UCL Centre for Digital Humanities


Survey of London: Histories of Whitechapel

02 November 2016, 5:30 pm–6:30 pm

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UCL Centre for Digital Humanities
Gower Street
United Kingdom

Peter Guillery, Senior Research Associate at the UCL Bartlett School of Architecture and Martin Zaltz Austwick, Lecturer at the UCL Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis will give a presentation on The Survey of London's 'Histories of Whitechapel' website, which was launched in September. It is the lynchpin of an in-depth participative study of Whitechapel, a district currently in the throes of intense change. Formed thanks to a major grant from the Arts and Humanities Research Council and in collaboration with UCL's Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, the project aims to break new methodological ground in the field of urban history.

The Survey of London has been attached to the Bartlett School of Architecture since 2013, but it has a long history stemming from its foundation in the 1890s. Over recent decades the Survey gained renown for combining rigorous scholarship with first-rate illustrations in an approach to urban history that presents socio-economic contexts as crucial determinants of architecture.

The 'Histories of Whitechapel' interactive website is a new departure. It provides for public co-production of research, tapping into the insights of local communities and others to document experiences and understandings of all manner of buildings and places from an innovatively devised map-based platform. Whitechapel's complex histories and circumstances make it an excellent testing ground for the formation of such a public history. The initiative is being supported by Tower Hamlets Local History Library & Archives, Historic England, the East London Mosque, Whitechapel Gallery and Wilton's Music Hall.


Mr Peter Guillery is an architectural historian and editor for the Survey of London, the topographical series founded in 1894 that is now part of The Bartlett School of Architecture at UCL. 

Dr Martin Zaltz Austwick lectures in advanced spatial analysis and visualization. He holds an undergraduate Physics degree and a PhD in nanotechnology and quantum computing, and worked as a clinical medical physics researcher from 2006-2010, a varied career which has led to his interest in the adaptation of ideas from the physical sciences to social sciences.

All welcome and there will be drinks and discussion after the talk. Please note that registration is required.