About the project

This is the blog for The Underground Map website – the history site for London.

The project is adding historical maps of London from every decade between 1800 and 1940, a period when London expanded from a city which did not extend beyond Mayfair, Vauxhall, Bethnal Green or Bermondsey. During the Napoleanic Wars at the beginning of this period, Regent’s Park was still countryside and taking the waters of Kilburn was the height of fashion. Our mapping ends at the dawn of the Second World War with London having expanded to its modern size – the Green Belt legislation put paid to further expansion.

There are two parts to the website – the main mapping website and this, the blog, which features London highlights.

To access the main part of the website, search or use the dropdown immediately below.
Or continue to explore the blog – the latest articles can be found at the bottom of this page.

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Some street name derivations

Abbey Orchard Street, SW1 – after a former orchard here attached to St Peter’s Abbey Abbey Street, SE1 – after Bermondsey Abbey, formerly located here Abchurch Lane, EC4N – after the adjacent St Mary Abchurch Abchurch Yard, EC4 – after the adjacent St Mary Abchurch Aberdeen Place, NW8 – this land was formerly owned by Harrow School; …

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Greenwich

This street guide contains streets from all over the London Borough of Greenwich and they are based on the Borough’s conservation area guides. ASHBURNHAM GROVE The name Ashburnham derives from the Ashburnham family who owned and developed much of the Ashburnham Triangle Conservation Area in the early and mid 19th century. ASHBURNHAM PLACE The Travers …

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Charlton

The area has been settled at least since the early Roman period; a Romano-British fort on Cox’s Mount (now  part of Maryon Park) was excavated in 1913, revealing finds dating from 60 AD through to the 4th century. The name Charlton is of Saxon origin, compounded of ceorl (=churl), referring to a small peasant farmer, …

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Photos of old London

Trams were once ubiquitous in London. The first, a horse tram, was introduced in Victoria in 1860; in 1884, a cable tram was introduced for Highgate Hill; electric vehicles arrived in 1901, and by 1914, London has the largest tram network in Europe. The arrival of the diesel bus soon led to their demise, and …

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