About me

Taken from the viewing platform of Tate Modern.

Hello! I’m Katreya Somerville. I’m a London Blue Badge Tourist Guide.* 

What would you like to see in London?

Shall we spend a few hours seeing the highlights (Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, Houses of Parliament, Horseguards, Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Tower of London)?

Or perhaps you’d like a highlights tour of one of London’s world-class museums and art galleries. British Museum? National Gallery?

You may be interested in my specialist and off-beat walking tours?

I also offer day tours outside London such as Oxford, Windsor Castle, Stonehenge. We might travel by coach, chauffeur-driven car or, in some cases train.

Are you organising a group trip to London? Are they students? Retired travellers? Completely mixed? No group of visitors is the same. I will tailor your tour to suit your requirements.

What’s a Blue Badge?

*What’s a Blue Badge?  

This is the highest tour guiding qualification in the land. We’re a small band of working guides who worked really hard to get this Badge.  Two years’ intensive training and studying where we learnt just about everything to do with London and England. Not just English history but the political system, the legal system, the type of stone that London is built upon, and the gestation time of a sheep. (Answers to the last two if you’re interested: London is built on sand and clay with no natural stone; 147 days).

We studied the most important sites such as Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’s Cathedral, British Museum and the Tower of London in depth. 

We learnt how to guide in a coach, how to conduct walking tours, manage large or small groups, and how to guide standing on our heads. (That last one isn’t strictly true, but it certainly was a demanding training course.)

Where do I come from?

I’m a native Londoner.  I was born here, lived here all my life and am never going to leave.

I’ve been a full time guide since qualifying in 2005.

Before that I had a varied career.  I trained as an English teacher, managed a tour operating company, worked as an aromatherapist, reflexologist, magazine editor and journalist, astrologer, and secretary. I’ve also written a book about how to see London when you’re in a real hurry and every minute counts…here