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But, of course, his memory isn’t cloudy; distilling into 3,000 words or so the essence of all the fun and frolics, which he likens to “a sort of spring-rash: a three days’ fever, which cools the blood for six months afterwards”, his article is packed with keenly observed details.

“I’m after that sense of being able to feel the different layers of the past - and engage with the ghosts of the 19th-century,” he continues.

“Can we remember it and can we do something that’s as exciting for the 21st century?

He describes the unruly mass migration across London by every mode of transport - “Cabs, hackney-coaches, 'shay’ carts, coal-waggons, stages, omnibuses, sociables, gigs, donkey-chaises”.