It's hard to set a book in London's Borough Market and not mention something that happened recently. On June 3, 2017, three men in a van ran people over at high speed on London Bridge, then moved to on to Borough Market. Knives were used against innocent strangers. In total, six people were killed.
It's hard to believe anyone would do such things to their fellow humans. And yet, out of all this horrible news, there is some good. Stories of bravery have emerged, of people fighting the attackers off so others could escape: the transit officer, armed only with a baton; the baker who hit an attacker over the head with a crate; the football fan who fought them with his bare hands. Then there's the restaurant and bar staff who ushered people off the street and into their doors, sheltering them from danger.
Those people represent what London is all about: a place with backbone, where good is valued over evil, where people come together when the going gets tough. We love you, London. Stay strong.
The museum in The Deads is based loosely on the very creepy Operating Theatre Museum and Herb Garret, in London. If you should ever find yourself on the south bank of the Thames, do yourself a favour and visit. It’s a fascinating place, whether you’re interested in medical and social history, botany, anatomy, or just enjoy being creeped out by 150-year-old brains floating in jars. By the way, I should really point out that the people who work there are lovely, not at all like Jackie or Penelope, and there certainly don’t seem to be any ghosts (okay, okay, if any place has ghosts, it has to be this one).
Another London locale that plays a big part in The Deads is Borough Market, London’s oldest and biggest food market. Although it’s not on a lot of visitor’s radar, it should be, since it's so very Ye Olde London. If you like food, and eating (really, who doesn’t), you’ll find lots of what you like -- whether it’s home-made sausage on a bun, woks full of curries, artisanal cheeses, european pastries or organic coffee. On second thought, don't go. It's horrible, you'd hate it (I don't want it to be even more busy the next time I'm there).
In and around the London borough of Southwark ('Suth-ark') is where most of The Deads happens. It's a very old part of London, on the South Bank. In addition to being the home of Borough Market and The Old Operating Theatre and Herb Garret, it's also where you'll find Shakespeare's Globe Theatre, The Tate Modern, The Golden Hind Ship Museum, The London Clink Museum, and so, sooooo much more.