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Our history

We are proud to trace the roots of today's Queen Mary University of London back to the great charitable institutions of the city's East End.

The London Hospital Medical College was founded in 1785, part of The London Infirmary that served the poor. The People's Palace, opened in 1887, brought accessible education, culture and recreation to the East End – uncovering so much ability that technical education soon blossomed into academic excellence in science, arts and the humanities. St Bartholomew's Hospital Medical College can trace its history back nearly 900 years to 1123, the reign of Henry I.

The East End is renowned for its resilience. Continually reinventing and reshaping itself in response to an ever-changing world, it's a part of London that has been a constant scene of social, political and environmental change. By the 19th century, many workers in the capital called the East End home, and at its heart grew an institution committed to providing them with educational and cultural opportunities.

From the East End to the world

The People’s Palace on Mile End Road, 1890

The People’s Palace on Mile End Road, 1890

Today, Queen Mary University of London has evolved into an international hub of education and research excellence. We offer hundreds of programmes at undergraduate and postgraduate level, and also offer an inspiring environment in which to undertake a PhD

We've formed partnerships with like-minded institutions both here in the UK and overseas. Students and staff from all over the world are a part of our family and we continue to bring world-class education and opportunities to all students who have the potential, whatever their background. We still continue to keep our commitment to our home in east London – whether we are working with local schools, businesses, charities or community groups, we take pride in our philanthropic roots.

From the very beginning, our founders aimed:

…to create an institution in which, whether in Science, Art or Literature, any students may be able to follow up his education to the highest point by means of Technical and Trade Schools, Reading Rooms and Libraries…
Sir Edmund Hay Currie, Chairman of the Beaumont Trust

Read more about the beginning of our journey...

 

A timeline of Queen Mary University of London

An illustration of QMUL buildings

See how Queen Mary has grown

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