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London Metropolitan Archives (LMA) is home to an amazing range of documents, images, maps, films and books about London. LMA is free to use and open to everyone.

Whether you're tracing your family history or researching the history of your neighbourhood, if you're interested in London or Londoners, LMA is the place to visit!

LMA is reopening in September

We are looking forward to welcoming readers back to LMA on a pre-booked basis for access to original documents only from Monday 7 September 2020. Details of how to book and opening times will be made available on this website in mid August.

We are determined to reopen in a way which is safe for staff and readers; we will have social distancing in place and we are redesigning our systems and building to operate safely and smoothly. With necessarily reduced capacity, our first priority will be to provide essential access to original documents which are required for urgent or official research. Consequently we are encouraging everyone to consider whether access to original documents is critical or if it can be deferred for a few months into the later autumn. Use of public transport in central London is still for essential travel only and official advice is to consider using the enhanced pedestrian and cycle routes available.

Because numbers using the building will be very restricted, we will need to moderate our booking system to ensure fair and timely access. Also, in order to maximise the number of readers who can consult original documents which are only available at LMA, browsing of books and catalogues, use of the public computers, use of the Mediatheque and printing facilities will not be available.

You can use the LMA catalogue to identify the records you need to see and we will be able to help you order them and book consultation slots as well as guide you through our new consultation guidelines when you visit LMA. We also have many online resources which you can use and we are adding to and improving these all the time.

Collage - the London Picture Archive

Many of the LMA image collections are available on Collage: The London Picture Archive - a website which presents a fascinating glimpse of nearly 600 years of life in the capital.

Among the features of the site, the London Picture Map provides a unique way to access images of buildings and places which no longer exist, presenting a searchable vision of a lost London which allows visitors to view pictures of their neighbourhood from bygone days.

Collage Explore

Family history

If you're looking for ancestors from the London area, you've come to the right place. Explore our family history to find out all the options available to you.

Search the archives

Use our catalogue to search the collections, and plan which documents you want to see when you come to LMA.

Don't forget to register for a History Card that allows you to view original documents when you visit.

Explore the collections

London's history from 1067 to the present day is recorded in a wealth of archives and specialist library books at LMA.

Find out more about the different sources of information we hold on our collections page.

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