Teddington. London. Zone 6
Home of the Phantom Framer.
Teddington is my home town, and it is the perfect location for Chapter.Con.
A small London 'Village' in Zone 6 of The London Transport system, it is served by regular red bus services to the main towns of Kingston (281) and Richmond Upon Thames (33).
Teddington also has its own London to Waterloo station, with trains going several times an hour.
Teddington in a Frame.
Teddington has most recently become notorious for having been blighted by a terrible wave of vandalism. Some unknown, who now goes by the name of 'The Phantom Framer', has been desecrating street signs and other public signage with bespoke, hand-crafted gilt picture frames. Having made National news, some claim he is the suburban equivalent to the street artist Bansky, making a post-modern, ironic statement; other's think it's just someone 'avin a larf.
Café and Restaurant Culture
Teddington is a fabulous community made up of a whole range of small independent shops; from indie coffee shops, to vintage clothes shops, cigar shops, florists, bakers, cookery shops, antique stores and boutique clothes shops, restaurants serving world cuisine, and traditional pubs serving great gastro food. It also resourced by several of the main stores and coffee shops, including a Waterstones Bookstore, WHSmith, Starbucks, Costa, Nero and Marks & Spencers Food Hall and restauraunt chains such as Carluccios, Cote, Brasserie Blanc and Bar Estillo.
History and Literary Heritage
Teddington is steeped in literary history. Strawberry Hill House (now attached to St. Mary's University) was originally the home of Horace Walpole, the godfather of the English Gothic movement, reflected in the folly of the stunning gothic architecture of the house. It is open to the public and tours can be arranged.
Just down the road, about a 10 minute bus journey, is Hampton Court Palace, home of Henry VI and his ill fated wives.
Teddington is also home to Bushy Park, originally the hunting gounds attached to Hampton Court Palace, and which can be accessed by a short walk through Teddington centre.
Fabulous Transportation Links
Teddington has its own mainline over-ground station to London Waterloo, offering quick access to all of the major London attractions. Using a short bus ride on the number 33 bus, you can get to Richmond upon Thames and the London Tube and fast express train (taking approximately 15 minutes)
Teddington's nearest airport is Heathrow, making it ideal for those travelling in from Canada and the USA. There is a direct bus service between Teddington and Heathrow (X25) and it takes about 30-40 minutes but is only about £2.50 a person. A black cab from Heathrow will cost around £40-£50, so if you buddy up, it works out reasonable.
Links to Europe
The Eurostar, channel tunnel goes from London Kingscross to Paris, Lille and Bruge a couple of times an hour and depending on when you book, and whether you hit their regular promotions, you can get across to Paris for around £60 each way; making it viable to do Paris in a day (although that would be sacrilege)
The Conference Location
The Conference will be taking place at St. Mary's University, Strawberry Hill. Famous as the home of Horace Walpole, father of the English Gothic Horror literary movement, the location offers a rich blend of Hogwarts like function rooms, and contemporary learning facilities.
Hotels and Accommodation
Most people who are wanting the full residential experience will want to stay in the hotel attached to the conference centre, and we are discussing discounts for attendees.
However, London prices are notoriously high and so there are other options nearby.
The Travel Lodge, Teddington
Walking distance to the convention or a quick bus ride (281) it offers clean, comfortable and basic hotel rooms with the options of breakfast. Prices are variable but start at around £90.00 a night. Again, if there is the need, we will talk about group bookings.
The Pope's Grotto
Now a trendy gastro pub, The Pope's Grotto offers beautiful, boutique hotel style rooms, some rooms with river views. Nearer to Twickenham, it is walkable (about 5-10mins) or a short bus hop.
The Park Hotel
A mid-range, smart, comfortable hotel within walking distance (10mins) or short bus hop to the University. Family rooms available and they advertise themselves as very family friendly. There is a pub and bar attached, which serves locals and guests and serves good food.