DSC 7669 - Little and Large

Little and Large are not your usual comedians – not even your father’s heroes.
They’re not the Sid nor the Eddie we once knew and loved. Come to think of it, neither are they the two Ronnies although you could call them something like Big Ronnie (Barker) and Cute Ronnie (Corbett.)
Little and Large are currently performing in deepest Inner London, just a stone’s throw from a railway station made famous by a bear, and where most of the movies featuring this Peruvian bear were made….
IMG 2396 - Little and Large
Little and Large!
The Little & Large under discussion happens to be a pair of belisha beacons at Warwick Avenue. There’s been a pedestrian crossing with beacons at this point for years however recently Westminster City council decided on a program of improvements, including the installation of what must be Britains’ tallest yellow belisha beacon!
Not only that they’ve kept the small one as if for comparison! ‘See, we can do it big time!’

The crossing at this point has been completed and the council’s workers have moved onto the next – its a program to improve all five zebra crossings sited about the junctions with Warwick Avenue/Clifton Road/Warrington Crescent.
IMG 3864 - Little and Large
The large one now works the small doesnt.
DSC 2765 - Little and Large
Earlier photo showing the small one working, the large one not 🙂
Can’t think why the council wants such huge belishas, unless they’re jealous of the adjacent tube roundel sign and see that as stiff competition!
DSC 7659 - Little and Large
The large belisha is possibly to ensure motorists spotted the crossing long before they reach it, rather than be perhaps distracted by the adjacent tube roundel. Why did they not install spot lights as at some crossings, like nearby Abbey Road? This would have been a better alternative.
DSC 2758 - Little and Large
Now its over to our technical editor……
A London Blog’s technical editor’s note:
At the risk of being seen as a somewhat dubious technical editor (tbh I’m not even the one from Modern Railways) I must assert the notion of a tall yellow belisha beacon is clearly without precedent in this country and it seems the council has got their concept wrong.
According to the regulations a belisha (flashing yellow) must not be more than 3000mm in height.
A white belisha is tall and must not be less than 3800mm nor more than 5000mm. These stay lit all the time and warn traffic of a pedestrian refuge or traffic island. They cannot be used on the pavement side. The yellow example at Warwick Avenue is clearly on the pavement and far more than 3000mm high.
If a tall white belisha is on its own (no flashing yellow beacons present) these particular crossings mean traffic has a right of way instead of pedestrians.
Flashing yellow belishas are all the same basic height. and if there are to be any additional embellishments, small flood lights can be used to illuminate the crossing itself so people can clearly be seen on it. These floodlights can be under the yellow globe or above it.
stonecot - Little and Large
One of several belishas on Stonecot Hill. Tall belishas must be white & used on islands only.
Places in London where tall belishas can be found include several along the A24 between Morden and North Cheam. This road, including Stonecot Hill, has both examples of tall white belishas in use with a couple of proper pedestrian crossings showing both examples of the little and large belishas. Chiswick is another London location with examples of both types of beacon. Although tall belishas should really be grey I have seen photos of these being painted black.
Until 2015 prior to the new cycleway built along the Victoria Embankment, Central London itself had an example of a crossing with a tall white belisha signifying the traffic island and perhaps being the minimum 3800mm allowed.
ve2012 - Little and Large
Google 2012 street view showing the yellow/white belisha beacons by Cleopatra’s Needle.
It seems to me the council’s possibly misinterpreted the regulations and deemed they could install a flashing yellow belisha somewhere around 5000mm in height! I can’t find a precedent that allows this.
Another note (this time from the writer of A London Blog):
The aforementioned technical editor doesn’t even exist. That’s my bad! The technical notes are however as factual as they can possibly be 🙂