A grid of photographs of the Strand taken by reviewers and uploaded to Trip Advisor. The views include Christmas Lights, grand buildings such as the Royal Courts of Justice and Somerset House, and theatre signs.

With lockdown easing, many Londoners and tourists are beginning to explore the city or return to their places of work. Of course, for some essential workers, the Strand has continued to be a part of daily life. As for me, I’m lucky that my job can be done from home, and I am nervous about…

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Detail of H01915 London Trafalgar Square, 27 Aug 1939, by Anthony Kersting, The Courtauld Institute of Art, CC-BY-NC.

Anthony Frank Kersting was a prolific (and under-celebrated!) photographer of the 20th century. His collection of thousands of photographic prints and negatives, including glass plates, have been held at the Conway Library at the Courtauld Institute of Art since his death in 2008. The collection is being digitised as part of a huge project that…

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Detail of Matt's Pic Diary Peach @ Heaven, London, 31 March 2007, uploaded to Flickr. Shared via Attribution 2.0 Generic (CC BY 2.0).

The brick archways drip, flesh drips. The flicker of glitter. Flashes of red and yellow and blue imprint on the back of my eyes. We drip, drip in neon. Hand-shadows on my face, on my body. Foreign hands on my flesh, familiar hands on my skin. No signal. It’s freedom for a night, freedom from…

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Dimly lit Victorian London street

As we entered a new decade, little did we know that three months down the line our bustling thoroughfare would come to be haunted by the shadows of London’s Victorian past. Transforming into a flaneur-like figure in the dead of the night to combat his insomnia, Charles Dickens documented his traversing of London in the…

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Wych Street looking towards the Strand, c. 1890, from 'Lost London' by Hermione Hobhouse. Shared by @WychStreet, 10 December 2017.

I often scour Instagram for gorgeous, strange, or mysterious looking photographs of the Strand, historical and contemporary. @WychStreet, an account run by Justin Sherin, is an account I return to again and again, as the photographs – and generous evocative captions – instantly transport me into the past. Justin was kind enough to share some…

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Featured Image: A beautiful stained glass windows at Two Temple Place, and the 'Unbound' exbition duty managers Alice and Kimberley.

Like many people, I have been enjoying the virtual offerings of museums and galleries during lockdown. For this post, I’m grateful to Two Temple Place for letting Strandlines share excerpts from their blog ‘Voices from Two Temple Place’. I can’t recommend the blog enough, and applaud the blog’s mission to be an ‘inclusive online platform…

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In the late 19th century, the Strand Magazine propelled Arthur Conan Doyle’s writings to new heights. This meteoric rise brought wider public attention to some of the issues that plagued London in the 1890s. In the Strand Magazine pieces, complex connections between writing by Doyle and the concerns of the Smoke Abatement Society are apparent.…

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Shell Mex House, Public Domain image uploaded by Wikipedia user Mahlum.

‘If one could choose a single location in which the encounter with cultural complexity became routine, it would be that unique gathering of peoples along the Thames.’ So says John Cramsie, author of a book about such encounters in the early modern period, though mostly ones away from London (British Travellers and the Encounter with…

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A black and white photo of a Black Lives Matter banner held up at a protest.

Black Lives Matter. Monday 25th May 2020 marked another instance of police brutality against a member of the Black community in the United States. George Floyd, a Black 46-year-old father, son, and brother, was murdered by white police officer, Derek Chauvin, in broad daylight – a disproportionate reaction to Floyd supposedly passing a counterfeit $20…

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