quiz
Hi, everyone. I'm Jade. In today's video, we're going for a walk around Covent Garden in London. It's one of London's famous areas, and it's known for entertainment and performers. So as we walk around, I'm going to tell you some of the things that I know about this area. Are you ready? Let's go.
That's a cool shop!
So here we are in Covent Garden. This area's really famous for theaters and street performers. And even though there are modern shops all around us and cafes, whenever I come here, I really get a sense of the old London, the London of 100 years ago or 150 years ago. At that time, too, there would have been street performers. And they would have sold roses and sung songs, songs like this, "Who will buy my sweet red roses? Such a sight you never did see." That song is from a musical called "Oliver". And that was written by Charles Dickens. So yeah. When I come to Covent Garden, I get a sense of all the history of London. Let's take a look at some of the performers.
I don't know about you, but I think I've seen enough street performers now to last me a while. So I've taken you to a different part of Covent Garden because right behind me is a house where the great author Charles Dickens used to live. And do you know anything about Charles Dickens? Because he's one of our most famous writers. And he wrote at a time where London was pretty much poverty, disease, and misery for most Londoners. So we're really lucky to have the very different London that you see today. But I want to show you a part of Covent Garden so you can really imagine that time of Charles Dickens.
Here we are at Seven Dials. It's a part of Covent Garden where there's a roundabout and seven streets coming off the roundabout. This place, in Victorian London, was a very different place. It was London's poorest slum. So it was one of London's worst areas. At that time, in a single house, as many as seven families lived. There was no electricity. There was no running water. So you can imagine it was a very dirty place. Also, there would have been a lot of crime around here because the families were very poor. These days, we see something really different. We see expensive boutiques. We see nice cafes. But at that time, the shops were called "rag and bone shops", and that means they didn't sell new things; they sold really, really old clothing that was almost falling apart, very, very old boots. So there was nothing new because this was a really poor area then.
Because London is so old, we have secret alleyways like this. This is called "Neal's Yard", and it's actually one of my favorite places in Covent Garden because just down there, there are some cafes and really nice juice bars and things like that. But can you imagine how scary it would have been in Victorian times when all the people around here were a bit poor and a bit dodgy? But we're quite safe now. What I'm going to do now is get warm in one of those nice cafes there. And what you can do now is go and do the quiz for today's video on the EngVid website. If you enjoyed this tour around Covent Garden, thumbs up. And don't forget to subscribe. And I'd just like to say thanks for watching. See you later.