It’s a replica of Peter Ackroyd’s London Under that made me want to go and see one of the few underground streets in London.
âLower Robert Street is still off-limits; It reads, “and of course had a reputation for being haunted by a murdered prostitute.”
I rolled my eyes. Oh good? Are we still here, scared of a slightly spooky side street and believing in ghost stories?
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Wasn’t someone murdered EVERYWHERE in this town?
Well I went there and took my dog ââwith me – not to protect me because as you will see in the video it looks battery operated – and it was scary as hell.
To get there, walk down the Strand from Charing Cross and turn right into George Court Lane.
Cross John Adams Street and walk down York Buildings. On the left, downhill, is the opening of a ghostly tunnel.
It is closed between midnight and 7 a.m., and the street is so little known that it is only really frequented by bicycle couriers or taxi drivers looking to get out of Victoria Embankment quickly.
Looking down this 18th-century street, winding through tiny cobbled sidewalks, is a strange experience.
The edge of the door that slams it at night makes it look like a window into the past.
In fact, it is such a strange little tunnel that it has earned the nickname among those who know it, “the cave of bats”.
Lower Robert Street is a remaining underground street that was originally under a large and very large housing estate called Adelphi (Greek for “brothers”, so called because the architects were four brothers James, John, Robert and William Adam)
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But as was often the case in Victorian London, underground spaces became synonymous with the underworld: begging, crime and prostitution abounded.
And it’s âPoor Jenny,â a prostitute who lived and worked on Lower Robert Street, who would haunt this place.
I will point out that in Victorian times no distinction was made between homeless women and prostitutes, and since Jenny lived on a pile of rags in the bowels of the street, I will say that it is possible that it wasn’t a client who strangled her to death, but just a man who wanted to kill a woman.
There have been reports of hearing screams, gasps and a “rhythmic tapping”, the sound of her kicking the ground as she fought for her life.
I admit it was creepy, and I will also admit that my dog ââLudo was not a fan of the place.
He stuck very close to me while we were in the bowels of the street, and didn’t run past me until we reached the end of the tunnel at Savoy Place.
I don’t want to trust my dog’s opinion too much – he tries to befriend hissing swans and doesn’t even know there is an internet – but he didn’t like it.
I also found it creepy as hell.
And now I’m scrolling my videos back and forth, listening among the sounds of electric lights and distant motors, for any hint of a rhythmic tapping.
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