The Survey of London, founded in the 1890s, provides essential reading for anyone wishing to find out about the capital’s streets and buildings. It produces detailed architectural and topographical studies which appear as large, sumptuously produced books and in searchable form online.
Each Survey volume or set of volumes covers one parish or borough. Its focus is central London and the inner suburbs, the area administered (pre-1965) by the London County Council. This autumn will see the 50th volume published. Each book discusses an area’s topographical and architectural history, giving a description of its buildings (including many which have been demolished), explaining how they came into being and outlining their significance and historical associations. The text, based to a very large degree on original documentary research, is profusely illustrated with a mixture of archive views and new photography and drawings, including maps and measured plans and elevations.