Blue Plaques

London’s blue plaques

London’s famous blue plaques link the people of the past with the buildings of the present. Now run by English Heritage, the London blue plaques scheme was started in 1866 and is thought to be the oldest of its kind in the world.

Across the capital 1,000 plaques, on buildings humble and grand, honour the notable women and men who have lived or worked in them. Discover some of the people commemorated with blue plaques, or search for a plaque, below.

The English Heritage London blue plaques scheme is generously supported by David Pearl and members of the public.

Find a Plaque

Black and white photograph of Mrs Irene Barclay and Miss Margaret White studying plans for St Richard's House III, 1964
Irene Barclay (left) and Margaret White studying plans for St Richard’s House III, 1964
© Camden Local Studies and Archives Centre

New plaques in 2024

More plaques will be unveiled to individual women in 2024 than in any previous year of the London blue plaques scheme’s history, which dates back over 150 years.

Recipients recognised in 2024 include: Christina Broom, believed to have been Britain’s first female press photographer; Diana Beck, celebrated as the UK’s first female neurosurgeon; jazz singer, Adelaide Hall, one of the first black women to secure a long-term contract at the BBC; and Irene Barclay, the first woman to qualify as a chartered surveyor.

Read about Irene Barclay
Black and white photograph of Oscar Wilde and ‘Bosie’ Douglas
Oscar Wilde and Lord Alfred 'Bosie' Douglas at Oxford in 1893
© Hulton Archive/Stringer/Getty Images

London Pride: LGBTQ+ stories

From Oscar Wilde to Virginia Woolf, explore London’s LGBTQ+ history through the stories associated with the city’s blue plaques.                                                                                                                                                                                                  

Explore London’s LGBTQ+ history

Plaques for women

Only 15 per cent of London’s blue plaques celebrate women. We don't think that’s good enough. Since 2016, when we first launched our ‘plaques for women’ campaign, more than half of the people awarded plaques have been women, but only a third of the public nominations were for women. Nominations are the life blood of the London blue plaques scheme. If you know of a woman who deserves a blue plaque and meets the selection criteria, nominate her now.

Propose a woman for a blue plaque

Blue plaque stories

Behind every plaque is a story. From the creative output of international composers to campaigns for women’s rights, discover the personal stories and historic achievements of London’s notable former residents with our series of in-depth stories.

Discover the stories behind the plaques
A portrait of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, by Michele Gordigiani in 1858
At the age of 15, Elizabeth Barrett Browning suffered the onset of a mystery illness which also affected two of her sisters
© National Portrait Gallery London

Living with disability

We commemorate people from all walks of life, some of whom lived with disability. For some, their disability was a difficulty to be navigated, often in a hostile environment. For others, it changed the course of their lives, and was in some cases central to the achievement for which they're celebrated.

We explore stories of people with both visible and hidden impairments, and consider the impact disability had on their lives.

Read the article

Heroes of Health

Advances in the control, treatment and cure of illness and disease have depended on the work of many talented individuals. The London blue plaques scheme celebrates figures of outstanding achievement in this area. We explore  their significant medical breakthroughs and public health reforms.

Read the article
A painting of Ira Aldridge in the role of Othello on a West End stage.
Ira Aldridge, ‘the Celebrated American Tragedian‘, in the role of Othello
© Dea Picture Library / Getty Images

Celebrating London’s Black History

From musicians to politicians, discover some of the pioneering black figures whose achievements are celebrated with London’s blue plaques.                                                                                                                                                                    

Find out more about London’s Black History

Blue Plaques App

The official blue plaques app is now available to download for free for iPhone and Android. Use the app to follow guided walks around Soho and Kensington, or explore all of the 900 plaques by finding ones nearby and searching for your favourite figures from history.

From Sylvia Pankhurst’s former home in Chelsea to Jimi Hendrix’s flat in Mayfair, let English Heritage’s blue plaques guide you through the streets of London.

Download the free app now from the Apple App Store for iPhone or the Google Play Store for Android.

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