A LITTLE FOREST of chimney pots clusters above the brick houses as you look out of the train window near Waterloo East. They look like a 3D printout of the imagination of Gustave Doré. Like most things regarded as typical, this block of pre-Victorian housing around Roupell Street is a rare survival.
On a dark night towards closing time last week, I walked past the end of Roupell Street up Hatfields, an even odder street in its way. It runs north to the Thames near the Oxo Tower, and used to follow an open sewer bordering the manor of Paris Gardens, where an embankment kept out floods, except when the tide was too high, which was quite often.