Ever wondered where Cabbie’s chill out, exchange anecdotes, share stories they’ve overheard in the back of their cab, warm up and have a cuppa? Well, the answer is within their Cabmen’s shelters. For those of you that know London well you may well have seen the Cabbie’s shelters dotted around the city and wondered what these Green Huts are used for.
There are 12 green huts dotted around central London built by the Cabmen’s Shelter Fund (established in 1875). They were once part of a much larger network, but today, only 12 remain in use. The diminutive sheds, each built no bigger than a horse and cart (in line with Metropolitan Police rules of that time) provide shelter and sustenance for the City’s hard-working Cabbies. Only licensed drivers who have passed The Knowledge test – memorising every street, landmark and route in London – are allowed inside.
Every Christmas our faith in humanity is restored when Kate Simmonds, who runs the flagship Green Hut in Russell Square, offers free food/Christmas dinners to London’s homeless, and this year will be no exception. On Friday 20th December 2019, food will be available all day (from 7am to 7pm) free of charge to the homeless AND the emergency services.
This year, Kate has an extra mission up her sleeve. From now until Christmas day Kate is aiming to get every London Taxi Driver (that’s approximately 23,000) to make a donation of £1 in order to raise as much money as possible for all the cab trade charities.
For those of you that are unfamiliar with the trade’s charities, the magnificent seven are:
- London Taxi Drivers’ Charity for Children
- Magical Taxi Tour
- East London Cabbies Outing
- Taxi Charity for Military Veterans
- The Albany Taxi Charity (The Licenced Taxi Drivers Fund For Children With Special Needs)
- The Taxi Warm Clothing Charity
- The Cabmen’s Shelter Fund
The money raised from Kate’s ‘joint cab trade charities Christmas collection’ will be split equally between all the registered trade charities.
So, please help us get behind Kate and this fantastic cause. Donations can be made at any of the 12 the Green Huts in London. Plus, Katie will be at Kings Cross and Euston station Taxi ranks on Friday 13th December collecting in person.
A great cause in aid of some very worthy causes. It is also a great way of celebrating the heritage associated with London’s cab trade.
We’d like to wish all London’s drivers a very Merry Christmas and in the words of Kate herself “carry on being the best!”.
You can follow Kate and her appeal on the Russel Square Cab Hut Facebook page
Where are the Cabmen Shelters based?
The 12 remaining cab shelters can be found at:
- Embankment Place, WC2 – near to the Playhouse Theatre
- Grosvenor Gardens, SW1 – west side of the north gardens
- Hanover Square, W1 – north side of the central gardens
- Kensington Park Road, W11 – outside numbers 8-10
- Kensington Road, W8 – close to the junction of Queen’s Gate SW7
- Pont Street, SW1 – close to the junction of Sloane Street
- Russell Square, WC1 – western corner (relocated from Leicester Square)
- St. George’s Square, Pimlico, SW1 – on the north side
- Temple Place, WC2 – near junction with Surrey Street
- Thurloe Place, SW7 – in the middle of the road opposite the Victoria and Albert Museum
- Warwick Avenue, W9 – centre of the road, by Warwick Avenue tube station
- Wellington Place, NW8 – near to Lord’s Cricket Ground
Don’t forget, if you are in town and would like a tour of London’s spectacular Christmas lights, we’d love to take you on a guided tour. Indulge in some Christmas treats and traditions along the way and admire the wintery wonderland set out before you. After all, it is the most wonderful time of the year! Just give us a call, and we’ll organise the rest.