According to an online poll, national treasure David Attenborough tops the list of greatest Londoners of all time. Who else made the cut?


Two thirds of those surveyed in the poll for the Museum Of London believe that having the ability to inspire people is the most important trait that makes a Great Londoner.  Here’s the top 20 – do you agree with the choice?

1. David Attenborough

image of sir david attenborough

Rex Features

The broadcaster, naturalist and national treasure was born on 8 May 1926, in Isleworth, west London.

2. David Bowie

Pop singer, songwriter, actor and record producer was born David Robert Jones on 8 January 1947, in Brixton, south London.

3. Elizabeth II

Our hard-working, long-serving queen was born on 21 April 1926 in Mayfair, central London.

4. Queen Victoria

image of Queen Victoria

Rex Fetures

Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland and Empress of India, Alexandrina Victoria was born on 20 June 1837, in Kensington Palace. She was not amused…

5. Michael Caine

Born Maurice Joseph Micklewhite on 14 March 1933, in Rotherhithe, south London. And not a lot of people know that.

6. Elizabeth I

The Virgin Queen, Gloriana or Good Queen Bess, call her what you will, but the not-to-be-messed-with last Tudor monarch was born on 7 September 1533, in Greenwich, south London.

7. Samuel Pepys

Most famous for his diary, the naval administrator and Member of Parliament was born on on 23 Febraury 1633, in Lewisham, south London.

8. David Beckham

image of david beckham

Rex Features

Not just one of the most fanciable men on earth (still!), the ex Manchester Utd and England football star was born on 2 May 1975, in Leyonstone, making him a proper East End boy!

9. Geoffrey Chaucer

Known as the Father of English Literature, and the first poet to be buried in Poets’ Corner in Westminster Abbey, Chaucer was born sometime in 1343, in London…exact date and place unknown. Well, it was a long time ago.

10. Charlie Chaplin

Star of the silent screen, the English comic actor, filmaker and composer was born on 16 April 1889, in Walworth, south London

11. Alfred Hitchcock

‘Master of Suspense’, English film director Alfred was born on 13 August 1899, in Leytonstone, east London.

12. Stephen Fry

The much-loved comedian, actor, writer and presenter was born on 24 August 1957, in Hampstead, north London.

13. Bobby Moore

The legendary West Ham and 1996 World Cup-winning Captain of the England team,  Robert ‘Bobby’ Frederick Moore was born on 12 April 1941, in Barking, east London.

14. Beatrix Potter

The author of all those children’s books was born as Helen Beatrix Potter on 22 December 1866, in Kensington, west London.

15. Michael Faraday

The man who discovered elecromagnetic induction, diamagnetism and electrolysis was born on 22 September 1791, in Newington Butts, a former hamlet which is now an area close to Elephant and Castle in south London.

16. Tim Berners-Lee

image of tim berners-lee

Rex Features

The inventor of the World Wide Web was born on 8 June 1955, in London. Without Sir Tim, you wouldn’t be reading this!

17. Enid Blyton

The best-selling children’s writer was born on 11 August 1897, in East Dulwich, south London.

18. Elton John

Sir Elton Hercules John was born Reginald Kenneth Dwight on 25 March 1947, in Pinner, west London.

19. Thomas Beckett

Born 21 December 1118, in Cheapside in the City of London, he was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1162 until his murder in 1170.

20. Helen Mirren

image of helen mirren

Rex Features

Our favourite acting Dame was born Helen Lydia Mirinoff on 26 July 1945, in Hammersmith, west London.