This monographic issue of «Storia Urbana» is another tile of the now vast mosaic representing the war damage and the reconstruction of the architectural and urban heritage after the Second World War, gotten under way about ten years ago by Gian Paolo Treccani. After the issues on Italy (2007), Germany (2010), Japan (2013) and France (2017), it is now the turn of Great Britain, one of the most emblematic countries in Europe for the specificity of the issues that revolved around reconstruction, whose modes could begin to be discussed very early on in comparison to the countries marked by defeat and invasion, opening a debate that enjoyed the widespread participation of an attentive and cognizant public opinion and that constitutes a unique case in the European panorama of the Second World War. Relying on a vast bibliography now available on the subject, the six essays that make up this issue deal, in a precise logical sequence, with some emblematic phases of the architectural and urban heritage in Britain during and after the war. The specific topics analysed are: the vulnerability of the British cities affected by the bombings; the role of planners in the reconstruction process; the more general issues of memory and urban identity in comparison to other European contexts; the emblematic case of St Michael’s Cathedral in Coventry; the debate on the fate of the churches in the City of London; and a related case study of the church of St Alban’s.
Keywords: Great Britain, Second World War, Blitz, War damage, Post-war reconstruction.