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From sheep gut condoms to burning cats – discover the city’s sordid secrets

Posted at 6:15 pm, April 10, 2012 in Technology

Black PlaquesAt the latest count, there were somewhere in the region of 12 billion smartphone apps aimed at guiding folks to fun and wholesome things to do in London. And as much as we like taking a pedalo on the Serpentine and rifling through vintage markets, surely we can’t be alone in occasionally craving something a little… darker. As luck would have it, our macabre fantasies have been addressed. On the surface, new iPhone and iPad app Black Plaques London looks very similar to all those other geo-tagged guides to to the city, the big difference being that tapping on any one of its 300-odd pins reveals a long-since-forgotten yarn that’s either gruesome, miraculous or otherwise what your dad might call ‘a touch fruity’. We were astonished, for example, to discover that an effigy stuffed with cats was once set ablaze just down the road from Time Out Towers, and that a sex shop in Covent Garden peddled a neat line in condoms made from sheep’s intestines. The stories themselves are surprisingly detailed and well-written, with over 75,000 words and 600 images to get through. Not bad at all for £2.99, and if you download before April 10, you’ll get it half price. Great and, indeed, grim stuff. David Clack

Download Black Plaques London from itunes.apple.com.

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