From river launderettes and crucifix carpenters to streetlamp lighters and shoe shiners – in just the last few decades, countless jobs that had existed for centuries have disappeared. Let’s take a glimpse of these lost trades and professions, because there’s a lot we can learn from what is now obsolete.
Madrid in August is a giant ghost town, except for the fraction of establishments that remain open for business (even the vending machines have closed for the holidays). But August is also the most curious month, with roadworks suddenly exposing a proliferation of ‘rabbit holes’ that lead to a forgotten era.
I’ve been working on revealing these restricted rooms for a little while now – negotiating access to locked spaces and requesting permission to take photos you won’t find anywhere else on the internet. And it’s all been worth it, because we finally get to see inside the most restricted corners of one of Madrid’s most emblematic buildings. But first, there are rules…
Let me ask you something, and think carefully: where is the nearest drinking fountain to you right now? Dig deep into the corners of your mind. Found it?
Walking around the streets of Madrid never gets old. This time, we’ve uncovered everything from ancient books and up-cycled monastery doorways to secret colour-coded facades and the largest shanty town in Europe. Enjoy!
Spain is different. Its history is all around us, yet it’s often difficult to unravel because of the post-dictatorial ‘pact of silence’ that still seems to haunt modern Spanish society. But, we’re doing our best to uncover Madrid’s lost stories, with six more curious photo-assisted tales awaiting you in just one click…
In 1919 – the year of its inauguration – Madrid’s metro consisted of just one line with eight charming little stations. Almost 100 years later, this vast subterranean labyrinth is the seventh-longest underground system in the world and hosts around two million journeys every day.
Many know that Ernest Hemingway was here during Spanish Civil War, but did you know where he was staying, or who he was having an affair with? Also in this volume of lost stories, we uncover floods, Madrid’s lost tramlines and the blessed metro line.
An entire village was built to exhibit these unfamiliar people in their ‘natural habitat’, with thousands of curious spectators paying for a glimpse into their exotic world. Welcome to the darkest corner of Retiro Park: Madrid’s erstwhile ‘human zoo’.
In this volume of Madrid’s lost stories, we reveal the vengeful reasons behind the demolition of a beautiful Madrid building, a lost metro entrance, evidence of Madrid’s questionable city centre zoo, and a few more surprises.