London Then And Now In Photos

In 2010, journalist Claire Cohen wrote a newspaper article comparing old photos of London with the same locations then. The old photos had been discovered in the archives of English Heritage, and she asked photographer David Crump to take images of the identical places to compare them.

Earlham Street, 1903. At the time, the Seven Dials district was considered to be a terrible lawless slum.

Earlham Street, 2010. Now part of the trendy Covent Garden area, the 1903 pub has become a designer clothes shop.

Borough High Street, 1903. Just south of London Bridge, it was in one of the poorest districts of London.

Borough High Street, 2012. The same area, with the old buildings replaced by a horrible office block.

Bush House, Aldwych, 1932. Looking quite elegant.

Bush House in 2010, the same area overcrowded with offices.

Tower Bridge under construction, 1887.

Tower Bridge in 2010.

The Pool of London in 1914, busy with commercial shipping and warehouses.

The same view in 2010, with only pleasure craft on The Thames.

Oxford Circus, 1910.

Oxford Circus 100 years later.

Regent Street at the junction with Piccadilly Circus, 1910.

The same corner, 100 years later.

43 thoughts on “London Then And Now In Photos

    1. It seems it was a bit of both, Stevie. A coffee shop and working man’s hostel.

      ‘Horse drawn vehicles, barrows and shop fronts, 309-317 Borough High Street, London, 1904. Men and boys wait with barrows and horse-drawn carts. Behind are W Brooks & Co Chocolatiers, Joel & Penman Warehouse and J Shuttleworth’s Coffee Shop and working man’s hostel where hot drinks are sold for a penny.’

      That is from an article accompanying another version of the photo.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Geoff. I suspect the ‘Now’ photos were taken on a mobile phone. The older photos have the quality derived from large negatives and long exposures.
      Best wishes, Pete.


    1. Thanks, David. 1897 was a typo, and I have corrected it to 1887. The bridge builders began construction in 1886, and it was opened in 1894. But it is not as old as many people think.
      Glad you enjoyed the photos.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Like you, I prefer the old look. I wonder will people in the future look back to our times with nostalgia. It’s a little hard to imagine. A school project back in 1960 was to make costumes that we imagined would exist in 2000. It seemed so remote and now it’s long past.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Back in 1960, I imagined that we would drive flying cars and take holidays on The Moon by the year 2000. But I am still driving a very conventional car, and holidaying on the east coast in England. 🙂
      Best wishes, Pete.


  2. I love ‘before and after’ photos like this, Pete. I think it’s a shame that so much of the lovely old architecture has been swept away; mainly the commercial premises [and all the advertising hoardings are awful, IMHO], but I agree that we are well rid of all the old slums. Cheers, Jon.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Borough High Street lost most (if not all of) of its character though. And the people born in Earlham Street during the 1970s couldn’t afford to buy a home there so had to move to the suburbs. Swings and roundabouts, I reckon.
      Best wishes, Pete.

      Liked by 1 person

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