The City of London’s vast archive of photographs and drawings just got a lot more accessible. The revamped Collage website brings together a quarter of a million images into an easily searchable database.
The images date back to 1450, but also include photos from the past few decades.
One excellent feature is an interactive map showing the photograph locations. This makes browsing particularly fun. We readily found old photographs and drawings of the area around our office, for example.
Although maintained by the City of London, the site covers all 32 boroughs, right out to the borders of Greater London and occasionally beyond.
You can also browse by category, such as Royal London or famous buildings. There’s even a category for the Great Fire, in commemoration of the 350th anniversary. We chanced across this unrealised plan for rebuilding the City by Christopher Wren — a bird’s eye view of the scheme that we’d not encountered before.
The Collage website collects together images from the Guildhall Art Gallery and London Metropolitan Archives. It can be freely browsed online — just make sure you don’t have anything else you want to get done today.
View the map here!