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Leadenhall Market
Photograph: Leadenhall Market

Leadenhall Market will be filled with birdsong this winter

Ooh wee, chirpy chirpy cheep cheep


Do the birds in your area seem a little noisier lately? You’re not the only one who’s noticed. Last October, a survey by the Natural History Museum reported that 73 percent of people had experienced louder bird song during lockdown. There’s a lot of positives to all the chirping, as birdsong is known to have restorative effects that can help reduce a person’s anxiety levels and refocus their attention. It’s one of the reasons why, at this time of intense universal stress, Leadenhall Market has decided to fill its Victorian arcade with soothing bird chorus and ‘mood boosting installations’ for a new installation. 

It’s all part of a January ‘wellness month’ drive that will make use of the empty market units. Londoners are invited to explore the light installations via a special walking route while out on their daily exercise. Birdsong will be played in the quiet alleys of the market every Monday to Friday, from 10am-4pm, starting Monday January 11.

Leadenhall Market has been a part of the city since the fourteenth century, in what was once the centre of Roman London. It’s weathered fires, plagues, wars, and a stint as the filming location for Diagon Alley in the Harry Potter movies. In normal circumstances, it would be overrun with office workers and tourists getting boutique lunches from the Parisian deli. Seeing it essentially empty, echoing with chirps and warbles, could be a peaceful experience, even if it has the potential to feel like a scene out of ‘Birdbox’.

If you happen to live within manageable walking distance from the Square Mile, you can take yourself on this stress-relieving detour. If – like the vast majority of Londoners – you do not, here’s a link where you can listen to an hour’s worth of soothing nightingale song.

Find out more about Leadenhall Market here

In other news, ZSL London Zoo has just done its annual animal stocktake, and there are pictures

Need a distraction? Here are 14 simple London pleasures we’re looking forward to doing again.


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