chapter  6
15 Pages

LONDON GRANDEUR: THE PORCHESTER BALL

Phaedra Kelly
WithThe Porchester Ball

The Porchester Hall is a massive Victorian structure which dominates a quarter of the lower side of the aptly named Queensway, in the heart of Bayswater’s embassy land-an area more famous for the violent siege that lead to the sniper killing of woman police constable Yvonne Fletcher. A few yards down the road is the embassy where hostages were dramatically freed by the SAS using stun grenades as they dangled from the roof on ropes, to the balcony below. Around the corner lives my friend Odette Tchernine, a frail elderly spinster of whom you would never guess that she was a legend of the Fleet Street newspaper world, poetess and author, fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and pioneer hunter of the Yeti and sasquatch.