?? A tour around Kingston Upon Thames 金士頓一日遊 ??
I used to live near Kingston upon Thames in England which is about 20km south west of London. Kingston, as it is more commonly known, is an ancient Saxon town and has records of its existence as far back as 838.
My home used to be a 15 minutes walk to Kingston town. It’s a beautiful walk along the Thames River. Today I want to show you around the historical town of Kingston.
Kingston historical market is said to have started around 1200 and now it is still open everyday. When I went back last month it was on a late Sunday afternoon and most of the stalls had started to close down already so it wasn’t very busy. But if you go on a Saturday, particularly in the summer it is a very busy and vibrant market. Every year in Christmas they also have a traditional German Christmas market which is worth going to if you are around then.
據說，金士頓市集從1200年已存在，至今每天仍然營運。 我上個月回去的時候，剛好是星期日下午，大部分攤檔已準備休息， 所以比較冷清。 如果是星期六，尤其在夏天去，人來人往的市集會非常熱鬧。 每年聖誕節時候，那裡會舉辦傳統聖誕市集，在倫敦的話很值得去喔。
Some of the buildings around the market square have been preserved quite well from the old days such as this one on the left which seems like it has been around since 1422! The other one on the right is from 1909, young by England’s standard. Although there are modern day shops inside, they have kept the shop front quite traditional so it doesn’t look out of place with the building.
Another really old part of Kingston upon Thames is the Clattern Bridge which is the oldest bridge in London. It’s quite a narrow bridge across the Hogsmill River (a tributary of the River Thames) and is believed to have been built around 1180.
金士頓另一古蹟是 Clattern Bridge，倫敦最古舊的橋。這道橋應該建於大概 1180年，橫跨泰晤士河其中一條支流 Hogsmill River，真可算是小橋流水。
The bridge is along one of the roads coming into town and many people aren’t actually aware of it and its historical significance because you don’t really notice it when you go past. In fact I was never aware of it until one day I suddenly noticed this sign on the side of the road.
There are newer parts of Kingston as well, such as this main shopping center, Bentalls. This has pretty much everything I need which meant I never had to go into London to do my shopping (not that I did much of it the recent years).
除了古蹟，金士頓也有它現代化的一面，例如這座大型購物商場 Bentalls。裡面商店包羅萬有，我根本不用跑到倫敦市中心購物 (其實在倫敦後期已沒甚麼購物的意欲)。
Often I like going into Bentalls just to admire the structure of the shopping centre. The building is five storeys tall (that’s a lot of shopping to do!) and there is a massive see through arch ceiling which runs along the entire building. It gives the whole building a very open and airy feeling. Apparently according to Wikipedia, the ceiling here is even taller than the nave of Westminster Abbey and the dome at St Paul’s Cathedral in London! Bentall’s another claim to fame is that is has the world’s longest single truss escalator, that’s where an escalator is only supported at the top and bottom. I never realised this before when I was on the escalator, all I knew was that it was a long ride and I remember feeling a bit worried because there was no support in the middle. Now I know! (The longest escalator is actually longer than the one in the photo)
每次到 Bentall 我都很喜歡欣賞它的大樓建築。商場樓高五層，頂部有一個拱形大天窗橫跨整座商場，讓外面的白雲陽光直射到室內。根據維基百科，商場的高度比倫敦威斯敏斯特(西敏寺)修道院的中殿和聖保羅大教堂的圓形屋頂還要高。商場另一項記錄，是有一道全世界最長而中間完全沒支撐的自動電梯。以前我用這電梯時也留意到它很長，而且中間沒支撐曾經也有點擔心，原來是世界之最。失敬！失敬！（最長一道電梯比照片中的還要長）
I want to leave you with the most famous feature from Kingston upon Thames – Out of Order. This is a stack of 12 iconic red telephone boxes leaning against one another like a pack of dominoes. If you ever visit Kingston, and its worth going as you can take a lovely stroll along the River Thames, make sure to check out this modern piece of art.
最後，我想帶大家去看看金士頓最有名的地標 – Out of Order。這是12座最能標示英國的紅色電話亭，像骨牌般疊在一起。如果你有機會到訪金士頓 (絕對是我的推介，因為可以順道去泰晤士河畔散步) 記得要去看看這座現代藝術品噢！
中文版特別加插的冷知識 : 金士頓大學，排行榜蠻低，算是很水的一族。不過港澳也有名人曾經在這裡就讀。包括澳門賭王何氏家族一位千金，哪一房哪一位小姐就不記得了。另一位名人是香港的陳奕迅。他入學後，回香港參加歌唱比賽贏了冠軍後沒有再回去，從此樂壇多了一顆天皇巨星。幾年前，金士頓大學頒了一個榮譽博士學位給陳奕迅，他在典禮上還高歌一曲””天下無雙!