Old Compton Street, Soho, London

Running through the heart of Soho, Old Compton Street is indelibly associated with London’s gay scene, but also brims with late-licence restaurants and music shops selling vinyl rarities.

Soho’s history is, of course, as storied as any part of London – in the 19th century, when Soho’s well-earned reputation for vice was most resolutely held, the most famous shop on Old Compton St was Wombwell’s Menagerie.

George Wombwell, a dwarf who was nearly always drunk, owned a cobbler’s shop on the street but it was his travelling animal show, which went all over Britain, that made him a very wealthy man.

More recently, in 1999, the Admiral Duncan pub, popular with homosexuals, was the site of a nail bomb attack that killed three people. Neo-Nazi David Copeland was tried and convicted.

Old Compton St, W1D
Tube: Tottenham Court Road