finding europe in london - leg 2
From: Spanish Place
To: Poland street
DISTANCE: 0.9 miles
running total: 1.2 miles
Follow the grey route on the map on the below (it means less time running along busy Oxford street!)
Turn back on yourself down Spanish Place and retrace your steps round Manchester Square, turning left back down Hinde Street.
At the crossroads, go straight over, staying on Hinde Street. Keep running along the road as it becomes Bentinck Street and then in a minute or so turn onto Welbeck Street. Keep on Welbeck Street right until it ends and then turn left onto Henrietta Place and then right onto Vere Street shortly afterwards.
Turn left onto Oxford Street and run along it for around 5 minutes until you see Poland Street on the right. STOP!
What's it got to do with Poland?
The King of Poland pub used to stand on the corner of this road. It was built to celebrate the victory of King John III Sobieski of Poland over Turkey in 1683. When the road was built in 1705, it took its name from the pub.
What else happened here?
Before Poland Street was built the south end of this road was a plague pit in the 1660s and then was later turned into one of London's largest workhouses in the 18th century.
It's not all bad though, Poland Street has been home to a number of Britain's creative successes: Thomas Malton 1780s (painter and tutor to Turner), Elizabeth Billington 1780s/90s (described as the greatest singer England ever produced) and poets Percy Bysshe Shelley and William Blake in the early 19th century.
Poland and the EU
Poland joined the EU on 1st May 2004 and is the 6th largest member of the EU based on population size and surface area. The Polish population account for 7.5% of the EU population.
Their currency is Polish Zloty and Poland have the EU to thank for a number of projects to keep water supplies clean, including pollution reduction in the Baltic Sea Region and new sewage systems.