There are many so things that us Londoners can rightly feel proud of. Our outstanding museums and galleries, our stunning parks, the incredible diversity of our architecture. Right at the top of the list, however, must surely be our incredible history and traditions.
London is nearly 2000 years old. Its history is full of seismic changes – from the early Roman settlement, to the Anglo Saxon kingdom, and from the ancient seat of kings, to the birthplace and home of our modern parliamentary democracy.
Throughout its history, London has played host to a dazzling series of firsts. From the world’s oldest underground railway, to the invention of penicillin, and from the first cash machine, to the world’s first hand held computer, London has continually been at the centre of industry and innovation.
London History Day gives us a chance to appreciate the city’s incredible history. Designed as a day of reflection as well as activity, the event gives Londoners an opportunity to celebrate our proud heritage and share our love for our city.
This year’s event has been timed to coincide with the date of the opening of Big Ben in 1859. The old clock famous bongs were first heard in this year and the clock town has been an icon of the city ever since.
This year, due to the Coronavirus Crisis, London History Day will be celebrated online. However, there is still quite a bit to do. From sharing your thoughts about the city on social media, to making and uploading your own maps – there really is something for everyone on London History Day.
A key theme of this year’s event is resilience. The ability to cast off disappointments and keep going is a vital characteristic of those who make history and the organisers of London History Day are keen to hear ordinary Londoner’s thoughts on the subject on the big day.
How has London demonstrated resilience throughout its history? Examples need not come from the past, it could just as easily be something that happened yesterday or in the recent past.
Share you examples of London’s resilience using the hashtag #londonHistoryDay.
Here is a list of other ways to get involved with London History Day:
- Download the Mayor of London’s Schools at Home pack. It’s full of great activities for kids.
- Browse the London History Day archives. The archives contain an array of items from London’s museums, galleries and archives which tell the story of London’s strength and resilience.
- If you are feeling especially adventurous, why not have a go at building your favourite London landmarks out of paper and cardboard? Remember to share them on social media afterwards.
- Explore the history of London with an impressive selection of online maps. You have the option of adding your own map too.
London History Day is a fantastic opportunity for all of us in London to celebrate our love of our fabulous capital city. Don’t miss it!
London History Day takes place on Sunday 31 May 2021. You can find out more about the event here.
For information on other ways to access London culture during the lockdown, please click here.