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The London public health architecture tour - Saturday 24 July 2021 10am

The London public health architecture tour - Saturday 24 July 2021 10am

Regular price £14.50
Unit price  per 
Tax included.

Join Open House for a socially-distanced walking tour exploring how public health challenges shaped London’s built environment through the ages.

This insightful walking tour from Soho to Clerkenwell — led by writer and architectural designer Eleanor Marshall — chronicles the many public health crises throughout London’s history and reveals how bold reformers, architects and public bodies radically changed our urban environment in response.

The socially-distanced walk will explain how urban qualities we take for granted today — such as clean water, fresh air and natural light — came to be recognised as crucial to good living and working conditions and radically influenced the architecture of the city. The tour will also consider how today's pandemic could reshape our city once again.

Providing a safe and fun way for enthusiastic urbanists to explore the city in our post-pandemic era, this walking tour is part of a new series responding to the core themes of the last Open House festival and wider Open City programme.

Using live audio and image sharing, participants will use their smart phones to discover the extraordinary stories of public health through the centuries. Starting in Golden Square, the site of a severe outbreak of cholera in 1854, the tour travels through Bloomsbury to Somers Town, an area of bold community health reform and finishes at Bevin Court, a controversial housing project that was part of a string of radical attempts to create modernist affordable housing in the former Borough of Finsbury.

The tour longer length will examine themes of public health, sanitary conditions and public housing by profiling pioneering buildings and people who have influenced much of modern architecture throughout Britain ever since.

Meet: 10am outside 29-30 Soho Square W1D 3QS. Duration 3 hours approx. 5 km approx. Tour ends at Bevin Court, near Angel Islington. Cost £12.50 / £9.50 concessions. (students/unemployed/furloughed etc)

Cost £14.50 / £9.50 concessions (students/unemployed/furloughed enter code CONCESSION for concession price at the shop page check out)

Participants must bring a fully charged smart phone with internet connection, downloaded Zoom in advance of the tour, bring headphones; and remember to stay at least two metres apart from each other where required. Zoom joining info will be sent out to all bookers the week before the tour. Get in touch with Adrianna at with any queries.

Our tours go ahead rain or shine....


Eleanor Marshall is a writer and architectural designer based in London. She has worked in public realm and industrial design offices in North America and the UK and with city transport authorities in Moscow, London, Edinburgh and New York. Her areas of practice are transport, health, urban design and post-war architecture. She has previously led tours in Scotland and joined the Open City team in January 2021.

Please note: Due to the continually changing situation tours may have to be rescheduled at late notice. In the event your tour date is cancelled, you may be provided with a replacement audio and printed tour or the opportunity to book onto a rescheduled date, book onto another tour or held in credit (with no expiry date).