How do you lose a river?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this paper I explore the concept of the 'lost river' and the implications this term has for our understanding of the history of changing urban environments. In taking a voyage down one of the London 2012 Olympic Park’s now-filled waterways, the Pudding Mill River, charting it and its surrounding area’s diverse history, I explore how rivers end up becoming ‘losable’. Drawing on diverse methodologies from archaeology and geography and with a particular emphasis on mapping, I argue that a literal and metaphorical exploration of such a rapidly changing environment reveals a multitude of buried narratives and fluid histories. This research suggests that the labelling of a river as ‘lost’ is not a politically neutral act and that, with its romantic connotations, the term may actually serve to legitimize insensitive and contentious changes to our environment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-14
Number of pages14
JournalLiving Maps Review
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2016


  • lost rivers
  • archaeology
  • London 2012 Olympics
  • mega events


Dive into the research topics of 'How do you lose a river?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this