My first name is Poul because I am half Danish. My mother, Karin Helga Svane-Larsen, was born and brought up in Copenhagen. She met my father there in 1945 after the second World War had ended and he was demobbed in Copenhagen. After an abortive attempt at living in in Copenhagen they came to Cambridge where my grandparents were living. During World War II, Copenhagen was occupied by German troops along with the rest of the country from 9 April 1940 until 4 May 1945. In August 1943, when the government's collaboration with the occupation forces collapsed, several ships were sunk in Copenhagen Harbour by the Royal Danish Navy to prevent them being used by the Germans. My mother's youngest brother, my uncle Poul, was in the Danish resistance but was caught and executed by the Gestapo. He was 18 years old.
Denmark is a well kept secret and Copenhagen the jewell in the crown.
Copenhagen Town Hall where my parents were married in 1946:
Copenhagen is the capital and largest city of Denmark, with a metropolitan population of 1,894,521. It’s situated on the islands of Zealand and Amager.
First documented in the 11th century, Copenhagen became the capital of Denmark in the beginning of the 15th century and during the 17th century under the reign of Christian IV it became an important regional centre.
With the completion of the transnational Oresund Bridge in 2000, Copenhagen has become the centre of the increasingly integrating Oresund Region. Within this region, Copenhagen and the Swedish city of Malmö are in the process of growing into one common metropolitan area. With around 2.7 million inhabitants within a 50 km radius, Copenhagen is one of the most densely populated areas in Northern Europe. Copenhagen is the most visited city of the Nordic countries with 1.3 million international tourists in 2007. Strøget (literally "the sweep") is a car-free zone in Copenhagen. This popular tourist attraction in the centre of town is the longest pedestrian shopping area in Europe.
Copenhagen has repeatedly been recognized as one of the cities with the best quality of life. It is also considered one of the world's most environmentally friendly cities. The water in the inner harbour is so clean that it can be swum in, and 36% of all citizens commute to work by bicycle, every day cycling a total of 1.1 million km. Since the turn of the millennium, Copenhagen has seen a strong urban and cultural development and has been described as a boom town. This is partly due to massive investments in cultural facilities as well as infrastructure and a new wave of successful designers, chefs and architects.
A modern development in Copenhagen:
Copenhagen is the ongoing venue for the climate change conference:
An old square in the center of Copenhagen:
An outdoor café in the city centre:
There are many waterways in the city centre:
The famous Tivoli Gardens: