For many students, the attraction of London lies not just in the world-renowned quality of its universities, but also the experience of living in one of the world’s best cities.
But how much do you actually know about London? One of the capital’s most interesting attractions will reveal all in an entertaining and informative way. The Museum of London is located just down the road from Pure City in Barbican, and covers the entire history of the city from pre-Roman times to the present day.
Best of all, like most museums in London it is free to enter, so there really is no excuse not to go.
Find out how London became the city it is today
The museum provides a totally comprehensive history of the city right from its prehistoric origins, beginning as far back as 450,000 BC. Look out for the Shepperton woman, some of the oldest human remains found in London that are thought to be over 5,000 years old.
You can also find out what life was like in Roman London, back when it was called Londinium for around 360 years. The Romans were responsible for many innovations during their time in the city, as it began to emerge as one of the most important locations in the world.
Next the exhibits move into the medieval age and continue into the Tudor period. This is the English history that many people are more familiar with, the stories of Henry VIII, Elizabeth I and other interesting monarchs from this time.
This section of the museum also details some of London’s greatest disasters, such as the Plague and the Great Fire of London, which occurred within a year of one another. The infamous King Charles I and ‘Lord Protector’ Oliver Cromwell also figure here, while you will also begin to get a feel for Shakespearean London.
Moving forward, see how London rebuilt itself after the fire that burned almost a third of the city to the ground, and witness how the city changed as the British Empire moved on apace. Arriving at the 20th century reveals much about the famous wartime London, where two world wars threatened the very fabric of life in the city.
The more modern section of the museum charts London from the end of World War II to the present day, detailing the cultural revolution that made headlines in the 60s and catapulted the city to its status as one of the world’s great entertainment and fashion hubs.
Of course, London offers plenty more to see and do for Pure residents who want to find out more about their surroundings. The British Library at Kings Cross is just a few tube stops from Pure Highbury, while Pure Hammersmith sits a short distance from the Natural History Museum, Science Museum and the V&A.