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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!

Change in evening opening hours

Find out about the change in LMA's evening opening hours, from Monday 3 September 2018.

Current exhibition - Picturing Forgotten London

Picturing Forgotten London uncovers London’s lost buildings, places that were once the toast of the capital or part of everyday life, left behind by generations of Londoners. Prints, photographs and maps bring together a surprising record of the city, from the 1500s to the twentieth century.

From Columbia Market to the Devil’s Acre, riverside mansions to ragged schools, images created by a variety of artists will appear together for the first time to tell the story of a forgotten city. The exhibition runs until Wednesday 31 October 2018. Visit the exhibition page to find out more.

Update: Speak Out wins prestigious award

LMA is delighted to announce that the Speak Out London Diversity City HLF-funded project has won the prestigious national Archive Volunteering Award for 2017. Sponsored by the Archives and Records Association UK and Ireland and sector partners, this annual award recognises outstanding work involving volunteers within an institutional archive service.

Collage - the London Picture Library

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.

What's happening
Deciphering Old Handwriting (beginners)
24 Sep 2018
14:00 - 15:30
London Metropolitan Archives
£8 - booking essential

This practical session gives expert help in reading different types of handwriting from the 18th to early 20th centuries. You will practise with copy documents from LMA’s collections and get tips for deciphering historical writing.

Find out more about Deciphering Old Handwriting (beginners)
A visit in Conservation
27 Sep 2018
14:00 - 15:00
London Metropolitan Archives
Free - booking essential

Meet members of the Conservation team and find out about the essential work which preserves our records for future generations.

Find out more about A visit in Conservation
All events at this location