The Underground Map


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Cubitt Town ·
December
11
2019

The Underground Map is a project which is creating street histories for the areas of London and surrounding counties lying inside the M25.


In a series of maps from the 1750s until the 1950s, you can see how London grew from a city which only reached as far as Park Lane into the post war megapolis we know today. There are now over 85 000 articles on all variety of locations including roads, houses, schools, pubs and palaces.

You can begin exploring by choosing a place from the dropdown list at the top left and then clicking Reset Location.

As maps are displayed, click on the markers to view location articles.

You can also view historical maps of London - click on the "pile of paper" control on the top right of a page's map to change to a particular decade.

Latest on The Underground Map...
Plevna Street, E14
Plevna Street forms part of the St John’s Estate. Building lots on the new streets of Atworth Street, Galbraith Street, Launch Street, Castalia Street and Plevna Street were auctioned in 1881–2 by the British Land Company.

The brochure for the estate claimed that the estate was "within a few minutes ride of the city" - quite an exaggeration!

After Second World War bombing, the St John’s Estate - including a rebuilt Plevna Street - was built by Poplar Borough Council in the the triangle formed by Manchester Road, East Ferry Road and Glengall Grove.

»more



 

Featured articles

FEBRUARY
28
2019

 

Watford Close, SW11
Watford Close is a small street on the Ethelburga Estate. This substantial estate between Battersea Bridge and Albert Bridge Roads is understated for an LCC development of its date, 1963–5. Its planning, pleasantly knitting together a series of internal squares, makes up for a certain want of architectural imagination.

The LCC’s involvement with the wedge of land between the main roads to the bridges dates back to 1958, when it agreed to build a hostel here for 200 students as part of the deal for turning Battersea Polytechnic into a college of advanced technology. This tall and imposing building, the future Ralph West Hall, was erected to designs by the LCC Architect’s Department in 1959–61 (job architect, Michael Horsman). It was demolished in 2009. Its prominent site facing Albert Bridge Road was noted at the planning stage as adjoining an ‘area to be redeveloped by the Council to the west’.

The Ethelburga Estate scheme came before the London County Council in November 1960. It would be a mixed de...
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FEBRUARY
27
2019

 

Crowndale Road, NW1
Crowndale Road was at first called Fig Lane and then Gloucester Place. To the south of Fig Lane lay the Duke of Bedford’s Fig’s Mead estate.

Along the north side of Crowndale Road, houses were built of ’great distinction’. Nos. 18 to 24 was known as Cantlowes House.

On the south side at numbers 31-53 consists of a grade II listed terrace erected in the 1840s on the Duke of Bedford’s land. Set back behind front gardens with railings, the houses are of three storeys raised on basements.

Opposite on the north side set back behind sizeable front gardens, are Nos. 48-72, one of the oldest surviving terraces in Camden Town. The terrace is likely to date from the late 18th century, and had the name Gloucester Place, later expanded to be the name of the whole road.
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FEBRUARY
26
2019

 

Little Green Street, NW5
Little Green Street was built in the 1780s and is one of the few intact Georgian streets in London. The street has only eight houses on one side and two on the other, all built in the 1780s and Grade II listed. The original inhabitants included manual workers such as carpenters with the street marked by Booth’s poverty map as being a mixture of poor and fairly comfortable.

Little Green Street inspired the 1966 song ’Dead End Street’ by The Kinks and they made one of the first music videos for it in the street.
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FEBRUARY
25
2019

 

Warlingham
Warlingham is a village in the Tandridge district of Surrey. The village lay within the Anglo-Saxon administrative division of Tandridge hundred.

Warlingham Manor was assigned by William de Watevile in 1144 to Bermondsey Priory, which held it until the dissolution of the monasteries, subject to certain retained rights to the de Watevile, later de Godstone family.

Immediately after, in 1544, Sir John Gresham, who had made large loans to the state, was granted the whole estate. Later the manor descended to Rev. Atwood Wigsell of Sanderstead Court in the 18th century and remained in that family until at least 1911.

A notable Warlingham resident of the Victorian period was Sir Joseph Swan, inventor of the incandescent light bulb.

Warlingham gave its name to the large psychiatric hospital that was opened on the borders of Warlingham and Chelsham in 1903. Originally called the Croydon Mental Hospital the institution was renamed Warlingham Park Hospital in the 1930s. The buildings, apart fr...
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FEBRUARY
24
2019

 

Dyne Road, NW6
Dyne Road dates from the just after the opening of Kilburn Station in 1879. Dyne Road was the first road built in what was called the ’Waterloo Estate’ started in the very early 1880s by builders Scott and Jolley.

Only in 1896, after the rest of the Waterloo Estate was finished, was Dyne Road extended westwards and completed.
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FEBRUARY
23
2019

 

Campden Grove, W8
Campden Grove runs between Kensington Church Street and Hornton Street. Campden Grove was part of the Pitt Estate. William Eales, a timber merchant, and Jeremiah Little, a builder, both from St Marylebone had the building lease to develop most of the Pitt Estate, granted by Steven Pitt in 1844.

They sub-contracted the work to John Salmon of Wiple Place, Kensington Church Street. He built Nos. 1-26 (consec.) Campden Grove. Nos. 5-88 were rebuilt by Egglesden and Myers of Paddington in 1871. Nos. 27-32 Campden Grove were built in 1877 by William Ford, a builder from Pimlico.

Most of the buildings are stuccoed four-storey buildings set slightly back from the pavement. A few of the houses have off-street parking and many have small, wrought iron balconies at first floor level.
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FEBRUARY
22
2019

 

Union Court, EC2N
Union Court is an alleyway off of Broad Street. Prior to the 19th century, a ’union’ could refer to a passage - a short cut/footpath linking two thoroughfares together. Pathways such as Lamb’s Passage, Lime Street Passage and Marylebone Passage were most probably identified in every day conversation as ‘unions’ and Union Court may very well have been either Broad Street Union or Wormwood Street Union.

Before recent redevelopments changed the face of this quarter, Union Court used to turn through 90° and emerge by way of a covered passage into Wormwood Street but now it terminates in a dead end.
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FEBRUARY
21
2019

 

Agincourt Road, NW3
Agincourt Road dates from 1881. In 1880 Thomas E. Gibb, a developer from Kentish Town, purchased over three acres of South End farm and took a 99 year lease on the remaining 11 acres.

He proposed to build 120 small houses at ’the lower end of middle-class respectability’ and agreed to construct a sewer.

Gibb laid out Cressy Road, Agincourt Road and Lisburne Roads and began some brickmaking activities.

The local smallpox hospital, having been closed, reopened. This sent land values sharply downwards and little housing was built at all - only two were built along with a school, its chapel, factories and a steam laundry.

In 1886, Church Commissioners, recognising the social change, allowed Gibb to build 215 houses on the 11 acres and thus Constantine Road was laid out in 1887 as a direct route from Gospel Oak and Kentish Town to South End Green and the heath, and building began. In 1894, Gibb died and his successors built another 153 houses in Constantine Road, Cressy Road and Mackeson Roads.
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FEBRUARY
20
2019

 

Wellclose Square, E1
Wellclose Square lies between Cable Street to the north and The Highway to the south. On a site east of Tower Hill, Edward III founded the Cistercian abbey of St Mary Graces in 1350. Gardens and open lands to the abbey’s east included a square field of about ten acres known as Well Close.

Wellclose Square was part of the ancient parish of Stepney. This was later divided into Whitechapel (by 1329), Wapping (1694) and St George in the East (1729). The boundaries of these parishes met in Wellclose Square.

Daniel Defoe mentions Wellclose Square is his "A tour thro’ the Whole Island of Great Britain" (1724). He says that there used to be a well in the centre of the square which was also known as Goodman’s Field’s Well.

In 1682, Nicholas Barbon leased the Liberty of Wellclose (or Well Close) from the Crown and intended to attract richer members of the local maritime community to his new Wellclose development - to be renamed ’Marine Square’.

New roads north and south, initially Little Cable Street and Ne...
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FEBRUARY
19
2019

 

Fazl Mosque
The Fazl Mosque, also known as The London Mosque is a mosque in Southfields. Inaugurated on 23 October 1926, it was the first purpose built mosque in London. At a cost of £6,223, the construction of the mosque and the purchase of the land on which it sits, was financed entirely by the donations of Ahmadi Muslim women in Qadian, India.

Since 1984, the mosque and its surrounding buildings have been the residence of the caliphs of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community and therefore, the international headquarters of the Community.
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FEBRUARY
18
2019

 

Cambridge Place, W8
Cambridge Place is a short cul-de-sac on the west side of Victoria Road. After William Hoof had built Albert Place partly on Vallotton land and partly on his own garden, the builder in him couldn’t resist taking advantage of the potential for development in his own back yard, by constructing Cambridge Place on what remained of his garden. It had to be crammed in so as to use up his garden but not actually encroach too close to his house, called Madeley House.

It is accessed by a long passage between Nos. 4 and 5 Albert Place and by an alley into Victoria Road at the top. The houses were built between 1850 and 1851 and are similar to those in Albert Place, but a bit larger. At the same time Hoof built houses on the corner with Victoria Road, called Clive Villas.
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FEBRUARY
17
2019

 

Northfields, SW18
Northfields takes it name as being the North Field of the ancient manor of Dunsford. North Field lay between West Hill and the River Thames and was much larger than the current road of this name which runs to the east of Wandsworth Park.

It road began in the 1860s a path running parallel to Point Pleasant backing onto the ’British School’. To the west of the road were allotments.

Before the turn of the twentieth century, Wandsworth was a heavily industrial suburb centred around the River Wandle with an iron mill, brass industry and a brewery. The Northfield Nursery was a final bulwark of green stopping the westward march of industry.

The London County Council had seen the creation of public parks as one of its primary concern. In 1897, Wandsworth District Board were given the opportunity to buy eight hectares of land between the south bank of the River Thames and Putney Bridge Road, consisting of allotment gardens interspersed with public footpaths. Northfield became its eastern edge.

Wandsworth Park was ...
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FEBRUARY
16
2019

 

Southfields
Southfields is mainly residential, historically a part of Wandsworth, and is divided between SW18 and SW19 postcode areas. Southfields takes its name from the old manorial system, where one field was known as the South Field of the manor of Dunsford. The equivalent North Field lay between West Hill and the River Thames and survives in the short road named Northfields which runs to the east of Wandsworth Park.

Until the late 19th century, Southfields was still fields, situated between the more developed villages of Wimbledon and Putney.

After the District & London & South Western Railway from Wimbledon to Putney Bridge opened in June 1889, the area started to urbanise, with the first school opening a year later on Merton Road.

The main residential areas of Southfields are the "Southfields Triangle" and "The Grid".

The "Southfields Triangle" is a series of roads and streets that (somewhat) resemble a triangle. It covers the area from Standen Road in the south to Granville Road in the north. In 1904, the Frame Foods babyfood company opened its fact...
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FEBRUARY
15
2019

 

Linley Sambourne House
18 Stafford Terrace, formerly known as Linley Sambourne House, was the home of the Punch illustrator Edward Linley Sambourne and open as a museum. It was the home of the Punch illustrator Edward Linley Sambourne (1844-1910).

18 Stafford Terrace was an almost new townhouse when the Sambournes moved in, in 1875. Linley Sambourne set about re-decorating the house in the Aesthetic style. Today the house is a fine example of middle-class Aestheticism; its influences can still be seen permeating throughout the house, from decorative Sunflower motifs in the stained glass windows to the fine selection of William Morris wallpapers that hang within the rooms through to the displayed collection of blue-and-white Chinese import porcelain.

Read the Linley Sambourne House entry on the Wikipedia...
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FEBRUARY
14
2019

 

St Brides Avenue, EC4Y
St Brides Avenue is a narrow alley which leaves Fleet Street almost opposite Shoe Lane. It turns east to pass between St Bride’s Church and the rear of the Old Bell Inn, with an additional branch leading by way of a wide covered path into Salisbury Court. It was once a significant passageway, arched over at the Fleet Street entrance, but is now open to the elements and serves merely as a short cut, for those in the know, between New Bridge Street, Fleet Street and the Bishop of Salisbury’s Court.

The rear entrance to the Old Bell, by which most of the regulars arrive, is really quite unobtrusive; a plain door devoid of any accompanying signs leaping out to declare the facilities on offer. The Bell is a solid pub and exists for the solid City drinker as it was originally intended. It stands on the site of the Swan tavern, where Wynkin de Worde, assistant to William Caxton, is supposed to have used a room as his workshop.

When Sir Christopher Wren drew up his plans for rebuilding St Bride’s church in 1671 he constructed the ...
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FEBRUARY
13
2019

 

North Dulwich
North Dulwich, despite being a Victorian-era station is an estate agent invention as a district. Given the cache of the term ’Dulwich’, the half of Herne Hill which lies in the London Borough of Southwark rather than Lambeth has recently become the ‘North Dulwich Triangle’ which is comprised of the roads contained within the triangle bordered by Half Moon Lane, Herne Hill and Red Post Hill.

North Dulwich station itself - just about within the triangle - was designed in a hybrid classical style by Charles Barry, Jr. and built in 1868 by the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway. It is listed Grade II on the National Heritage List for England as is the K6 telephone kiosk inside the portico of the station.
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FEBRUARY
12
2019

 

Mile End
Mile End is recorded in 1288 as ’La Mile ende’ and means ’the hamlet a mile away’. It was a mile distance from Aldgate in the City of London as reached by the London to Colchester road.

In around 1691 Mile End became known as Mile End Old Town because a new unconnected settlement to the west and adjacent to Spitalfields had taken the name Mile End New Town.

Excavations have suggested there were very few buildings before 1300.

Mile End Road moved to its present-day alignment after the foundation of Bow Bridge in 1110. In the medieval period, it was known as ‘Aldgatestrete’, as it led to the eastern entrance to the City of London at Aldgate. The area running alongside Mile End Road was known as Mile End Green, and became known as a place of assembly for Londoners, as reflected in the name of Assembly Passage.

For most of the medieval period, this road was surrounded by open fields on either side. Speculative developments existed by the end of the 16th century and continued throughout the 18th century. It ...
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FEBRUARY
11
2019

 

Archer Street, W1D
Archer Street was Arch Street in 1675, Orchard Street in 1720 and Archer Street by 1746. In Colonel Panton’s building petition of 1671, Archer Street first appears as a "short street leading from out of Windmill Street over against Windmill Yard towards St. Giles." Before 1836, the street came to an abrupt end at the eastern boundary of Panton’s ground. It was connected to Rupert Street by a narrow passage through a stable yard. But in 1836, the stable buildings had been demolished and Archer Street extended to Rupert Street.

Archer Street was lined for the most part with modest houses. Old photographs showed a pair of small cottages dating from about 1700.

So far, a normal Soho street history.

But in the twentieth century, Archer Street became known as a meeting point for West End musicians. The street became this hub due to its proximity to work places (nearby theatres and clubs) and places to drink and socialise.

The Apollo and The Lyric both had stage doors which opened onto the street. Meanwhile, the M...
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FEBRUARY
10
2019

 

Belsize Avenue, NW3
Belsize Avenue was once the driveway to the former Belsize House. Before suburbanisation the main drive leading to Belsize House (c.1500-1853) corresponded with the line of the present Belsize Avenue. The house itself had a substantial courtyard form and was surrounded by extensive gardens with views over London to the south. The surrounding land was in agricultural production with a combination of arable land and pasture supplying the capital.

Belsize Avenue was the scene of 18th century traffic jams when the grounds were used as a pleasure garden. Until 1835 a five-barred gate closed the east end of Belsize Avenue.

In 1852 Charles James Palmer, a Bloomsbury solicitor, bought the lease of Belsize House, with the intention of building. The Dean and Chapter of Westminster decided to retain control of the Avenue, keeping it undeveloped and so Palmer had to change his building layout plans.

A temporary fire station was established in Belsize Avenue during 1869, and in 1870 the Dean and Chapter finally gave...
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FEBRUARY
9
2019

 

Boxall Road, SE21
Boxall Road was formerly Boxall Row. In about 1773, wheelwright John Shaw and builder William Levens built six brick houses at the eastern end (starting with a wheelwright’s shop), for Robert Boxall, lessee of ’The Greyhound’ Inn. The road was gradually extended westward, to link up with Turney Road in the late 1870s.

Dulwich Village was expanding rapidly by the late 1870s and this brought work for gardeners, cooks and other occupations that tended to the needs of the wealthy. There was an increasing shortage of accommodation for the low-paid.

One of the Governors of Dulwich College therefore set up the Dulwich Cottage Company Ltd (DCCL) to provide low rental housing for those who attended to the richer homes of Dulwich. It acquired land from Dulwich College Estate that faced onto Boxall Row.

Cottages in Boxall Road were designed by Charles Barry Jnr, architect to the Dulwich Estate, in the ’Dutch/German’ style designed to blend in with the character o...
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FEBRUARY
8
2019

 

Soho Square, W1D
In its early years, Soho Square was one of the most fashionable places to live in London. Soho Square is a public park within a sqaure leased by the Soho Square Garden Committee to Westminster City council.

The original name was King Square (after Charles II) and a statue of the ’Merry Monarch’ has stood in the square since 1681.

The development lease to convert the surrounding fields, for ​53 years and four months, was granted in 1677 to Richard Frith, elector of the Corporation of London and bricklayer.

In 1778, the naturalist Joseph Banks of 32 Soho Square was elected president of the Royal Society and his home hosted scientists visiting from around the world.

Between 1778 and 1801 the Square was home to the infamous White House brothel at the Manor House, 21 Soho Square.

A sequence of house rebuilding and renovation began in the 1730s, when many of the houses built in the 1670s and 1680s were becoming dilapidated and old fashioned, continued for over a century. Between 1880 and 1...
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FEBRUARY
7
2019

 

Choumert Square, SE15
Choumert Square is reputedly London’s smallest square. Choumert Square consists of small Victorian houses that were infilled a garden of a Rye Lane house in the c 1870s.

It is now a car-free cul-de-sac off of Choumert Grove and was built as a row of one-bedroom cottages without back gardens. Each cottage has a small front garden which are generally well-tended.

While called a ’square’, it is more of a lane which has a community of residents which opens itself for a summer Open Day once every year.


»read full article


FEBRUARY
6
2019

 

Agar Place, NW1
Agar Place is a survivor of Agar Town. The stretch of countryside between the future site of Agar Place and the future site of King’s Cross Station was leased by ’Counsellor’ William Agar, QC in 1816.

A quarter of a century later, he started to cover his fields with tightly-packed rows of two- and four-roomed workers’ cottages. Agar Town, as it became known, turned into a notorious slum area, crowded with the poor of St Giles whose homes were destroyed when New Oxford Street was formed. Agar Town was built over in turn by the Midland Railway.

Agar Place stood slightly apart from the rest of Agar Town and survives to this day.
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FEBRUARY
5
2019

 

Agar Grove, NW1
Formerly known as St Paul’s Road, the name Agar Grove dates from the early 20th century. It links the ancient streets of York Way (Maiden Lane) to St Pancras Way, and continues to Royal College Street. The street runs along the lower edge of a slope.

Agar Grove was called after William Agar an irascible lawyer who lived in Camden. Having also been the name and the brains behind the squalid Agar Town, he opposed Regent’s Canal going through his land. Agar Town disappeared when the next transport revolution - the Midland Railway - arrived in the area.

This newly fashionable area was literally and figuratively undermined following the passing of the Midland Railway (Extension to London) Bill in 1863. The line was constructed between 1864 and 1867. Two cut and fill tunnels passed diagonally beneath Camden Road and the newly laid-out Camden Square and mews. The tracks emerged from the tunnel via a cutting south of Murray Mews, passed under Agar Grove and then went towards the vast railway lands which stretched towards St Pancras.

...
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FEBRUARY
4
2019

 

Balaclava Road, KT6
Balaclava Road was set out by Charles Adams, a local builder. Houses in Balaclava Road began to be built in 1894. Charles Adams erected 17 villas in three phases between 1894 and 1898, with the houses of each phase being of the same design.

A group of five houses at the western end of Balaclava Road were the final works of Charles Adams, who commissioned local architect Alfred Mason to design the five detached villas for him. Other local examples of Mason’s work are the Surbiton Assembly Rooms.

After 1905 there was no further building activity in the area until the 1930s when infill development took place at the eastern end of Balaclava Road.
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FEBRUARY
3
2019

 

Callcott Street, W8
Callcott Street is a small street between Uxbridge Street and Hillgate Place. The area itself is sometimes known as ‘Hillgate Village’. The houses are small terraced Victorian houses one two floors plus basements, and are painted in a multitude of colours from dark blue to light green.

The street is tree-lined and has a village feel to it. At the end of the street is a small old-fashioned neighbourhood pub called the Uxbridge Arms.

It was part of the estate known as The Racks. Then William Johnson and Joseph Clutterbuck began turning what had been a brickfield into a residential area.

Clutterbuck died in about 1851 having made a start on development, using other builders to carry out the work. William Johnson continued selling off plots. Over 200 houses were built in the following decade, with a large number of individual builders constructing a few houses each.

Clutterbuck, or builders appointed by him, were responsible for the construction of houses in Calcott Street (formerly William Street).
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FEBRUARY
2
2019

 

Red Lion Court, EC4A
Red Lion Court forms part of labyrinth of little passages behind the shops on the north side of Fleet Street. Although many of the old buildings have been replaced by modern structures these age-old byways hold a great deal of history and provide for a very satisfying stroll away from the hustle and bustle of Fleet Street.

The narrow passage of Red Lion Court branches from Fleet Street. A little way along, the passage widens out and here, until quite recently, stood the Red Lion tavern – after which the Court was named. There has been a tavern in Red Lion Court since 1575 but unfortunately the long establishment came to an end when redevelopment encompassed the area. Just past the site of the tavern a right left kink leads to Pemberton Row where an arrow on the wall points right, under an archway, to Dr Johnson’s House in Gough Square.

As the Great Fire approached Red Lion Court, on its westward progression, it came up against a brick built house which gave the City fire fighters that much needed time to demolish buildings further along the way. By creating a...
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FEBRUARY
1
2019

 

Pageantmaster Court, EC4M
Pageantmaster Court was Ludgate Court and renamed in the summer of 1993. One of the final bombsites to survive in the City of London, the existing Queen’s Head pub had until that fatal day in 1940 the Queen’s Head had the company of the Blue Last tavern in Ludgate Broadway, the Ventura Restaurant and a philatelists shop.

The Roman Lud Gate was situated a few metres from the later Pageantmaster Court. Lud-Gate was the last and most westerly of the gates. The gate was far from small but compared with its counterparts was probably one of the minor ways into the City. During the Roman occupation of the City there would have been a stone bath just inside the wall where those with right of entry could clean off the grime of the dusty road from the west.

London’s Roman wall, along with all the gates, was demolished in 1760 and no evidence remains of either Ludgate or any of the other five gates.
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