London's hidden historic treasures

The landmarks and attractions with an intriguing past

© Adam Cresswell

Our last sewer lamp

On Carting Lane, a gloomy side street off the Strand between the Savoy and the ShellMex building, you can find London’s last remaining sewer-powered gas lamp, still giving out its queasy yellow glow around the clock, thanks to a hollow iron column that allows sewer vapours to travel to its flame. Lit by the capital’s slurry since the 1880s, this Patent Sewer Ventilating Lamp represents Victorian ingenuity at its best.