LSN: London Street Noises

room 11 ECHOES

London, Greater London, England, United Kingdom

In September of 1928 five locations across central London were recorded by a team from Columbia Records led by Commander Daniel and supported by the Daily Mail. The project was prompted by a pressing concern for the impact on health and wellbeing from traffic noise.

These historical recordings are now available to you within this soundwalk at the exact locations of where those recordings were originally taken.

You now see a map with blue bubbles representing the 5 locations where the recordings were taken in September 1928. You can start with any of them, but you’ll be able to hear the recording only within the area delimited by the bubble. By tapping on a bubble, you will see the name of the location, and by tapping on the name of the location, you can access some background information.

The same background information is available as a read aloud version in an area adjacent to the relative location if you prefer to hear it instead of reading it on your device screen. A sixth bubble along Oxford Street contains some info about the recording technology used at the time.

Once you’ve listened to the 1928 soundscape, please fill in the anonymous google form linked in the location description.

When the soundwalk is open in map view, you can also tap on the ‘List’ icon on the top right corner to see a list of the locations and their descriptions. By tapping on the items in the list, you will then access the full description.

MORE ABOUT THIS PROJECT: Twitter: @londonnoises

HUSH City app If you want to anonymously share the current soundscape of the location you are in with the community, please install the Hush City app. The recordings will be then publicly available here

Android iOS

When answering the first question “What prompted you to record this sound?” please reply ‘LSN’, so that we can identify the recording as part of the London Street Noises project.

For feedback or questions about the project, please email us at

Mattia Cobianchi

Mattia Cobianchi



The Echoes

LeicesterSquare_1928 soundscape

In 1928, the sonic environment of Leicester Square used to be described as a medley of transportatio…

Leicester Square_ReadAloud Text

Source: Daily Mail, 14.09.1928, ‘The Worst Noise’, Issue: 10107, p.9 and ‘Quieter Motor Horns’, 26.1…

Whitechapel_1928 soundscape

The sound recording taken at 1 Leman Street, Whitechapel, was the first in the series of “London str…

WhiteChapel_ReadAloud Text

Source: Daily Mail, ‘London Street Noises’, 06.09.1928, Issue: 10100, p.9

The recording process

The recordings were made in September 1928. The audio technology of the time was very different from…

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