The page has an embedded Google Map (another blogstuff thing I've been meaning to do for a year), and, perhaps the most intriguing box, "Related Subjects". It turns up both gems and puzzles -- alluring, distracting, a way to while away an hour very happily indeed. Frances Mary Buss, of Miss Beale and Miss Buss, the pioneering educators of girls, I can totally understand, but William Johnson Cory? Why -- because his name includes "Johnson"? The Royal College of Opthalmologists? Mary didn't even wear glasses. Call in the algorithm-tweaker! (Now *there's* a necromancer's modern trade!)
London Remembers has its lacunae (not all the MW plaques, for instance -- Southwark is missing) and some
From the page "Do we need your help?":
By now you either think we are crazy to be doing this or you're fascinated and would love to help. In the past we have thought we’d like an army of volunteers doing all the desk research, leaving us free to get out on the streets and do what we really enjoy – finding the memorials and in the process getting to know this cranky old city. But organising people, teaching the system, the house style, etc, it all takes time, and we’ve come to the conclusion that it's best for us to do the whole job. But if you can provide information for any of the war dead about whom we know nothing then we would be delighted. Pictures especially welcome.
Who are these crazy people anyway?
The team behind London Remembers is a mysterious "we", but bound to be small: I am utterly in favour of amateur endeavours, and Mary values modesty. They are so much not a commercial endeavour that the site is entirely free of ads. Charming, compelling, educational, visually appealing, easy to navigate... I could go on. I am reminded of what Robert Louis Stevenson said affectionately of Modestine at the end of his Travels with a Donkey in the Cevennes - "Her faults were those of her race and sex; her virtues were her own." The faults of London Remembers are those quirky oddities we all recognise in a labour-of-love website; its virtues are its own.It probably doesn't need stating, but this website is not a commercial concern; it is a hobby. We started collecting data about London memorials in 1999, because we enjoyed walking and cycling around the city, finding out about its history, geography and architecture. We plotted them on maps because we find maps endlessly fascinating and enjoy using them.