This book is intended to be the first of a series documenting London Streets and a thousand years of their respective histories. Clearly some routes were only trackways, pathways or even fields but where Londoners have existed, worked, fought, traded, played, lived and died on the site it’s fascinating to mark the journey, growth, sights and sounds of these iconic London thoroughfares. Denmark Street wasn’t built until the 1680s, but fascinating characters from all walks of life have been active on the site since the 1000s at least. Royalty, singers, musicians, highwaymen, murderers, thieves, arsonists, inventors, pioneers, regicides, politicians, revolutionaries, songwriters, poets and artists are all part of the colourful past of the street that became known as Tin Pan Alley.
Mike Read was created a Knight of Malta in 2011 and is Chairman of the British Plaque Trust. During 2018 he expanded the Blue Plaque scheme into the Commonwealth. Mike is also an Ambassador for the Prince’s Trust and founder of the Rupert Brooke Museum & Society. Mike has won ten National Broadcaster of the Year Awards, an International Music award and has been awarded the Gold Badge of Merit by the British Academy for his special contribution to Britain’s music industry. He has been a household name in Britain for over 35 years having fronted three top-rated long-running TV series, Top of the Pops, Pop Quiz & Saturday Superstore and three national radio breakfast shows, including Radio One, Classic FM and currently United DJs Radio. 2016 saw him still presenting front line programmes for the BBC as well as producing and presenting a new TV series, Tin Pan Alley, which ran for 8 weeks on Sky. During 2016 and 2017 he was writing, shooting, producing and presenting a six-part series, Jamaicaphiles. A best-selling author, he has had some forty books published. Mike has written several film scripts, had eight musicals staged and penned songs for over forty major artists as well as having several chart hits, twice topping the Independent Singles Chart and recently writing a No.1 in the North American Chart. 2019 sees his musical Great Expectations undertaking another national tour. He has played himself in such perennial TV favourites as Only Fools and Horses and Midsomer Murders and has interviewed 100s of major artists on his live TV show and on stage. Mike has also presented for and worked with most of the Royal Family. He regularly travels to different parts of the world broadcasting or giving talks.