These two videos are nothing short of amazing.
They were created in 2013 by two teams of six students from De Montfort University. The task was to create a gritty representation of 17th century London.
Both videos ‘recreate’ 17th century London as it existed before The Great Fire of 1666. The amount of research is clear, not to mention artistic and animation skills. They researched street layouts using historical maps, contemporary building construction, and diaries from the period. The hanging signs record genuine inns and businesses from contemporary records.
Watching these videos really helps me to imagine myself back in the period. One of the things I notice is the number of church spires. London had 126 parishes, and although most of them have not survived, the scenes remind me very much of central Norwich today, with a church and little churchyard at almost every corner. I realise that London must have looked very similar. I literally lose myself every time I watch these.
The videos were created for ‘Off the Map’, a competition run by The British Library and video game developers GameCity and Crytek. ‘Pudding Lane Productions’ (above) won first prize.
The first video lasts 3 minutes 29 seconds; Triumphant Goat’s, below, is 7 minutes 59 seconds.