The silent film star Charlie Chaplin was born and raised in the Elephant. On this walk with local writer-performer John Constable, we explore Chaplin’s childhood haunts around the area, including the church where his parents were married, the sites of the ‘South London Palace’, and other celebrated music halls from the time when this area was a hotbed of working-class culture. Along the way, we discover some memorable larger-than-life characters, and are treated to John’s own performance of the music-hall classic ‘Knocked ‘Em In The Old Kent Road’.

Charlie Chaplin's Elephant and Castle – a walk with John Constable

John Constable has lived in The Borough for more than 30 years. His plays include The Southwark Mysteries, performed in Shakespeare’s Globe and Southwark Cathedral, and the dramatization of Mervyn Peake’s Gormenghast trilogy staged at the Lyric Hammersmith and on several world tours. He gives talks and workshops and has conducted many guided walks on local history and culture. £5 contribution per person. The walk will last 90 minutes to 2 hours. Meet at Castle Square, SE17 1LB, Elephant and Castle 13.30 2 September 2017.


I was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. He was a bookseller before shifting to children’s publishing where he worked at a literary development company.

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