Vanessa Toulmin

Shows of London: Illegitimate Entertainment and Shop Shows in London 1800 to 1900

Vanessa Toulmin, Director of the National Fairground Archive and Professor at the University of Sheffield, gave a talk at UCL’s Gustave Tuck Lecture Theatre about London’s ephemeral and transitory pop up shop culture, which, from the 18th century onwards, formed a major part of the city’s burgeoning and expanding entertainment culture. With fleas on Regent Street and whales on Charing Cross, what we consider to be offbeat and off the wall entertainment today was actually centered in the heart of John Nash’s Regency London development.

All images courtesy of the National Fairground Archive, University Sheffield Library.