Readers might also have also spotted my interest in London Under, from Brunel's Thames Tunnel to disused tube stations and canal tunnels to the lost rivers of London.
So hopefully it will be at least partially understandable that high on my list of places to visit in London would be Bazalgette's magnificent sewers.
It was therefore with great excitement that I received an invite from Thames Water for just such a tour.
We started off at the Grade II listed Abbey Mills pumping station, which was once known as the "mosque in the marshes" due to its elegant dome at the top:
We were given an extremely interesting history of how London managed its water supply and, er, corresponding wastage (to put it delicately). There was also an update on the famous Thames Tideway Tunnel aka the Super Sewer, more of which anon, including what will happen to the Bubbler.
The tour then showed us the site's main buildings and their history. There used to be two tall chimneys but they had to be demolished in the Blitz because of concerns that if they were damaged they might fall on the pumping station itself.
Then it was time to get dressed up for the descent into London under and the sewers. The outfit made us all feel a bit like the Ghostbusters - who are you going call? - very comprehensively covered, with not just one but two gloves, which to be honest made operating the camera a bit frustrating.
Anyhow managed to get a few shots with approximately the right settings:
Our guide showed us the Bazalgette original brick work (top photo), looking good after about 150 years and still doing its job to keep the dirty stuff out of the Thames. We also got a lesson in what not to flush down the drain, complete with examples.
More on all of this later, as there was lots of really interesting information provided over the afternoon and I have a stack of photos and videos to, er, wade through.
Many thanks to Thames Water for arranging the tour.