Medical London: Plagues'N'Pandemics

Walking Tour

London’s long history features some of the most important people, moments and discoveries in medicine. Once known to be a dirty, unsanitary city, discover London’s role in the transformation of medical trades into the modern professions we all recognise today. See the places where old-time Londoners sought various, today-questionable treatments for their maladies, and learn about some of the most-celebrated people in medicine.


  • Explore horrible Victorian anti-masturbation devices
  • See remains of the first hospital for orphans
  • Hear great stories about British medical reformers 
  • Visit longest surviving medical society in England 
  • Site of the first hospital created by Florence Nightingale

184  £ per person

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Sights you will see:

The Medical Society of London
London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine
The Royal Society of Medicine


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Perhaps you would have wished to have a time machine after you realize that before 1873 alcohol was prescribed by doctors.


Nowadays nearly everyone has an opportunity to visit a doctor and receive proper medical advice. While just 200 years ago, it was not like that. London was once known as a dirty place and site for epidemic distempers. On our tour you will examine the highways of London’s medical past. You will discover how health care trades transformed themselves into professions, hear stories about the greatest people in medicine and see the places where people sought treatment.


Meet your Guide at the statue of Thomas Coram who was a philanthropist and campaigner. Discover how the kind-hearted man saved abandoned infants. Walk towards the national hospital of neurology and hospital for infirm and incurable women and Hear stories about cholera outbreaks. Discover how hysteria was treated by doctors and how it brought doctor Joseph Mortimer Granville, to invention of the first vibrator. Walk through the London school of hygiene and tropical disease and discover how incurable diseases were brought to London in the past few Centuries. Pass by the Cardiovascular Society founded by was a Scottish cardiologist who was knighted by King George V, before you arrive to the site of the Florence Nightingale’s first hospital. Florence Nightingale was an English social reformer and the most important person in British nursing system in the 19th Century. Discover how Florence helped British soldiers in the Crimean war.


Pass by the oldest surviving medical society in England founded in 1773 by the Quaker physician and philanthropist Dr John Coakley Lettsom.


Finish your tour at The Royal Society of Medicine, the major provider of accredited postgraduate medical education in the United Kingdom.

Meeting Point

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The Foundling Museum, 
40 Brunswick Square, 

End Point

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The Royal Society of Medicine,
1 Wimpole St, 
 W1G 0AE


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Expert Guide
Walking Experience


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Pick up & drop off


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11 am


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2 hours


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Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday