Bird’s-Eye View Maps of Victorian London

Updated: Jul 16

In 1880 Herbert Fry published London a handbook for Victorian visitors.


The popular book ran to many editions. A major factor for its success being the inclusion of twenty illustrations providing: “Bird’s-eye views of the principal streets.”


There are many excellent maps of Victorian London available in print and on-line but I haven’t seen these unusual and illuminating views published anywhere else and so wanted to share them here.


For example here is Buckingham Palace, a detail from Plate V.


I didn’t want to risk damaging the original book whilst scanning it and my copy has a very tight binding. So, apologies for the slight shadows in the centre of each map. If anyone knows of better quality scans please do let me know.


Plate 1. From Charing Cross through Whitehall to Westminster
Plate 1. From Charing Cross through Whitehall to Westminster

Plate 2. The Strand
Plate II. The Strand

Plate III. Fleet Street and Ludgate Hill
Plate III. Fleet Street and Ludgate Hill

Plate VI. Cannon Street
Plate IV. Cannon Street

Plate V. From Charing Cross, through Pall Mall to Pimlico
Plate V. From Charing Cross, through Pall Mall to Pimlico

Plate VI. Regent Street
Plate VI. Regent Street

Plate Vii. St James's Street and Old and New Bond Streets
Plate Vii. St James's Street and Old and New Bond Streets

Plate ViII. Piccadilly
Plate ViII. Piccadilly

Plate IX. From Hyde Park Corner, through Knightsbridge to Kensington
Plate IX. From Hyde Park Corner, through Knightsbridge to Kensington

Plate X. Edgware Road
Plate X. Edgware Road

Plate XI. From Oxford Street, by Uxbridge Road to High Street Notting Hill
Plate XI. From Oxford Street, by Uxbridge Road to High Street Notting Hill

Plate XII. Oxford Street
Plate XII. Oxford Street

Plate XIII. Baker Street
Plate XIII. Baker Street

Plate IV. Tottenham Court Road and Hampstead Road
Plate IV. Tottenham Court Road and Hampstead Road

Plate XV. New Oxford Street and Holborn
Plate XV. New Oxford Street and Holborn

Plate XVI. Euston Road and Marylebone Road
Plate XVI. Euston Road and Marylebone Road

Plate XVII. From The Poultry to Bishopsgate Street and to Whitechapel
Plate XVII. From The Poultry to Bishopsgate Street and to Whitechapel

Plate XVIII. The City Road
Plate XVIII. The City Road

Plate XIX. From London Bridge through the Borough to Newington Butts and Saint George's Fields
Plate XIX. From London Bridge through the Borough to Newington Butts and Saint George's Fields

Plate XX. The Thames - A bird's-eye view from Herbert Fry's "London" (1891)
Plate XX. The Thames

All these plates come from the 1891 edition of Fry’s London published by W.H. Allen, London.


I originally published them on my Facebook page but they can be enjoyed in far greater detail here.


If you like this sort of thing, there are many unique albums of vintage London photos to be found on my Facebook page and you don’t need to sign-up in order to see them.