King's College London was founded in 1828 out of concern with the perceived godless instruction at the University College on Gower Street, part of the University of London.  Included as founding members of King's College were the Duke of Wellington (1769-1852), the Archbishops and 30 Bishops of the the Church of England. The facilities near the Waterloo Bridge over the River Thames were built in 1829-31 (see picture), and opened to the first class in October 1831.  All professors, except linguists, had to be members of the Church of England, but the students did not.  Those who had completed their coursework were encouraged to take mastery examinations at Oxford and Cambridge Universities, but not the University of London, although it was much closer and had been certified as an examining body in 1836.  The governors of King's College were offended by the exclusion of divinity at the University of London, and thus advised students to take their examinations elsewhere.   

In 1840, the King's College Hospital was opened a few blocks north of King's College.  A theology department was added to King's College in 1846, founded to train priests for the Church of England. Finally in 1849 the college pioneered evening classes in London.

Fifty years after the death of Dr. John Snow, King's College in 1908 became a constituent college of the University of London.  


(Quarter Mile Section - L 17)

Source: Weinreb B, Hibbert C (eds). The London Encyclopaedia, 1993.

Old Ordnance Survey Map of 1873

Click here to see more details 14 years later