Down by the Thames, treasure awaits the hunter

Blackfriars bridge map-reader by the bridge by Alex Hylands-White

WHO DOESN’T likes a treasure hunt? This romantic term has an aura of pirates, it’s fun to race around with strangers to seek clues and at the end you might get a reward.

City Hunt Blackfriars meets all those criteria, which is why Loving Dalston is writing about it even if the locale is just outside the site’s Hackney-and-environs reportorial catchment.

Around Blackfriars Road will be answers to 35 clues. And the prizes? The promoters describe them as “a range of experiences including a family outing up the Shard, a ride on the London Eye, a charm bracelet from local jewellery designers JeDeCo or a £100 meal voucher at the Ring pub.

The City Hunt idea stems from Southwark council, with the help of Bermondsey arts outfit 47/49, as part of a programme that includes stories of life around Blackfriars Road, or the east end (sounds better) end of Fleet Street, as old hacks might know it.

Treasure hunters can smartphone their way to or pick up a free printed map from one of two start points during the week of the hunt next month, September 2014.

Local businesses will be encouraged to form teams and compete with one another during a lunch hour. Contestants will be ranked on speed and accuracy. High scorers will be put into a prize draw.

Southwark culture councillor Dora Dixon-Fyle says: “What a great way to celebrate the culture and history of the Blackfriars area, City Hunt will be the perfect…” [That’s quite enough press release. Anyone still awake?]

Readers may not be surprised to hear that the area is undergoing “major redevelopment”.

Thames: W of Blackfriars bridge London 230714 ©
A swimmer near Blackfriars. A clue? Who knows?

Hamish Scott 060814

* City Hunt Blackfriars, no entry fee, Mon 15 Sep 2014-Sun 21 Sep 2014. Start points: ASC Studios, 128 Blackfriars Road SE1 8EQ; Blackfriars station, south side of River Thames. 

* Start points staffed Mon-Fri noon-2pm; Sat and Sun 10am-4pm. All clues in wheelchair-accessible spots. 

* The picture above of a map-reader by the bridge is by Alex Hylands-White.

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.

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