Thursday, 9 November 2006

guy's chapel

Today on the way from Surestart at the Chipper Club to catch the RV1 for toasted panini at the South Bank and then playgroup at Coin Street, we bought a racing car, an I'm A Little Teapot book and two large counting jigsaws at the Guy's charity portakabin, we popped into Guy's Chapel, where a student was practising on the piano very pleasantly and there was a nice sculpture of Thomas Guy.

Interesting info on Thomas Guy from that King's webpage:
'Thomas Guy (1644-1724) was an eccentric and controversial philanthropist. He made a huge amount of money by printing Bibles illegally. He was particularly concerned for vulnerable people, though he was sometimes accused of being self-serving in the kind of help he gave.

'However, most of all, he is remembered for an act of extraordinary generosity. He 'got lucky' through his investments in the south seas, and cashed in his shares, before the 'South Sea Bubble' burst. At the time he was a governor of St Thomas' Hospital, which was then located on the London Bridge side of St Thomas' Street. He hated to see poor people who were not fully well, and people with mental health problems, being discharged before they were healed (see the magnificent sculpture in the chapel, which shows Guy rescuing a vulnerable person from the gutter). So with his huge wealth, he decided, in 1721, to found a new hospital from which no one would ever be turned away. He died soon after dedicating his money to this cause.

'You can still see the original hospital: The Collonade was built first, with the two little courtyards on either side of it. The front courtyard followed, with the statue of Thomas Guy in the centre. This part of the complex was completed in 1780. It is a little gem of Georgian architecture, and there are hopes to restore it to it's orginal glory.'

This walk on the Lost Industries site covers Guy's and a lot of other interesting stuff in the area that we regularly walk through, with some good links also.

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