Talk:London/Archive 3

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Recent reverts

I rv'd London twice from User:JimmyGuano. See Talk:City_of_Manchester#Accuracy and the London Issue for more. Justinc 00:49, 17 October 2005 (UTC)

I appreciate your reasons for reverting something that spun off another discussion, but the conurbation thing in particular is a pretty serious point (IMO a clear innaccuracy) quite independent of anything to do with Manchester, so I've addressed it below.JimmyGuano 01:08, 17 October 2005 (UTC)


"Today, "London" usually refers to the conurbation known as Greater London, which is divided into thirty-two London Boroughs and the City of London." is a bit misleading. The conurbation extends quite a long way beyond Greater London in places and includes areas such as Watford, Dartford and Epsom, which are generally not considered London. Equally some parts of Greater London such as Biggin Hill are not part of the conurbation.

As there is an official region called simply "London", that covers an area identical to Greater London, is that not the straightforward modern definition of the term (one that is both officially sanctioned and conforms to popular usage)?

JimmyGuano 01:02, 17 October 2005 (UTC)

Jimmy, it would seem that from other talk pages there is a consensus forming that British cities should have three articles. One for city proper, i.e. City of London, one for the conurbation (and indeed the Wikipedia definition of what a city is), i.e. London, and one for the metropolitan county, i.e. Greater London. This seems to be what we have for London and has now been suggested by many people as being appropriate for both Manchester and Leeds. Maybe a more appropriate article name for what you are discussing would be something along the lines of London (Region). Please refer to the following:
EarlyBird 10:46, 17 October 2005 (UTC)

There are very good reasons for the London article to be a little vague and not be tied to a local government entity or indeed any one definition. This is because what is "London" is a little abstract. The following all could define London but no two match each other and none match up to any official local government definitions (either current or historic):

  1. The London postal area (that is the area that has "London" in its address) is much smaller than London but actually includes a very small area not in London.
  2. The 020 area code does not include all of Greater London but does include several places outside Greater London.
  3. The urban sprawl/continuous built-up area does not stretch all the way to the Greater London boundary in some places but goes well beyond it in others.
  4. The London Underground served area includes places outside Greater London
  5. The TfL travelcard zones include some places outside Greater London

I imagine most other UK cities are the same. MRSC 13:46, 17 October 2005 (UTC)

I agree that all of those are valid definitions for their specific purposes and are entirely relevant to mention in the way that they are mentioned.
My problem is not with the article as a whole or with referring to various different definitions of London, but with the one sentence that I highighted and for very specific reasons:
- It clearly implies that the conurbation is called Greater London and is divided into 32 boroughs. As you say in your point 3, the conurbation covers a different area to Greater London and the 32 boroughs, so in saying this the sentence isn't vague, it is simply wrong.
- It states (IMO correctly) that "London" is usually used to refer to Greater London, but it doesn't mention the fact that the two terms are geographically interchangable in official as well as common usage. IMO this is a significant and relevant extra piece of information.
- While it is useful to mention the "London Postal District" and "London commuter belt" etc, it seems perverse to do so while omitting to mention the one area whose offical name is simply "London", which is the region.
JimmyGuano 22:03, 18 October 2005 (UTC)
The article was treating Greater London and the London conurbation as the same thing again, when they are clearly different, so I have re-corrected it. I have also created a separate article for the Greater London Urban Area, which is officially defined to include areas normally considered to be outside London such as Hemel Hempstead.
JimmyGuano 22:33, 10 March 2006 (UTC)

tallest building

The article claims 1 canada square and 42 tower are both the tallest building. which is it?

Tower 42 or Natwest Tower is the tallest building in the City Of London, which is an area of London. One Canada Square is the tallest building in the whole of London. :) Singerisbored 22:15, 24 October 2005 (UTC)

London Portal

Hi - after seeing that New York (and Bucharest had their own portals, I was horrified to see that the greatest city on Earth did not. So I decided to create one... which was interesting in that I spent about 2 hours fiddling with columns and formatting that I didn't really understand just to get it to look right!

Anyway, there is SO much stuff out there on Wiki about London - every page about anything to do with London links to about 20 other London things that weren't there in the first place. It's a massive web of information basically, and so if some of you could help sort out the portal - fill in any missing bits and add stuff etc., it'd be sweet.

I've gottten most of my ideas off the New York portal, but just basic browsing gives you thousands of London-related pages...

Thanks anyway, Deano 11:44, 27 October 2005 (UTC)

I've just had a read of the discussions above, and I can't help feel that lots of the article-size issues can be effectively resolved now that there is an effective, working portal. G-Man - you started splitting sections of the main article into new ones - is that still going on or have you finished? In any case, newly created articles can be used as the title links for Template:London topics - at the moment we are using Category links for areas that do not have their own articles.
On the whole, I'd suggest that WikiProject London has huge potential for being one of the most comprehensive and streamlined sub-sections of Wikipedia, but in the short-term we should attempt to emulate New York. I like to think that the portal has already achieved this goal, but that is a drop in the ocean of how much the is left to do.
Deano 17:29, 29 October 2005 (UTC)


i am trying to get the article on London rid of this temptation of "who's the biggest around".

we all know there are two major cities in the EU. One is London, the other is Paris. Why do people want to state London is bigger when they do not have a single clue that allows them to make a comparison? There has been substantial debate on the surface/population ratio, the word metropolitan region and the word metropolitan area.

1)First of all, the surface / population ration may be the easiest to determine, it is still subject to controversy. How many potato fields are people going to include in their so called LMA limits until the figures finally say in a sigh of relief: Yesss, London is the bigest city in Europe?

2)The Metropolitan region. Those who want to see London as the biggest the brightest etc. may regret to use this steroid figure to try and make their city look even bigger: if we use that logic, England being an island, there will come a moment when this LMR will not grow bigger, while continental cities and MRs (like the Ruhr and its 30 millions, or the consolidating Lyon Paris Lille Brussels TGV-linked stretch of metropolitan areas) are growing at the speed of the fast trains that are putting them one hour or two from each other.

People who think ahead of figures and try to think what urban phenomena is really about all come with the same conclusions, that I personnally value: the concept of capital is useless. there are no more capitals. we are all linked by ever growing competitivity in transportation and communication services. While People debate to know if London is the biggest city in the EU, the political, economic and financial decision-making area is slowly but surely moving eastward.

We all understand that it is painful to some people to have to realize that there is no more empire and no more centre for this empire, but this has been the reality for the last decades. Let's just consider London is a major city in Europe, and display relevant figures (those who still look for data putting London on the lead will find some objective consolation in the financial aspects)


Can't say I totally agree with the above. Call a spade a spade - London is the biggest city in the EU. Anyone can make up a measure that makes Paris larger, but any objective measure makes London the largest city in the EU. Trying to argue otherwise is like trying to argue that China is not the most populous country on the planet - it's just not true. Deano 16:52, 8 November 2005 (UTC)

I don't find the issue of who has the biggest city all that interesting, though the stats do seem to indicate it is London. However, I'd take issue with the point about capital cities. Here the (unsigned) poster has missed the point about what 'urban phenomena is [sic] really about'. Certainly the EU is an increasingly intertwined and interconnected economic zone, but the amusing thing is that if anything this has, in an already highly urbanised and centralised UK, increased the role of London both as capital and major city, simply because of its geographical location. (This may not, of course, be a good thing.)
Add to this the fact that, in a nation whose demographic centre of gravity (for good or evil) is increasingly skewed to the southeast, precisely because of the above, London's role as cultural capital of the UK also takes on increasing significance. This last is not a mantle that can be easily assumed by Paris or any other Continental European city. Finally there is the role of London as administrative capital, once again indisputable.
The suggestion of post-imperial nostalgia is a bit of a slur and a non sequitur, by the way, the UK is mostly well beyond that. If anything it is, for example, France that will not let go of its colonial past. (My POV is in many ways francophile and definitely europhile, by the way.) Tarquin Binary 04:35, 10 November 2005 (UTC)
France is IME much more precious about the London/Paris struggle than Britain, on the whole people in the UK couldn't care less if London is the biggest, whereas the issue appears to obsess the French newspapers and so on; perhaps this is partly because of French fears about slipping in the international economic league as their backwards economy struggles along. (this latter comment is a joke of course - what the heck does Britain have to match airbus??) Anyway, just been doing some in-depth research on UN population sites and so on. Most sites seem to agree that the "London Travel to Work" area (a term beloved of population demographers) is the largest not just in the EU but in the whole of the European continent, with some 16-18 million people depending on definitions; France's comparable area, the Isle de France and some pieces of surrounding departements, consists of around 11.5 million people. When you get down to actual city boundaries or recognized contiguous mapped exurbia/inurbias, the London > Paris distinction gets even more marked, with for example a contiguous conurbia popn for London of 12.1 million and for Paris of only 7.9. So I think the facts point to London being larger on all definitions. Also of course most commentators agree London is one of the World Cities but not Paris. All of this is not good news IMO for Britain, which is hopelessly skewed politically and economically to the interests of the London upper middle and upper classes, their concerns and whims dominating even more so than Paris is normally seen to dominate France. Any takers for moving London to the USA?MarkThomas 08:14, 14 February 2006 (UTC)
Well, the "City of London" only has a population of 8,600.


yes, I have noticed some modenr atlases wher Paris has been magnified out of proportion (Collins) to cover an area about 10 times its real size. I suppose satellite pictures should be used instead.


Are we talking size? In terms of size, Greater London is larger than the Parisian Metropolitan area.

population? London has a population of 7.5M, and 12/14M in the Metropolitan Area, while Paris is about 2M in the city and 11M in the Metropolitan Area. By both accounts, London is bigger and more populous.

However, you will be surprised to find out that the Census in the Uk is not taken seriuosly, and the 7.5M inhabitants of London may well turn out to be more. ID cards are not compulsory, so data is not easy to come by in London. Not everybody fills in the census, especially from ethnic minorities and immgrants. To give you an example, the area I live in is still (according to the census) mainly white, while everybody who passes by will notice that about 70% of the population is not white.

When the 2001 census was carried out, of the 4 households that lived in my Victorian conversion, only 1 (mine) returned it.

The data is also contradicted by London for transport numbers, that show a disproportionate use of buses and trains, whereby every person in London would use public transport at least twice a day (it is very, very popular, but some old people, very young people, people who are sick/on holiday, not working using cars etc... will not be using public transport), and we know quite well that not all journeys are recorded (where there are n barriers, or the barriers are open, and when bus drivers do not count the passengers, which is not infrequent).

However, the minimum data we have is 7.5 in London and 12/14 in teh London Area.

As to the Rhur etc... also in the UK there are talks of 'Megacities', three to be precise, and one is the London/Birmingham area, which as you stated, is very easily accessible by train (London Manchester takes just above 3 hours...). Also remember that teh UK is the most densely populated country in the EU (apart from the Vatican, I suppose) and has the highest level of urbanisation in the world, so, it is not a surprise to find hugely populated areas. The whole Thames Valley is regarded as a huge urban area, with a unity of transport, dialect, and a central heart (London, in fact). The preceding unsigned comment was added by User:Adrian76 (talk • contribs) .

I once tried to carry out my own survey from scratch to compare the actual conurban populations of major british urban clusters with the favoured figures for city and conurban populations quoted in public places, the BBC, etc. To do this, I used Nomis and lots of maps and in fill-in time at boring moments at work, over a 6 month period, added up the population figures ward by ward. I then looked at immigration estimates and did lots of sums based on apocryphal sources such as friends in the census office, people who carried out the 01 census talking to journalists, etc. All of my sums pointed in radically different directions to the accepted figures. I figured out that the largest contiguous conurbations in popn are (1) London (2) Manchester-Liverpool (3) Birmingham-Wolverhampton and (4) West Yorkshire. The 100 top cities popn list as shown on Wikipedia is so much rubbish, my list was wildly different.
I also decided the total popn of the UK at any one time is at least 70m not roughly 60 as given in official figures. One striking thing is how many unregistered foreigners are thought to be in London on any given day; at least 1.5m by my estimates. This explains the huge gap between TFL LUL daily transit estimates (now based on laser scanners at key stations that count the bodies in and out - these also incidentally reveal that despite LUL's best efforts, at least 6% of passengers routinely do not pay!) and the Mayor of London popn estimates - even just on those figures there must be at least 15% more people in Metro London than the MoL claims. All very interesting - I think the UK Govt know about this but don't tell people as it would stir up claims of incompetence. A good example - media reports say there are about 300,000 Russians now living in London. I have not been able to discover any official decision allowing this to happen, and ministers never comment on it or answer PQs properly on it. Why? MarkThomas 11:44, 15 February 2006 (UTC)
Yes, I totally see your problem. Too many people live in London 'unofficially' and even those who live here officially do not need to be 'registered', so no one knows how many people really live in london. It is due to a long history of anti-centralism: the UK still has not got a registration network as most countries do. people register voluntarily to vote, to the GP's to school, to have an i-d etc... so no single reguister is complete or reliable. The cnsus, as I said is just a joke! I was teaching Foreigners in 2001 (FE): NONE of them returned the censyus, they were all afraid it was a way of 'catching them out' even if they were here legally... WE will never really know, we'll just have to estimate forever (ID cards are not really on the way, it seems, either)


The page was getting pretty heavy so I've shifted everything before mid-October into Archive 2. Hope nobody disagrees too much with my decision... I'm fairly sure all the topics archived were dead... Deano 23:16, 9 November 2005 (UTC)

London poverty, squalor

Hi, nowhere in this article is there a mention of one of the most striking aspects of London and one if its sources of infamy, from the early 1800s till now - the large number of poor neighbourhoods and ghettoes that make up London. Since we're writing a modern, informative article, and not a touristy fluff piece, there's no need to be squeamish or genteel about these things, I think we ought to mention all the stuff that inspired Engels, Orwell, and other famous writers, and some of the problems that continue to plague the city. I'm trying to effect the same on other city articles. -- Simonides 23:54, 14 November 2005 (UTC)

The London article is already long (not surprisingly). I would be inclined to replace the Business section with a better written (but still brief) Economy of London section which can mention some of these issues (and other important things), and a seperate more detailed article covering the history and current issues. I might at least make a stub for Economy of London (probably the best title?) as there is currently only a (rather sparse) Category:Economy of London. But there is lots to work with - I see Henry Mayhew has a short article which is good. Justinc 00:50, 15 November 2005 (UTC)
Tend to agree with you, (except that I wouldn't use the word ghetto too often. It's hard, I think, to find ghettoes in London in the strict sense of the word, which is not to say that they may not end up being created if care isn't taken.) Anyway, poor neighbourhoods, agreed. At the moment, I'm trying to make sure that we have some social housing photos on the Commons, but only have a couple, and the temptation is to show the sort of grand porticos that the older LCC estates often possess. (Oh, and I don't mean to imply that all tenants of social housing are deprived, usually it's a much better situation to be in than private rental, but we have a fair few problem estates up here in Hackney.) Some real grotty street pics would be handy too. Be nice to show the other side of the coin... Tarquin Binary 18:20, 15 November 2005 (UTC)
This is too vast a topic to deal with in this article but it is already touched on, and should be expanded on, in History of London. Any romantic idea about there still being ghettos of poverty in London, such as the East End should be dispelled right now. The real poverty, or social exclusion, in the UK is not in London at all; it is in rural places where there is no access to public transport and services. Where children and the elderly do not travel free (as they do in London). Where large estates are miles distant from good housing (and schools) - unlike London where social and private housing is adjacent in every borough from Tower Hamlets to Westminster. Where there is no access to large supermarkets with discounted prices, no access to any job markets, libraries etc. etc. MRSC 18:41, 15 November 2005 (UTC)
I think we'd have to say there were different indices of deprivation, so I don't entirely agree. Like on several, Hackney is counted in the top three most deprived areas in the UK, but on employment, no, you're right there. I would agree that I'd rather be poor in London (and I have been) than poor in rural Oxfordshire, say. It's cheaper to be poor here, for a start, as you pointed out :) And we should be clear that there are no ghettos. More social housing pix added, by the way, that I just happened to take today. Actually those are quite des res-type estates, in fact - I'm just working up to try to show that Hoxton isn't all YBAs, it wasn't really about poverty as such. :) Tarquin Binary 19:37, 15 November 2005 (UTC)
"ghettos of poverty" have never been romantic. And travel in London has always been free to the poor - they walked. While Cornwall is I think technically the poorest part of the UK (and the only county without a University), London has always appeared on the EU lists of deprived places. Inequality is much higher. But unlike many cities poverty is not ghettoised by location, or less so. London is one of 9 areas in the UK that gets EU Objective 2 funding for example. But the main point is that we have no article about the economy of London, what makes it rich or poor. Justinc 00:44, 16 November 2005 (UTC)

Corrected a few things

I have corrected the following points in the introduction:

  1. "London is the largest, most populous city in the European Union"
    I have deleted "largest". Greater London (1,580 km²), if we consider it as a city (but that's another debate), is smaller than the city of Cáceres, Spain (1,768 km²).
  2. "with an estimated population on 1 January 2005 of 7,421,328 and a metropolitan area population of 13,945,000."
    I have replaced the 13,945,000 figure with a more neutral "and several million more living in the metropolitan area". I remind people that the UK Office for National Statistics does not define metropolitan areas, therefore there is no official figure for the metropolitan area of London. Private researchers have tried to give a figure for the metropolitan area, but none agree on the exact limit of that metropolitan area, therefore there are many figures that circulate. The estimates for the metropolitan area of London generally vary from a minimum of 11 million to a maximum of 14 million. Check for instance this research paper for a list of diverging figures for the metropolitan area of London: [1], page 2. To pick one of these numbers and present it as THE number is simply POV. To remain neutral we have to be somewhat vague and say "several million more", or if people prefer we can say that there are "between 11 and 14 million inhabitants in the metropolitan area depending on sources", either way.
  3. "making the capital the most linguistically diverse city in the world (London: Multilingual capital of the world, A Buncombe and T MacArthur, The Independent, London, 29 March 1999)."
    This statement is simply untrue, although it pretends to be based on a newspaper article, but then we all know that not everything that is written in newspaper is necessarily true. At the 1999 French census the INSEE conducted a language survey and found that 450+ languages were spoken in Paris. And in New York City or Los Angeles there are also hundreds of languages spoken by the millions of immigrants from all around the world that live there. I think it is a bit ridiculous to try to determine which city is "the most linguistically diverse". All the largest metropolises of the western world, such as NYC, LA, Paris, or London, are bound to have hundreds of languages, due to immigrant communities. What's more, it all comes down to the definition of the word "language". Are Serbian and Croatian two different languages or just two dialects of the same language? Is Bihari a dialect of Hindi or a separate language? You get the point. So I have replaced the statement with a more neutral "one of the most linguistically diverse cities in the world". Hardouin 13:10, 19 November 2005 (UTC)
I agree with this last point. London might be one of the most linguistically diverse cities in the world, but I am not sure that this claim is anything but civic boosterism. How do you prove it? What sources are there for it, besides a British newspaper article? Moreover, how do you define "diverse"? Is it purely a qualitative analysis (e.g. "there are native speakers of 324 languages living in London as of February 15, 2006")? Or is it a quantitative analysis (e.g. "there are more languages widely spoken in London by significant linguistic communities than in any other city"). If there is only one person in town that speaks a rare inuit dialect, does that count towards the diversity? Or is some sort of critical mass of speakers of that dialect required? Further, in terms of each person, are we counting languages spoken at home, languages spoken most of the time, mother languages or all languages spoken to any degree? I speak Polish, but overwhelmingly speak English in my life. Do I count as an English speaker, or a Polish speaker, or both?

When the United Nations Development Programme looked at cities with foreign-born population in 2004, London ranked 8th, behind (in order) Miami, Toronto, L.A., Vancouver, New York City, Signapore, Sydney and Abidjan ([2]). I know these stats are in no way determinative of linguistic diversity (most notably, someone could be domestically born and speak a "minority language"), and some cities on the list are likely far less linguistically diverse than London (e.g. Miami's foreign-born population overwhelmingly speaks Spanish or Haitian Creole). However, the stats do suggest that there are other cities who can claim significant linguistic diversity on par with London.

For these reasons, I have my doubts that this is a verifiable claim. Skeezix1000 21:22, 15 February 2006 (UTC)


I don't want to get bogged down in this argument again personally but can I remind those editing this page at the moment of the three revert rule. Thanks. MRSC 15:46, 20 November 2005 (UTC)

The anonymous user, who has been editing this article repeatedly since November 11, never expresses him/herself, never gives a summary title to his/her edits, and never writes anything on the discussion page, therefore it is quite difficult to discuss this rationally with him/her. I suggest you check the history of his/her contributions to Wikipedia (Contributions: That says a lot about his/her obsessions. Hardouin 18:05, 20 November 2005 (UTC)


There is a difference between the size of a city (London) and the administrative area of a town or even village. Even Ravenna, in Italy, has an administrative area of about 1,500Km like london, but the built up area a few square kilometers, by no means one of the largest cities in teh world. London, on teh other hand, extends well past its administartive area (greater london) as do most great cities.

Four global cities

I don't know if this has been discussed before, but who decided the 'four global cities' mentioned in the intro? The phrasing makes it sound like it is something official, which I don't believe it is. We can surely indicate London's eminence among cities without having to resort to an arbitrary list. DJ Clayworth 16:11, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

It looks like someone's original research to me, and highly contentious original research at that, so I have removed it, SqueakBox 16:40, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

Contentious? I always thought it was an accepted fact that they were THE four global cities... apparently not... Deano 17:14, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

--Just look at the article for global city, the four listed are part of the GAWC rankings, and more importantly, there is nearly universal agreement among people who study the topic about the inclusion of these four. I really don't think there's anything contentious about it, even people who live in LA or Hong Kong would likely acknowledge this. --Jleon 17:11, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

A classificatory system like that linked is fine, but there is also the functional categorisation from the original World City concept in which there are THREE first rank world cities (bye-bye Paris) defined by their specific functional role at the top of the world financial hierarchy (Friedmann, J (1986) 'The World City Hypothesis' Development and Change, Vol 17 pp 69-83. and Friedman, J and Wolff, G (1982) 'World City Formation: An Agenda for Research and Action' International Journal of Urban and Regional Research, Vol 6 No.3, pp.319-344). The classificatory approach appears to be the one on common usage now, despite being barren of any explanatory power: you pays yer money.... Icundell 18:09, 23 November 2005 (UTC)
The fact that those categorisations, using specific financially weighted criteria, are in Global city is not a reason to put them in this more generalised article. It is the height of POV for this article to promote London as one of the 4 major cities in the world, whereas our primary duty is to create a POV neutral article, SqueakBox 19:42, 23 November 2005 (UTC)
May I reiterate the comments of Jleon - the four global cities are almost universally recognised. Something that is universally recognised is not POV. The four global cities are therefore not POV. "It is the height of POV for this article to promote London as one of the 4 major cities in the world, whereas our primary duty is to create a POV neutral article". Given that the four global cities are accepted by nearly all academics in the field, methinks it is "our duty" to include such information in the article. Deano 20:40, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

Academic beliefs aren't the only factor to be taken into consideration in any encyclopedic article. I don't believe it is a generally accepted view that these are the world's 4 greatest cities by other than a minority of people, and that most people who don't live in the US, UK, Japan and France would dispute this claim. It seems unnecesarily contentious to place such a claim in the article. In other criteria like beauty a city like Rio might well come out on top. In terms of historical ruins what about Rome and Athens. All these categories are valid for a general London article. And why Paris? Why Tokyo for that matter? Some wider sourcing of this claim would be helpful at this point, SqueakBox 21:02, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

Well I think you have changed the remit slightly. The four cities are the four "global"<\u> cities, and what makes them such is clearly set out in the linked article. True, in terms of beauty, history etc. etc. they may not be there, but these areas are irrelevant. The concept of the "global cities" is set out in the article, and it defines the four major global cities as London, NYC, Paris and Tokyo.
You changed this by saying I don't believe it is a generally accepted view that these are the world's 4 greatest cities by other than a minority of people. No one is claiming the title "greatest cities", as that is clearly POV. But the concept of the "global city" has been around for decades and it is clear in its definitions and remains largely unchallenged across the world. Of course, being a global city does not make it a "great" city - I agree that only a minority would claim these to the the four greatest cities. But they are, undisputably, the four global cities - the link provided with the claim was the Wikipedian evidence to back the claim. Deano 21:15, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

It should then get a small mention at the bottom of the article, not in the opening, and with other points of view, ie they are not the greatest, most interesting, etc, SqueakBox 21:21, 23 November 2005 (UTC)

-Well nobody is saying they are the greatest or most interesting, and it's not our fault if a small number of people misunderstand the term "global city". The line is also mentioned on both the NYC and Paris article intros.. --Jleon 00:38, 27 November 2005 (UTC)

The idea of "global cities" is probably misunderstood by most of the people who read this page, me included. This phrase has connotations that must be explained (appartently, "global" actually means "financial" here...). So I think the article should cite its source by saying something like: "London is one of the world's major global cities in the Globalization and World Cities Study Group & Network's classification" or "in GaWK's classification". Thbz 12:47, 14 December 2005 (UTC)

The term "global city" is wikilinked in the article. If someone wants to know its exact definition, they can click on the link. That's the whole purpose in the wikilink. The term is used with no connotations other than those referred to in the said article. Deano 17:26, 14 December 2005 (UTC)

Many writers on the subject do not class Paris as a world city, primarily on language grounds since it is considered rather stuck within the insular Francophone mode. I heard about a survey recently conducted amongst the French which showed that 81% of them considered London to be "more important" or "significantly more important" in world terms than Paris. I think the global cities page on Wikipedia is in error as actually cities like Montreal, Sydney and Mumbai all have a better claim to be world cities now than does poor isolated and declinining Paris. MarkThomas 16:21, 3 March 2006 (UTC)

Requested articles

Please compile a list of requested articles here. The list is references on the London Portal. Deano 23:41, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

Museums and galleries

The internal links contained in this section point to non-existent sections. Either the article should have a list of museums and galleries under London tourist attractions separated from the places of interest or the Museum and galleries section and its contents should be removed. I note that the British Museum, the Natural History Museum, the Science Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the National Gallery and the Museum of London are all missing from the attractions list. The last is inexcusable considering the subject of the article! I suggest that the tourists attractions section should have a Museums and Galleries section even if items listed within it a linked elswhere in the section. Some users may go straight to that section. DavidCane 02:30, 20 December 2005 (UTC)

Featured articles/pictures

The London Portal is now registering votes for next month's Featured Article and Featured Picture. Please vote:

Deano 10:04, 20 December 2005 (UTC)

Sport in London

Sport in London; I think a main article needs to be created for this area - there is clearly lots to be said but it is taking up far to much room here. Anyone else agree? 20px Deano 14:01, 21 December 2005 (UTC)

I agree, go for it. Grunners 14:49, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

For now, I've just copy/pasted the content from here to there. THe new page needs a colloassal amount of work, importing relevant pictures from all the relevant places and lifted text from the relevant articles. I'm really busy at the moment so anyone who can contribute please help - Sport in London! Also, the section under "Sport" on this article needs to be tidied up. 20px Deano (Talk) 16:28, 30 December 2005 (UTC)

I've expanded the section in this article and made a start at expanding Sport in London, but it's still pretty thin. Qwghlm 00:33, 14 January 2006 (UTC)

Big Ben

This has been mentioned before, but just riterating that Big Ben is the bell inside the clocktower, which itself has no official name. Have edited the photo caption accordingly. Grunners 14:49, 28 December 2005 (UTC)

No map?

I needed a map showing where London is in England, but can't find one in the article. Can someone add one? Badagnani 21:07, 10 January 2006 (UTC)

Good point. There was one but someone saw fit to remove it. MRSC 21:18, 10 January 2006 (UTC)


should we put in the fact about london being twice the size of new york? billy turner

probably not, because statistics like that are always liable to POV. On what basis is it "twice the size"? What defines the "size of a city"? It's a no-go area. Anglo-Indian identity.svg Deano (Talk) 21:56, 15 January 2006 (UTC)
ok billy turner

--He must be referring to the geographic area of Greater London. This contains about 7.4 million people within 1,500 sq km, while New York City has 8.2 million people within 830 sq km. Either way its not factual to say that London is twice the "size" of NYC, since size generally refers to a city's population. Also, the metropolitan area of New York contains almost twice as many people as the metro area of London. --Jleon 15:19, 26 January 2006 (UTC)

Yes, London is twice the size of new York. The fact is that New York is heavily built up with high rises, while London sprawls with low houses and parks.

Demographics pic caption

In what way does the picture show "one of London's ethnic communities"? A better caption or picture would be good. JPD (talk) 11:39, 31 January 2006 (UTC)

Ouch. I agree. That's a not very good pic of mine depicting Kingsland Waste, this is a very ethnically mixed area, but that doesn't show on the pic. I didn't know it was here. I think I have better stuff to illustrate this, so I will replace it shortly. Tarquin Binary 12:11, 31 January 2006 (UTC)
Ridley Road one used instead and caption now altered. (Not right to describe the area as one 'ethnic community' when it's lots...) Not happy still, will try to get something better. Tarquin Binary 00:58, 1 February 2006 (UTC)

Having the sat picture there is kind of odd. Justinc 00:35, 2 February 2006 (UTC) Also I believe that there are now more Poles than Irish in London, but I havent got a source right now. Justinc 00:35, 2 February 2006 (UTC)

Also this site [3] has some language figures. Justinc 00:37, 2 February 2006 (UTC)


The section detailing weather conditions is a misrepresentation of reality. Firstly to refer to a London summer as 'warm' is a matter of opinion and as such is a Point Of View. Secondly, the only temperatures mentioned are extremes and certainly don't give the reader a good representation of average/normal london weather.

According to this site:

The average July and August temperature is 17 degrees C. From the point of view of a person who grew up in a tropical or sub-tropical climate, the only word to describe 17 degrees is Cold. Not warm and definitely not hot.


  • Rewrite section to highlight the extreme temperatures and also include the other end of the extremes
  • Add seasonal average temperatures to properly represent London weather
  • Remove non-NPOV and ambiguous terms such as 'warm' and 'hot'.
  • Add sources for all weather data

Not sure who is the best authority to quote on UK weather but unless there are valid objections i'll be making these changes. Factoid Killer 23:09, 8 February 2006 (UTC)

I find it hard to believe that the average temperature in July is 17 degrees...

Everyone finds it hard to believe what the average temp in their location is. The nature of the human brain is that it remembers the extremes and not the norm. Take a moment to consider what the word 'average' means. Ask someone from Brisbane, Austrlia what the avg summer temp is and they will claim something like 32 or even 36. The actual is 29 according to the bureau of meteorology.

If you can find a better source post it Factoid Killer 12:15, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

Summers ARE warm in London, and it rains less than in Rome. Average temperature of 17 includes day and night. The Average day temp[erature is much higher.
You're right about the 17 figure. It's not the mean daily high it was merely the mean daily temp (see my recent edits in the climate section of the article). The average daily high temperature is 21.5 degrees. Whether that is considered to be warm, hot or cold is completely a matter of opinion and POINT of VIEW. Where I come from that would be close to the average daily high temperature during the winter months. In my opinion 21.5 degrees is cold. In the interests of Neurtral Point of View it is best to be more specific about weather conditions than to simply suggest london has warm summers.
As for rainfall, i've noticed three separate articles for cities in temperate regions where they've compared the city to a subtropical city and stated there is less rainfall. A statement like that can be deceiving. If you're going to compare the rainfall in this temperate city to that of a subtropical city it should also be noted that the temperate city has more rainy days and that subtropical cities generally get their rainfall from heavier showers over much shorter periods. Factoid Killer 11:39, 26 March 2006 (UTC)

the sports section

you know how it says football in the sports section of this article? does it mean american football, or like 'soccer' football?MichaelHa 03:00, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

I agree. Use of the word 'football' alone is both ambiguous and non-NPOV. There are 6 separate sports that call themsevles football. Having said that i'm sure MichaelHa doesn't seriously suspect it could be American football. 09:30, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

I've changed the first reference to 'football' in the sport section to 'football (soccer)' which is the name of the article it was referencing anyway. This should negate any confusion. Factoid Killer 12:13, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

The Capital?

The article starts off by claiming London is the capital of both England and the United Kingdom. A few paragraphs down its explained that London isn't really the capital of anything but people think of it that way.

If the second statement is correct (and it does contradict the first) and we find it acceptable I might just jump over to the New York City article and proclaim that city to be the capital of the world. Factoid Killer 11:34, 9 February 2006 (UTC)

laws do not need to be written down in teh UK, therefore, the very fact that London is teh site of Parliament, Government and the main residence of Her Majesty the Queen makes it the capital. The preceding unsigned comment was added by User:Adrian76 (talk • contribs) .

The article starts of declaring London as the capital of England and the UK - an undisputed fact due to the amazing nature of common law. A few paragraphs down, it explains that due to the nature of common law, London has become the Capital without any official declaration - in no way does this suggest that it is not the Capital. Anglo-Indian identity.svg Deano (Talk) 22:40, 14 February 2006 (UTC)
Perhaps that second part could be worded better. To an outsider like me it just read as though it's the capital only in the minds of the people. Factoid Killer 12:20, 15 February 2006 (UTC)
Okay I've amended it slightly... though not really to my satisfaction. However, at the moment I'm quite hungry so I'm gonna have some lunch. Anglo-Indian identity.svg Deano (Talk) 12:26, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

From my understanding of terminology in constitutional law, I believe that it would be more accurate to state that London is the capital of the UK by (unwritten, constitutional) convention, rather than that it is so through common law, with inherent ambiguities as to the context ascribed to the term common law (and possible implications of a case law precedent for London being capital of the UK by referring to the common law). "Convention" is always the term ascribed by lawyers to unwritten constiutional rules. It is via the organic (perhaps unique?) evolution of the UK constitution and its unwritten conventions, and not the unique characteristics of English common law, that London is the de facto capital. IP 22:34, 15 February 2006 (UTC)

That is an interesting take on things... I must say you are probably right. I doubt there has ever been a case when London has been challenged as Capital, therefore common law would not be correct. Convention is the key - perhaps you could edit the said paragraph accordingly? Anglo-Indian identity.svg Deano (Talk) 15:15, 16 February 2006 (UTC)

What about the claim that London is the capital of England? Certainly there's no statute, unlike capitals for Scotland and Wales. Convention? Doubtful; by convention, a capital is the seat of the government, and England does not have a government. Clearly, if England has a capital, it's London, but I'm just not sure that makes it such a clear (and important) fact to justify its prominence in this introduction. To put it another way: what source could one cite in defence of this claim? I'd suggest removing mention of England in the first line, and noting further down that de facto, London is also the capital of England, although there is no English government per se. GabrielRozenberg 16:29, 21 February 2006 (UTC)

London was the capital of the Kingdom of England before the UK existed. I think that Winchester was capital of England in the early middle ages. But since the time of William the Conquerer, no challenge has been made to London for capital status. G-Man * 19:30, 21 February 2006 (UTC)
"To put it another way: what source could one cite in defence of this claim?". I think the issue here is that you cannot cite any source that contradicts this fact. The same reasons for London being the Capital of the UK apply for being the Capital of England. As G-Man said, London was capital of England long before the UK existed. It became capital of the UK because it is capital of England. DJR (Talk) 21:31, 21 February 2006 (UTC)
Philosophically speaking, if it's impossible to cite a source in contradiction of a fact, then it's not verifiable - and therefore has no place here. Less pretentiously: yes, London was the capital of England when England was a self-governing entity. But it is not any more (despite DJR your stated keenness for that to happen!). A capital is the seat of government of an area. England does not have a government, therefore, it does not have a capital. (Just like Wales, from 1535 when it ceased to exist as an independent entity, to 1955, when there was an official proclamation, did not have a capital.) I'm not saying we shouldn't mention it at all in the article. I'm just saying that to start the whole thing with the statement "London is the capital city of England..." gives a misleading impression. Gabriel R 22:03, 22 February 2006 (UTC)
The governance of England as an entity is performed in London. Regardless of whether England has devolved powers to form its own government, it is governed from London. Therefore London is its Capital city. England has to be governed from somewhere... DJR (Talk) 23:55, 22 February 2006 (UTC)
A capital is the seat of government of an area. - .. from 1535 when it ceased to exist as an independent entity, to 1955, when there was an official proclamation, [Wales] did not have a capital - and yet until the creation of the devolved assembly the governence of Wales remained in London. Thus your first statement contradicts your second. The Capital of England is London and no official proclamation or other ruling has stated that it isn't. Jooler 07:53, 23 February 2006 (UTC)

Removed word fake from attempted bombings.

Deleted fake from attempted bombings, as there is no evidence that the devices in question were fake 09:05, 22 February 2006 (UTC)

Added PoV tag

The statement about Global cities should NOT be in the opening spiel of the article on London. This is a woolly subjective subject, and the only meaningful study on it was by a group of students at Loughborough university. London, Tokyo, Paris and NYC being the four global cities is not a fact, it's just someone's opinion. The balance of opinion in the previous discussion on this topic seemed to be that it should not be there either. Please can we try to resolve this issue. SteveRwanda 16:09, 27 February 2006 (UTC)

In that case the information on the wikipedia article Global city is wrong. Whilst the information remains as stated on the said page, surely it is perfectly justified to refer to it in this article. DJR (Talk) 16:48, 27 February 2006 (UTC)
I dispute the content of that article as well, but it's just slightly less mainstream than the London article and is also guarded zealously by a user called E Pluribus Anthony who won't hear of changes. The contention arises because information there and here is not wrong - it is the result of a survey which was made and published by a 'Global and World Cities group' and is hence 'verifiable', but I just don't give much time of day to such studies - they're totally subjective, totally POV, and in this case based solely on financial criteria, which gives them no right to be masquerading as 'the four global cities' as if this is an unarguable fact. That's all... My vote would be for dumbing down the Global Cities article and reducing it to, at most, a 'Trivia' footnote in the articles of the cities themselves. — SteveRwanda 08:17, 28 February 2006 (UTC)
I'd tread very carefully, SteveRwanda, before making any accusations or misrepresentations about editorial intransigence. I, and other, editors have no objection to editing or improving the article: anyone reading the talk page and archives will observe that. Through rhetoric and bluster, you and other detractors have not – and still not – demonstrated why germane information about this topic (e.g., the GaWC list) should be nixed. All I see is haphazard analysis and wilful demands to change or remove disagreeable content: no valid criticism of the topic. Moreover, your support of forking the article is a contorted way of skirting the issue. If you have no "time" for such studies, and clarifying or improving upon information which already arguably conforms to the five pillars, editors should not afford more time in responding to your concerns about them. E Pluribus Anthony | talk | 12:03, 28 February 2006 (UTC)
OK, I retract the personal comments. Apologies. The new phrasing in the article is somewhat better, although it now has a slightly weaselish look about it... Is it really 'widely regarded' as such? I don't know, but I'm not convinced. Google searches for "global cities" don't really show up very much of interest. — SteveRwanda 14:48, 28 February 2006 (UTC)

--The POV tag was an absolute disgrace. I got rid of it and qualified the global city stuff with "is widely considered to be..." --Jleon 14:14, 28 February 2006 (UTC)

You need to search google more carefully - the term "global city" does not arise from a bunch of students at Loughborough University. It was coined by the distinguished sociologist and economist Saskia Sassen (around 1991? - there are earlier attributions to other authors, but the term seems to be generally associated with her work) to define key cities of the global capitalist economy and she has specifically identified New York, London and Tokyo amongst others. The term is definitely part of the vocabulary of the globalization debate/discourse. Links: Bwithh 21:20, 28 February 2006 (UTC)

Sister cities

I removed the "sister cities" section, since I don't believe either of the cities listed have a sister city relationship with London. The GLA website does not contain any mention of sister cities. JPD (talk) 15:16, 28 February 2006 (UTC)

On further investigation, the New York City website does describe the NY-London relationship. However, London is not on the list of sister cities of the City of Sydney, and there is no body representing the whole metropolitan area in Sydney anyway. I don't know whether the single sister city NY is enough to justify a whole section of this article on sister cities. JPD (talk) 15:39, 28 February 2006 (UTC)


Cities in the UK are very specific in their boundaries, whereas in the US, areas outside the official limits are included within the City creating false estimates of population. If this was used in the case of London, then you could argue that London (in the city, not regional or metro context) has a population over 8 million based on it urbanised area. LA is officially defined as The City of Los Angeles. Hollywood, San-fernando Valley and Compton, to name just a few, are actually seperate Cities on the Outskirts of LA's boundaries (All within LA County, which is usually seen as one bid built up area defining the City)but are included as the whole City! In the case of New York City, this isnt so as it is surrounded by water, with The Bronx being the only New York Borough on mainland America.

A City doesnt need to be defined as that within any particular administrative area or authority, it could be simply a large, contingous, urban area. Urban areas immediately surrounding London's boundaries that physically merge together can be counted and possibly should be counted as London as well.

To long??

This page on London is ridiculously long, some articles just aren't relevant...they should be merged into the "see also" section!!! —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jackp (talkcontribs)


continued in Archive 4...