1000 Londoners

Yvonne in is and is a retired fashion designer.

Yvonne has lived her whole life in a large town house in suburban London. She welcomes us in through the courtyard and up the marble steps through the large heavy door. Yvonne moved into the house in 1969, when she was beginning her career in fashion, and has spent over forty years turning it into her unique home.

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Questions & Answers

  • What's your first memory of London? It was during September in 1960. London was very dull and dark. It was not a very bright day, the sun was not out. I was excited because it was very new and very different. I missed my mum and school friends but looked forward to seeing my brother who already lived here.
  • What do you miss when you're away from London? I always feel London is my home, if I do not visit the centre of London for a month, i miss the atmosphere of London. It's such an exciting city, with interesting little streets in the West End and Knightsbridge. I love the shops, hotels, the atmosphere and the architecture in Regents Street and Regents Park.
  • What's your favourite neighbourhood? Wimbledon, I have always loved Wimbledon. Doing school runs and I have had friends there over the years.
  • What's your favourite building? The Royal Albert Hall. I am very fond of that building both inside and out.
  • What's your ideal day out in London? Visiting the shops obviously in Oxford Street or Knightsbridge, and then having a lovely lunch and ending with the theatre or the movies.
  • What's your ideal night out in London? The theatre or a film in Leicester Square. I used to love going dancing. A dinner-dance at the Lanesborough, in Hyde Park with a live band.
  • What's your most hated building? I don't like the Barbican, its very confusing. It's made of cement and I don't like it at all.
  • What's the best view in London? I visited the Shard, it's brilliant for the view and the London Eye. In the old days I loved the BT tower, that used to be number one, before the London Eye. The view of London was spectacular, then they closed it down because of the IRA problems. It was a target so no one was allowed to go up there for any form of entertainment.
  • What's your favourite open space? Regents Park, it has everything; all the gardens. It's relaxing and beautiful.
  • What's the most interesting shop? For me, I still think Harrods, despite that fact the management has changed. They always go out of the way to find unusual things for each department. I love their furniture department. They were the first to introduce eating and shopping on each floor, which is very convenient.
  • What's your favourite place to hang out? The Dorchester for tea- its very relaxing, ver decorative and good music. Also, the Ritz, I have been going there for over 45 years. They are very professional and the tea they serve is excellent.
  • What's been your most memorable night out in London? I had my 40th birthday party at the Ritz. My close friend's came to the party and Royal baby Harry was born on that day, the same day as me.
  • How would you like to spend your ideal day off in London? I love going down the Thames on a boat from Westminster to Hampton Court, whilst having lunch.
  • Where would you take someone visiting from out of town? Several places. I would take them to the V&A, the shops, City Bank of England and St Paul's Cathedral.
  • What's the worst journey you've had to make in London? When traffic prevents me from getting me where I am going. Went you can't get from South to West.
  • What's your personal London landmark? Victoria station. The bus from the airport took me to the station and I got a taxi to my brother's home in Clapham. Westminster Abbey also stands out. It will always be there. It's a fascinating building; wonderful architecture.
  • Who's your favourite fictional Londoner? The Wombles. They were funny, musical and entertaining.
  • What's your favourite London film, book or documentary? Summer Holiday - Cliff Richard.
  • If you could travel to any time period in London, past or future, where would you go? I loved the 1980's. I was grown-up, I was sophisticated, I knew what I wanted, I had my children already and I loved the fashion. Never the 1800s, they would have eaten me alive!
  • For you, who is the ultimate Londoner? Michael Caine.
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