Lara Maiklem is a mudlark. She searches for lost and forgotten objects on the foreshore of the Tidal Thames, through central London and beyond. Among the thousands of things she has rescued from the mud are Tudor shoes, medieval pins, Roman pots, Georgian wig curlers and modern wedding rings. Her first book, Mudlarking: Lost and Found on the River Thames (Bloomsbury, 2019), is the story of the river told through the objects she has found and is a tale of obsession, tide-watching, mud-walking and endless hours of searching in all weathers. Mudlarking was a Sunday Times Bestseller, an Observer Book of the Year, Radio 4 Book of the Week and Winner of the 2020 Indie Book Award for Non Fiction. Her second book, A Field Guide to Larking: Beachcombing, Mudlarking, Fieldwalking and More, is an illustrated practical guide for those who want to search for themselves, whether on beaches (beachlarking), in fields (fieldlarking), houses (houselarking), gardens (gardenlarking) and of course mudlarking in rivers.
Lara grew up in the countryside, moved to London in the early 1990s and now lives a ten-minute walk from the beach on the east Kent coast. She has been mudlarking for almost 20 years and has spent a lifetime looking down for lost objects and interesting things.