The Panorama of the Thames conservation project, the brain child of John Inglis and Jill Sanders, is creating a unique and enduring historical record of the banks of the river through the capital, London.
Inglis and Sanders’s work on the Thames riverside is based on a rare, hand coloured tourist guide published in 1829 by London bookseller Samuel Leigh. The work shows in pictorial form both banks of the river between Westminster and Richmond: 15 miles.
The pair have digitally restored this guide and created a delightful book from it.
Both the original 1829 and the 2014 panoramas of the riverside, between Kew Bridge and Tower Bridge, are complete and Inglis and Sanders add more information to those buildings and landmarks as they become available.
The panorama contains spectacular images and videos, with an extensive database to cover every feature along 52 miles of riverbank.
The website provides public access to some of the material from this, big, ongoing project.
Funded by individual contributions and community groups, the project shows the built and the natural environment along the river, as seen in the early 19th century. It includes a fully restored version of the orginal publication which depicts the Thames riverside in 1829.
John Inglis and Jill Sanders, in their recent Panorama newsletter (www.panoramaofthethames.com), comment that a new tab comparisons is now on the main website menu. This shows a new page which compares specific landmarks in two time periods.
Inglish and Sanders say: We will be adding more comparisons as we progress. The big advantage of presenting the comparisons in this way is that each of the images is live and can be scrolled to find other comparisons.
If you manage to find interesting new comparisons, please let us know and we can add them to the page. We welcome from the public any corrections and text contributions.
Since we started the project (in 1999) we have been giving presentations of our progress to local societies and groups along the river. We must have done about 30 presentations now in as many venues.
We have just completed a presentation for the Kew Society at the National Archives where the facilities are absolutely excellent – superb quality projection and sound, and facilities that include seating for about 120.
A new theatre seating about 300 is due for completion at Kew later this year. This was by far the best venue we have used since we started our presentations and we highly recommend it.
We spoke to the Operations Director at the National Archives who is keen to provide the facilities to other local groups and societies. We can forward contact details if you are interested.
The Kew Society’s talks are free to members but they charge for non members which helps pay for any expenses and provides income.
We do not charge local groups for giving our presentations as we sell our books afterwards. The Kew presentation was pretty much to a full house.
We have new presentations coming later this year including: a talk about how the 1829 panorama was made and how we went about restoring it, another talk about the life of Samuel Leigh (the original publisher of the 1829 panorama; and how to use our website. This last requires a fast and reliable wi-fi connection, as we had at the National Archives, and at the RCA Dyson Building in Battersea.
Our book Panorama of the Thames, A Riverside View of Georgian London (Thames & Hudson) is nearing the end of its first print run and we don’t know if it will go into a second run – it may not. You can buy the book for £30+shipping for a signed first edition. Send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Already A Riverside View of Georgian London by John R Inglis & Jill Saunders is fetching high prices with antiquarian dealers and book collectors both in the UK and internationally.
Go to the News page on the website up to date on the time and location of our next presentation.