Page 70. " The wall of Millbank Prison came into view "

Millbank Prison opened in 1816 and was closed in 1890. During its relatively brief life it was used primarily as a place where prisoners condemned to be transported to Australia would be held temporarily before their expulsion.

The prison was built on the bank of the river Thames in Pimlico, on the site now occupied by Tate Britain. It was built according to the principles of the Enlightenment thinker and proponent of utilitarianism, Jeremy Bentham, who posited the idea of a Panopticon: a prison designed so that all prisoners are visible from a central watchtower. As well as influencing prison design for many years, this idea had a profound influence on the twentieth century philosopher Michel Foucault, whose 1975 book Discipline and Punish discusses its wider implications.

Millbank Prison also appears in Henry James's 1886 novel  The Princess Casamassima and, more recently, Sarah Waters' Affinity (1999).




Page 75. " They were on the edge of Leicester Square "


 Leicester Square in London is named after Robert Sidney, 2nd Earl of Leicester, who purchased the land and built a house there in 1630. The area was developed further towards the end of the seventeenth century and became extremely fashionable for a while; but by the end of the eighteenth century this glamour had faded, and it had become a venue for popular entertainment and the site of numerous hotels. It now boasts several cinemas and is known as the venue for most of the UK's film premieres.