Layers of London releases free education resources to explore your local history

Thursday 14 March 2019

Layers of London, a map-based history project which allows members of the public to add their own histories, stories and memories about the London they know, has embarked on a new project that will give teachers access to interactive teaching materials, all absolutely free.

This online public platform, managed by the Institute of Historical Research (IHR) at the School of Advanced Study, University of London, brings historic maps to life in completely new ways. And from today teachers can take advantage of a range of free resources to support students aged between seven and 11 and 11–14. They can even add their own local history projects to the website.

Designed and tested with the help of educators, these free ‘Layers of London’ resources walk students and teachers through the process of researching, choosing, discussing and creating their own class collections on the website, allowing classes to publish and share their local history work online and help contribute to an exciting and pioneering London history crowd-sourcing project.

Students can work through the booklets, which include interactive research and group work activities, independently and at their own pace. The teacher booklet, an annotated version of the one aimed at students, contains extension task ideas and discussion topics such ‘using maps as historical sources’ and ‘discussing the advantages and disadvantages of crowd-sources histories’. All resources support the national curriculum in history and geography and can also be used for religious education and personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE). Materials are designed to help teachers minimise lesson preparation time.

Layers of London also offers free one-hour professional development sessions for schools that would like extra support for staff using the Layers of London website and historic maps. These can be booked by contacting the Layers of London team.

Resources and more information on how to book your free training are available through

- Ends -

Notes for editors:

For accompanying images
, more information, and other possibilities please contact

About Layers of London
Layers of London is a huge multi-partner initiative led by the Institute of Historical Research at the School of Advanced Study, University of London. Partners include the British Library, MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology), Historic England, The London Metropolitan ArchivesThe National Archives, Birkbeck, University of London, and a range of national and local institutions and community groups. Officially launched in September 2018, the project has created an extensive programme of public engagement and crowdsourcing to construct a dynamic website that allows users to explore and engage with the history of London’s 32 boroughs.