Broadwick Street, W1F

Broadwick Street runs west-east between Marshall Street and Wardour Street, crossing Berwick Street.

Broadwick Street was formerly Broad Street. As such it was notorious for being the centre of an 1854 outbreak of cholera which killed 616 people. The disease was widely thought to be caused by air-borne miasma.

Physician John Snow’s hypothesis was that it spread because of germ-contaminated water. Dr Snow traced the outbreak to a public water pump on the street and disabled the pump. The outbreak ceased.

This discovery came to influence public health and the construction of improved sanitation facilities.

A replica pump, together with an explanatory plaque, was erected in 1992 close to the original location.

The site of modern Broadwick Street extends across four original estates - Colman Hedge Close, Little Gelding’s Close, Pawlett’s Garden and Pesthouse Close. Building started at the eastern end in 1686.

Until 1936, most of the street was called Broad Street and the eastern section Edward Street.

Edward Street might have taken its name from Edward Wardour, who had lived in a house near the site of the new street.

A house on the corner of Broadwick and Marshall Street was the birthplace and childhood home of William Blake.

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