London history & walks

London History Walks & Courses

From its Bronze Age beginnings to capital status, London has witnessed growth and destruction throughout its long history. Join us for lively classroom and online discussions as well as our popular walks around the city and discover who and what has left their mark on the city.

Watch City Lit tutor Eleanor Jackson explore some of London's secret spaces:


Some of our courses are delivered online. For more information about our live online courses, please see our guide to online learning.

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  1. Medieval London 1000-1350: the archaeology of a capital city
    Last Few Places, Weekend
    Course start date:  Sat 9 Jul 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Stuart Brookes
    This one day course looks at a period that fundamentally shaped London as a city, from the laying out of a new town within the old Roman city wall to the rapid growth of the 11—13th centuries.



    Includes an introductory lecture, museum visit and guided walk.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £55.00 Concession £35.00
  2. The Wyldes of Hampstead: Exploring Hampstead’s Northern Slopes
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 10 Jul 2022

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Marilyn Greene
    Discover the rural north side of Hampstead by walking across the Heath Extension to the hamlet of Northend learning about its famous residents, its hostelry and the 17th- century Wyldes farmhouse. We return via the enchanting Hill Garden and Golders Hill Park.



    Meet on the green behind the newsagent at Golders Green Station. Circular walk starts and ends outside the main entrance to Golders Green and involves walking across parts of the Heath..
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £15.00 Concession £10.00
  3. In the footsteps of London's rebels
    Course start date:  Tue 13 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and In Person)

    Tutors:  David Rosenberg
    Explore London's places of protest and discover the stories of radicals, agitators and campaigners who fought for social justice, equal rights and better lives for all from the 1830s to the 1930s.



    The first and the last sessions will be delivered via zoom. The other 8 sessions are guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and in person. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £249.00 Senior fee £199.00 Concession £125.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  4. London at war
    Course start date:  Tue 13 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and In Person)

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson




    London has been shaped by war, conflict and unrest. It's buildings, monuments and even street names reflect our embattled past. These walks examine London's wartime legacy from mediaeval fortifications to the War on Terror.



    London guide: Eleanor Jackson



    First lecture will be delivered via zoom followed by 8 guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and in person. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £151.00 Concession £95.00
    Rating:
    97% of 100
  5. Lampooning London: Satire in the City
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 14 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    Londoners have never taken themselves too seriously & delight in making fun of themselves. This course examines the cultural history of satire in the city from the 18thC to today, from Dr Johnson to Steve Bell & beyond.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
  6. City of words: London's literary landscape
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and In Person)

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    London has been muse, magnet and mecca to writers for 400 years, home to Shakespeare's successes, Dickens' dramas and Wilde's witticisms. After an introductory lecture we walk a different London neighbourhood each week exploring its literary connections. Initial lecture is on zoom . This is followed by 8 guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and in person. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £85.00
    Rating:
    98% of 100
  7. The men who built London
    Course start date:  Thu 15 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and In Person)

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    London was shaped by its architects, engineers, bricklayers, navies etc. Our lecture and walks examine London’s buildings and the men (and women) who worked throughout history to create this eclectic and wonderful city.



    London guide: Eleanor Jackson



    First lecture will be delivered via zoom followed by 8 guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and in person. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £189.00 Senior fee £151.00 Concession £95.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  8. A history of London: 1815-1845
    Course start date:  Tue 20 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Mike Berlin
    How did London and Londoners experience the period of repression and reform that followed the long French wars? How did London develop and what was the impact of the railways?
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £110.00
  9. Roman London
    Course start date:  Fri 23 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Vanessa King
    Using archaeological and written evidence, we will explore what life was like in London during the Roman occupation between c.50 and 450 CE.
    Full fee £259.00 Senior fee £207.00 Concession £130.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  10. The many sides of London's West End
    Course start date:  Tue 27 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    This is a new series of guided walks which will explore the West End (Soho, Covent Garden, St Giles etc) through history and up to the 1960s and the eras legacy for contemporary West End.







    Fuller details of the course and London guide will be posted by the end of June.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £111.00 Concession £70.00
  11. Introduction to Charles Booths’ London
    Course start date:  Tue 27 Sep 2022

    Location on this date:  Keeley Street

    Tutors:  Sarah Wise
    During this six-week course, we will explore aspects of Charles Booth’s landmark survey ‘Life & Labour of the People in London’, published in 17 volumes between 1889 and 1903.
    Full fee £139.00 Senior fee £111.00 Concession £70.00
    Rating:
    97% of 100
  12. The Heights of Dickens
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 2 Oct 2022

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Marilyn Greene
    Follow in Charles Dickens’ footsteps in a walk from Highgate to the hamlet of North End on the border with Hampstead and Hampstead Garden Suburb. We will follow some of Bill Sikes escape route after murdering Nancy in Oliver Twist, see houses that Dickens stayed in; learn about his friendship with philanthropist Baroness Angela Burdett-Coutts; peep into Highgate Cemetery and follow the Gordon rioters in Barnaby Rudge towards Lord Mansfield’s country estate at Kenwood (Caen Wood).



    We will pass the Spaniard’s Inn, featured in the Pickwick Papers and continue across Hampstead Heath towards North End and Hendon. We finish in North End where we view the 17th century farmhouse that Dickens lodged in.



    Please note this walk is over 3 hours long and involved some steep ups and downs.



    starts Highgate on Green opposite the Woodman pub (414 Archway Rd, London N6 5UA), ends Bull and Bush pub, North End Road, NW3 ( between Golders Green and Hampstead.
    Full fee £39.00 Senior fee £31.00 Concession £25.00
  13. The City of London: the Square Mile
    Course start date:  Wed 5 Oct 2022 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Paul Sinclair
    Explore the City’s development from Roman and medieval times through to the Tudors and Stuarts.



    This course will comprise of 10 walks starting with Roman London. First meeting place at Monument station on the Monument side.
    Full fee £209.00 Senior fee £167.00 Concession £105.00
  14. The Art of War: London’s brushes with conflict
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 12 Oct 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Tutors:  Eleanor Jackson
    London’s superb collections of visual representations of War show how conflict affects people, politics & places. Hostilities have destroyed, but also inspired, influenced & impacted the attitudes of Londoners & artists.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £69.00 Senior fee £69.00 Concession £35.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  15. Pioneers of Modern Art
    Weekend
    Course start date:  Sun 16 Oct 2022

    Location on this date:  Off Site

    Tutors:  Marilyn Greene
    In the early 20th century Hampstead was home to some of the era's most pioneering artists. We will walk in the footsteps of the Slade School artists who socialised in Downshire Hill and the Modernists working in Belsize Park. Starts Hampstead Tube station, Ends Isokon Gallery, Lawn Road, near Belsize Park. The tutor can take people back to the Station. There is also an option to spend time in the Isokon gallery afterwards.
    Full fee £29.00 Senior fee £23.00 Concession £19.00

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