London history and walks

Explore the history of London - Online Courses

From its Bronze Age beginnings to capital status, London has witnessed growth and destruction throughout its long history. Join us for lively classroom discussions and 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:


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

Some of our courses take place in the classroom — learn more about Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit.

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  1. Stuart London 2: 1660-1714
    Last Few Places
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Explore London's history between the restoration of 1660 and the end of the Stuart dynasty in 1714. How did these decades impact on London and its people? Through war, plague and fire, London survived and grew to a new architectural elegance.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £199.00 Senior fee £159.00 Concession £88.00
  2. Transports of delight: London's railway stations
    Course start date:  Tue 11 Jan 2022 (and 1 other date)

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and Onsite) (other locations are available)

    London's stations see over 1 billion journeys annually, but the buildings themselves are often ignored. Explore a different station and environs each week, discovering the architecture, history, stories and future of these lifelines of London. The course starts with an initial zoom lecture followed by a series of walking tours.



    This course will be delivered online and onsite. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £74.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  3. The City of London: the Square Mile
    Course start date:  Wed 12 Jan 2022 (and 3 other dates)

    Location on this date:  OS - Off Site

    Explore the City of London after the Great Fire of 1666. Discover how London recovered from one of the great disasters and became a centre of commerce and the heart of a great empire. We follow in the steps of some of its best known characters like Doctor Johnson and Samuel Pepys and some lesser known including William Lilley and Thomas Chatterton. The course follows on from the HLW06 The City of London: the square mile, but new students are welcome. The first meeting place is Monument station, Fish Street Hill exit.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £127.00 Concession £70.00
  4. City of words: further adventures
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 13 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    London luxuriates in literary references. We follow the footsteps of the authors, poets and playwrights, and some of their creations, as we walk a brand new neighbourhood each week, exploring the literary connections.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £44.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  5. Painting the town: the art of London
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 13 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    'Earth has not anything to show more fair.’ Examining London & Londoners through the eyes of its artists. From its high days and holidays to its seedier side, this course examines the artistic depictions of the city & its inhabitants.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £49.00 Senior fee £39.00 Concession £22.00
  6. Archaeology of London
    Evening, ONLINE
    Course start date:  Wed 19 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the archaeology and history of London through its cultural monuments, topography and material remains to more fully appreciate the rich archaeological evidence of the capital.



    Tutor: Jill Hummerstone. Tutor :Jill Hummerstone.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £199.00 Senior fee £199.00 Concession £88.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  7. Plagues of London: 1348-1665
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 21 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the impact of plague on London during the years 1348-1665. By the seventeenth century we can read eye-



    witness accounts but medicine was no nearer to a cure.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £219.00 Senior fee £175.00 Concession £96.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100
  8. London's quartiers
    Last Few Places
    Course start date:  Fri 21 Jan 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and Onsite)

    Through 1 lecture and 7 guided walks, explore some of London’s quartiers – Soho, Mayfair, Covent Garden, Spitalfields, Clerkenwell, St James and Bloomsbury and understand how their very distinct characters were formed. The first session will be delivered via Zoom and other sessions will be guided walks.



    London guide: Sue Jackson.



    This course will be delivered online and onsite. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £159.00 Senior fee £127.00 Concession £70.00
    Rating:
    90% of 100
  9. Crimes and misdemeanors: crimes that rocked the capital
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 10 Feb 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Royal scandals, fraud, hoaxes & crime, this city has always had a darker underbelly. This course looks at some of the events that shocked and shaped the city.



    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 £55.00 Concession £30.00
  10. Georgian London 1714-1815
    Course start date:  Tue 19 Apr 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Explore Georgian London's contradictions: its new and fashionable developments reflect ideas of rationality and order, but everyday life was beset by filth and dangers. How do London’s buildings illustrate these tensions?



    Also as the capital of a global superpower, how were the lives of Londoners affected by political, economic and social revolution, and protracted warfare in a period spanning the American Revolution and the defeat of Napoleon?



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £199.00 Senior fee £159.00 Concession £88.00
  11. Stories of London
    Course start date:  Wed 4 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Mixed Mode (Online and Onsite)

    Explore London’s rich history in a series of guided walks. Each week we examine a different neighbourhood & era from the capital’s past. We look at its people, both rich and poor, & the events that shaped the city.



    Initial lecture via Zoom followed by 6 guided walks.



    This course will be delivered online and onsite. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £149.00 Senior fee £119.00 Concession £66.00
    Rating:
    94% of 100
  12. City of words- the 'trequel'
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Thu 5 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    London luxuriates in literary references. This course explores a new neighbourhood each week, looking at some of those authors, poets & playwrights, & their creations, who have celebrated & immortalised our city.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £99.00 Senior fee £79.00 Concession £44.00
  13. Hogarth's London: 1697-1764
    ONLINE
    Course start date:  Fri 6 May 2022

    Location on this date:  Online

    Explore the high and low life of 18th-century London through the drawings and paintings of William Hogarth. There will be a visit to either the Sir John Soame Museum or the National Gallery.



    This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
    Full fee £239.00 Senior fee £191.00 Concession £105.00
  14. The old Jewish East End
    Course start date:  Mon 9 May 2022

    Location on this date:  OS - Off Site

    Today the London Jewish community is associated with areas to the North West and North East of London but this tour explores the area where Jewish people settled from 1656 onwards. Take a guided walk through the streets of the East End to reveal old synagogue buildings, a soup kitchen , markets, shops, businesses and homes associated with London’s Jewish community. We’ll hear about some of the personalities associated with the area from philanthropists to performers.



    Meets outside Liverpool Street Station , Liverpool Street Exit outside the upper concourse of the stationby the Kindertransport Memorial next to McDonalds.
    Full fee £19.00 Senior fee £15.00 Concession £8.00
  15. Unreal city: the history of London through literature from 1800 to today
    Course start date:  Tue 10 May 2022

    Location on this date:  KS - Keeley Street

    Fiction writers are often the first to identify and analyse a social phenomenon. We will examine two centuries of London history through the eyes of novelists and poets, from William Blake to Zadie Smith.



    This course takes place in the classroom, please follow this link to find out what we are doing to keep you safe: Staying COVID-19 secure at City Lit
    Full fee £89.00 Senior fee £71.00 Concession £39.00
    Rating:
    100% of 100

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