With less than a year to go until London plays host to the Olympics, here at Westminster City Archives we’re focusing on local sporting history with August’s book of the month, Sporting London: a race through time. Published in the year that the capital was awarded the 2012 Olympic Games, author Richard Tames celebrates the history and development of sports in London.
Tames provides a fascinating insight into the capital’s sporting pastimes through the centuries, including those which the city helped to popularise and are still commonly played today. Westminster’s strong role in this history is clear: our City has hosted many recreational and competitive sports events over the centuries, from horse-riding on Rotten Row in Hyde Park to cricket games at Lord’s.
The Archives Centre is an ideal place to explore both major events and lesser-known stories in Westminster’s sporting past. From rare images of a riding school at the heart of Piccadilly to photographs of long-lost swimming baths, historic lists of boxing rules and cycle race programmes, our collections help tell the story of how London became a capital for sports and leisure.