Tower of London

Streets & Spaces

We were commissioned by Historic Royal Palaces to provide an assessment of the issues affecting the quality of the streets and spaces around the Tower of London. We worked closely with the late Ben Hamilton-Baillie on this project.

The Tower of London sits on the north bank of the River Thames and lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. The general layout established by the late 13th Century remains despite later activity on the site. The Tower of London is now one of the country’s most popular tourist attractions, with up to 14,000 visitors at peak periods. The tower is protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Our work aimed to reveal some of the strategic and detailed issues affecting the quality of the setting of the Tower of London. A primary objective during the site assessments was the identification of specific areas where the movement of pedestrians towards the main entrance to the Tower is frustrated, unpleasant or inadequate. Our report also addresses the lack of welcome and generally inhospitable quality of the streets and spaces adjacent to the Tower. A series of draft sketch drawings were prepared after the initial site visits to capture the issues and to start to explore options for urban interventions followed by more refined, presentation versions.