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London Hidden Interiors [Hardcover]

Philip Davies
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)

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Book Description

8 Nov 2012
180 of London's best conserved and least known interiors are revealed in 1500 spectacular photographs. Following his successes with revealing London s vanished architectural heritage in Lost London and Panoramas of Lost London, Philip Davies now turns his attention to London s conserved heritage, presenting an expert introductory essay followed by the most extraordinary collection of contemporary photographs of London s historic interiors ever published. The increasing popularity of Open City has stimulated the curiosity of local Londoners and visitors from afar, awakening renewed interest and comprehension of London s succes in preserving amazing interiors, from private salons to traditional public houses, from ornate churches to industrial plants. London Hidden Interiors has one hundred and eighty examples which have been selected from a complete range of building types to convey the richness and diversity of London s architectural heritage and the secrets that lie within. It concentrates generally on the buildings and interiors that are lesser known and to which the public are not normally allowed the hidden and the unusual, the quirky and the eccentric, although there is space too for some of the better known. The careful composition, superb lighting and exposure of the images featured in this book are themselves a lesson in conservation, capturing the sense of these unique spaces whilst at the same time revealing the important architectural detail; Derek Kendall s photographs, perfectly reproduced, make this book a visual delight and a major contribution to the architectural history of London.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Atlantic Publishing; 1 edition (8 Nov 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0956864244
  • ISBN-13: 978-0956864246
  • Product Dimensions: 30 x 26.2 x 4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (40 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 148,087 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


I am dazzled positively dazzled... this is my book of the year, and you may quote me. --Bill Bryson

The book with the most visual clout in 2012 is the arm-breaking London Hidden Interiors (Atlantic Publishing, £40), text by Philip Davies, photographs by Derek Kendall, under the sponsorship of English Heritage. Open it anywhere and dream awhile in some of the world's most gorgeous spaces. --Daily Express

Another triumph. Magnificent book. --Lloyd Grossman

About the Author

Philip Davies has been in the forefront of managing change to London s most important historic buildings and places for over 35 years, most recently as the Planning and Development Director for London and South-East England at English Heritage. Philip s most recent books Lost London 1870-1945 and Panoramas of Lost London were published to huge acclaim.

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Customer Reviews

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4.9 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book of visual riches 22 Nov 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Philip Davies in this excellent book brings together in 1,700 images the richness of styles found in these London interiors. Derek Kendall's stunning photographs are to be enjoyed at leisure, savouring the amazing detail. The buildings range from shops, theatres, churches, libraries, public buildings and even Wilton's Music Hall in the East End. The accompanying text covers in fascinating detail the history of each building. The conservation of these buildings can now be enjoyed in the pages of this sumptuous book. This would make an exceptional gift for anyone who `Loves London'.London Hidden Interiors
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Open Sesame! 2 Dec 2012
This book is sheer magic, taking you inside buildings you may have passed or glimpsed a thousand times without ever imagining the extraordinary spaces within. Perhaps some of the places are really unimaginable--the eerie depths of the Kingsway Tram Subway, for instance, or the dazzling Art Deco foyer of the Daily Express Building on Fleet Street. Some, like Lambeth Palace with its thirteenth-century crypt, are testimony to London's great past, others, like the glowing hall of the London Central Mosque by Regent's Park, to its present rich multiculturalism. Philip Davies and Derek Kendall open so many doors to us with their informative text and spectacular pictures, beckoning us inside one Aladdin's Cave after another--180 in all. Anyone who loves London, anyone who loves books, will revel in their revelations.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars He does it again 12 Jan 2013
Mr Davies and English Heritage have been responsible for two of the most must-give London books published around Christmas-time in recent years. The pair of Lost London books were essential and engrossing additions to all reputable London bookshelves. And now they've even managed to revitalise a somewhat stale format - photos of interiors of buildings you've never been in - with a book of superb colour photos and witty text, and with a title avoiding the use of the word 'secret'. The book covers the usuals (The Freemasons Hall, the Kingsway Tram Subway, the Royal Courts of Justice) along with some fresher choices (the Pathology Museum, St Etheldreda's church, Middlesex Hospital Chapel) but all get photographed with rare art and skill, by one Derek Kendall, and written about with historical rigor and wit. Did you know, for example, that Etheldreda is the name from which the modern name Audrey is derived, and that the trade in talismans sold in the Middle Ages in the name of Saint Etheldreda has given us the word 'tawdry'? The page layouts are also a lesson in the efficient deployment of photographs of different sizes. A joy and an education between hard covers.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Book 1 Dec 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is a sumptuous feast to the eye.The photographs are exceptional and anyone who loves London will be delighted with both the photographs and the narrative. Excellent buy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb! 4 Jan 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
The research, pictures and history in this book are excellent. I learned a lot and highly recommend this well constructed tome. Many thanks to the authors and the architects and tradesmen of bygone years. Too bad they don't build 'em like they used to...
One warning: You will need a strong bookcase as it's very heavy!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of "Hidden London Interiors" 4 Feb 2013
I really liked this because although I was born in London and lived there till I was 9, I've been getting to know parts of the place really well by taking part with one of my daughters in the Big Issue Big London Night Walk which I've done three times now. Four of the places that feature in the book are places where we stopped, or walked past, ie Conway Hall, Lincoln's Inn, the Foundling Hospital Museum and the House of St Barnabas in Soho, none of which I'd ever previously visited, so the book is doubly interesting. There you are. That's my review!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent publication. 28 Jan 2013
By Zvezda
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book contains views of places within London you've always wondered what lay behind the doors. The photos of interiors are superb. Although the venue description can be limited, the information is enough for to go on and explore further, after all the book is based around the wonderful interiors of many shut away or unknown places of London.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book 22 Jan 2013
By pennpal
This book is ideal for long, rainy nights. It is nice to enjoy a glass of red wine and to look at the amazing pictures. There are some truly magnificent interiors.
Very relaxing and artistic!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars What a Treasure
Really opens your eyes to what splendours lie behind the doors of some of London's "houses". A real treasure trove of information.
Published 2 months ago by Emmasgrandy
5.0 out of 5 stars Feast for the Eyes
If you love London, history, architecture and photography you can't go wrong with this great book. As other readers have pointed out although its coffee table size, you will... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Den Lee
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent book on London's hidden gems!
Would only highly recommend this book. It presents many hidden places right by everybody's doorstep and which are still well preserved and unknown. Read more
Published 6 months ago by CM
5.0 out of 5 stars What a treat!
Wonderful photographs of truly special buildings, many of which are not accessible to the public. An apt birthday gift for my retired architect husband.
Published 8 months ago by Juliet Gore
5.0 out of 5 stars The most Amazing Book about London Interiors ever!
This book really takes your breath away. So many hidden gems I never knew existed inside London buildings. A must-have book for anyone whole loves architecture or interior designs.
Published 13 months ago by Alfenreview
5.0 out of 5 stars London hidden interiors
Excellent reference book for our next visit to London.
Superb photography highlighting some truly stunning hidden gems, amazing architectural delights.
Published 13 months ago by Terry Winston
5.0 out of 5 stars A stunning beautiful book
I really appreciate architecture and this book is full of stunningly presented images of truly wonderful interiors and amazingly the book is wholly produced in England rather than... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Lin Richards
5.0 out of 5 stars London
I bought this book for my wife who found the photographs and content a great read.An excellen book to spend time browsing
Published 14 months ago by Sparky199
5.0 out of 5 stars A thing of beauty
A beautiful book, worth every penny. The photo are well reproduced and the text is illuminating. The subjects are diverse everything from churches to pie and mash shops. Read more
Published 14 months ago by KAW
4.0 out of 5 stars Hard to Believe
Excellent value for money and a real feast for the eyes, amazing so many wondeful buildings in London hidden from general view.
Published 15 months ago by Red Rover
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