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Events and talks at the London Society in 2023 have included a diverse range of topics from a tour of a Hindu temple to watching the air ambulance take off from the rooftop of the Royal London Hospital. We look back at all that’s been happening at the society, enjoyed by our members - and also our new members.

Should London be bigger?

Our debate zeroed in on a controversial topic. The boundary of Greater London was established in 1965. Has it gone way out of date? Should it be enlarged to take the Home Counties, which are already full of London workers? Would a Greater, Greater London, with it more powers for the Mayor over more territory, strengthen the economy of South East England as a whole and make it easier to solve big problems with transport, housing and poverty?

Earls Court podcast

The London Society launched a new podcast series, called London Explained. In each episode we will focus on a different area within the capital and explore its past, present and future. Our city is constantly undergoing many changes and nothing stays frozen forever.

In the first episode of this new series, Dave Hill explored the history of Earls Court, alongside the upcoming regeneration plans for the 40 acre site.

Watch out for our next one, which is coming very soon…

London of the Future book launch at Bankside Yards 

Our book launch at Arbor, Bankside Yards was attended by many of the contributors to London of the Future, who gave their insights into what the capital could or should be like for the generations to come.

London of the Future addresses many important questions in its chapters: How will we need to adapt to climate change? Will we become a techno-utopia, with Londoners’ lives in perfect harmony with artificial intelligence? How do we achieve a London that is fair and equitable for everyone?

VIDEO: London of the Future: ‘Feeding cities is a great challenge of our time’

 In the book London of the Future, Carolyn Steel’s chapter focuses on bringing back the value of growing food in the city, arguing it has huge potential.

“We need to rediscover food; after all, public life is in the taverns and pubs and the markets,” she says.

Food is a shared necessity — but also a shared way of thinking, argues the architect and thinker on food and cities. Looking at food networks offers an unusual and illuminating way to explore how cities evolved.

Stratford Waterfront: The East London district is the latest creative hub in the capital 

 London Society trustee Dave Hill was on a tour with society members at the London College of Fashion, led by Alex Wraight, a partner of Allies & Morrison, the architecture firm that designed it.

On the banks of the Waterworks River, the London 2012 Olympic Park legacy continues to unfold.

Where have all the public toilets gone?

Clare Delmar, London Society trustee, chaired a panel discussion with commercial, community and political leaders representing interests in medicine, property development, disability, transport, building, public health and ageing. Londoners want to listen, learn and mobilise to improve the provision of public toilets.

Public toilets underpin public health, and without our health, we have nothing.

The London Air Ambulance is on a mission to save as many lives as possible 

 London’s Air Ambulance has been saving lives in London since 1989, and has been at some of the most horrific incidents in the capital. The unmistakable red helicopter that so many of us have seen flying overhead was present at the Grenfell fire disaster, the terror attacks at Westminster, and at Fishmongers’ Hall in London Bridge, where two people were fatally injured.

The London Society discusses how health inequalities affect everyone, regardless of race, class or place in society 

On a sweltering summer’s evening, Professor Kevin Fenton, public health director for London, gave an impassioned talk at NLA’s new home at the London Centre, just a stone’s throw from the Guildhall.

Fenton’s topic, close to his heart was on creating a healthier and fairer London. Professor Kevin Fenton, London’s Director of Public Health and Sadiq Khan’s health adviser, will be giving a London Society lecture on creating a healthier and fairer London.

Fenton tackled the capital’s public health challenges, focusing on health inequalities and how poorer Londoners are susceptible to chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer.

Largest Diwali festival celebrated at Neasden Temple 

Our members visited Neasden Temple, or to give its formal name, BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir. It’s a masterpiece of traditional Hindu design and exquisite workmanship.

Since its opening in 1995, the temple has so far welcomed more than 10.5 million worshippers and visitors from over 120 nations of all faiths and backgrounds. 

It has become an internationally acclaimed place of worship, learning and celebration, serving also as an integral part of the religious landscape of Britain and the local community.

Join us in 2024 for some truly inspiring and amazing events, tours and talks.