Old and New London: Temple Bar

Temple Bar was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren, in 1670–72.

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Article · City of London · ·
Temple Bar was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren, in 1670–72.

Temple Bar was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren, in 1670–72, soon after the Great Fire had swept away eighty-nine London churches, four out of the seven City gates, 460 streets, and 13,200 houses, and had destroyed fifteen of the twenty-six wards, and laid waste 436 acres of buildings, from the Tower eastward to the Inner Temple westward.

The old black gateway, once the dreaded Golgotha of English traitors, separates, it should be remembered, the Strand from Fleet Street, the city from the shire, and the Freedom of the City of London from the Liberty of the City of Westminster. As Hatton (1708—Queen Anne) says,—”This gate opens not immediately into the City itself, but into the Liberty or Freedom thereof.” We need hardly say that nothing can be more erroneous than the ordinary London supposition that Temple Bar ever formed part of the City fortifications. Mr. Gilbert à Beckett, laughing at this tradition, once said in Punch: “Temple Bar has always seemed to me a weak point in the fortifications of London. Bless you, the besieging army would never stay to bombard it—they would dash through the barber’s.”

The Great Fire never reached nearer Temple Bar than the Inner Temple, on the south side of Fleet Steet, and St. Dunstan’s Church, on the north.

The Bar is of Portland stone, which London smoke alternately blackens and calcines; and each façade has four Corinthian pilasters, an entablature, and an arched pediment. On the west (Strand) side, in two niches, stand, as eternal sentries, Charles I. and Charles II., in Roman costume. Charles I. has long ago lost his bâton, as he once deliberately lost his head. Over the keystone of the central arch there used to be the royal arms. On the east side are James I. and Elizabeth (by many able writers supposed to be Anne of Denmark, James I.’s queen). She is pointing her white finger at Child’s; while he, looking down on the passing cabs, seems to say, “I am nearly tired of standing; suppose we go to Whitehall, and sit down a bit?”

The slab over the eastern side of the arch bears the following inscription, now all but smoothed down by time:—

“Erected in the year 1670, Sir Samuel Starling, Mayor; continued in the year 1671, Sir Richard Ford, Lord Mayor; and finished in the year, 1672, Sir George Waterman, Lord Mayor.”

All these persons were friends of Pepys.

The upper part of the Bar is flanked by scrolls, but the fruit and flowers once sculptured on the pediment, and the supporters of the royal arms over the posterns, have crumbled away. In the centre of each façade is a semicircular-headed, ecclesiastical-looking window, that casts a dim horny light into a room above the gate, held of the City, at an annual rent of some £50, by Messrs. Childs, the bankers, as a sort of muniment-room for their old account-books. There is here preserved, among other costlier treasures of Mammon, the private account-book of Charles II. The original Child was a friend of Pepys, and is mentioned by him as quarrelling with the Duke of York on Admiralty matters. The Child who succeeded him was a friend of Pope, and all but led him into the South-Sea Bubble speculation.

Those affected, mean statues, with the crinkly drapery, were the work of a vain, half-crazed sculptor named John Bushnell, who died mad in 1701. Bushnell, who had visited Rome and Venice, executed Cowley’s monument in Westminster Abbey, and the statues of Charles I., Charles II., and Gresham, in the Old Exchange.

There is no extant historical account of Temple Bar in which the following passage from Strype (George I.) is not to be found embedded like a fossil; it is, in fact, nearly all we London topographers know of the early history of the Bar:— “Anciently,” says Strype, “there were only posts, rails, and a chain, such as are now in Holborn, Smithfield, and Whitechapel bars. Afterwards there was a house of timber erected across the street, with a narrow gateway and an entry on the south side of it under the house.” This structure is to be seen in the bird’s-eye view of London, 1601 (Elizabeth), and in Hollar’s seven-sheet map of London (Charles II.)

The date of the erection of the “wooden house” is not to be ascertained; but there is the house plain enough in a view of London to which Maitland affixes the date about 1560 (the second year of Elizabeth), so we may perhaps safely put it down as early as Edward VI. or Henry VIII. Indeed, if a certain scrap of history is correct—i.e., that bluff King Hal once threatened, if a certain Bill did not pass the Commons a little quicker, to fix the heads of several refractory M.P.s on the top of Temple Bar—we must suppose the old City toll-gate to be as old as the early Tudors.

After Simon de Montfort’s death, at the battle of Evesham, 1265, Prince Edward, afterwards Edward I., punished the rebellious Londoners, who had befriended Montfort, by taking away all their street chains and bars, and locking them up in the Tower.

The earliest known documentary and historical notice of Temple Bar is in 1327, the first year of Edward III.; and in the thirty-fourth year of the same reign we find, at an inquisition before the mayor, twelve witnesses deposing that the commonalty of the City had, time out of mind, had free ingress and egress from the City to Thames and from Thames to the City, through the great gate of the Templars situate within Temple Bar. This referred to some dispute about the right of way through the Temple, built in the reign of Henry I. In 1384 Richard II. granted a licence for paving Strand Street from Temple Bar to the Savoy, and collecting tolls to cover such charges.

The historical pageants that have taken place at Temple Bar deserve a notice, however short. On the 5th of November, 1422, the corpse of that brave and chivalrous king, the hero of Agincourt, Henry V., was borne to its rest at Westminster Abbey by the chief citizens and nobles, and every doorway from Southwark to Temple Bar had its mournful torch-bearer. In 1502–3 the hearse of Elizabeth of York, queen of Henry VII., halted at Temple Bar, on its way from the Tower to Westminster, and at the Bar the Abbots of Westminster and Bermondsey blessed the corpse, and the Earl of Derby and a large company of nobles joined the sable funeral throng. After sorrow came joy, and after joy sorrow—Ita vita. In the next reign poor Anne Boleyn, radiant with happiness and triumph, came through the Bar (May 31, 1534), on her way to the Tower, to be welcomed by the clamorous citizens, the day before her ill-starred coronation. Temple Bar on that occasion was new painted and repaired, and near it stood singing men and children—the Fleet Street conduit all the time running claret. The old gate figures more conspicuously the day before the coronation of that wondrous child, Edward VI. Two hogsheads of wine were then ladled out to the thirsty mob, and the gate at Temple Bar was painted with battlements and buttresses, richly hung with cloth of Arras, and all in a flutter with “fourteen standard flags.” There were eight French trumpeters blowing their best, besides “a pair of regals,” with children singing to the same. In September, 1553, when Edward’s cold-hearted half-sister, Mary Tudor, came through the City, according to ancient English custom, the day before her coronation, she did not ride on horseback, as Edward had done, but sat in a chariot covered with cloth of tissue and drawn by six horses draped with the same. Minstrels piped and trumpeted at Ludgate, and Temple Bar was newly painted and hung.

Old Temple Bar, the background to many historical scenes, figures in the rash rebellion of Sir Thomas Wyatt. When he had fought his way down Piccadilly to the Strand, Temple Bar was thrown open to him, or forced open by him; but when he had been repulsed at Ludgate he was hemmed in by cavalry at Temple Bar, where he surrendered. This foolish revolt led to the death of innocent Lady Jane Grey, and brought sixty brave gentlemen to the scaffold and the gallows.

On Elizabeth’s procession from the Tower before her coronation, January, 1559, Gogmagog the Albion, and Corineus the Briton, the two Guildhall giants, stood on the Bar; and on the south side there were chorister lads, one of whom, richly attired as a page, bade the queen farewell in the name of the whole City. In 1588, the glorious year that the Armada was defeated, Elizabeth passed through the Bar on her way to return thanks to God solemnly at St. Paul’s. The City waits stood in triumph on the roof of the gate. The Lord Mayor and Aldermen, in scarlet gowns, welcomed the queen and delivered up the City sword, then on her return they took horse and rode before her. The City Companies lined the north side of the street, the lawyers and gentlemen of the Inns of Court the south. Among the latter stood a person afterwards not altogether unknown, one Francis Bacon, who displayed his wit by saying to a friend, “Mark the courtiers! Those who bow first to the citizens are in debt; those who bow first to us are at law!”

In 1601, when the Earl of Essex made his insane attempt to rouse the City to rebellion, Temple Bar, we are told, was thrown open to him; but Ludgate being closed against him on his retreat from Cheapside, he came back by boat to Essex House, where he surrendered after a short and useless resistance.

King James made his first public entry into his royal City of London, with his consort and son Henry, upon the 15th of March, 1603–4. The king was mounted upon a white genet, ambling through the crowded streets under a canopy held by eight gentlemen of the Privy Chamber, as representatives of the Barons of the Cinque Ports, and passed under six arches of triumph, to take his leave at the Temple of Janus, erected for the occasion at Temple Bar. This edifice was fiftyseven feet high, proportioned in every respect like a temple.

In June, 1649 (the year of the execution of Charles), Cromwell and the Parliament dined at Guildhall in state, and the mayor, says Whitelocke, delivered up the sword to the Speaker, at Temple Bar, as he had before done to King Charles.

Philips, Milton’s nephew, who wrote the continuation of Baker’s Chronicle, describes the ceremony at Temple Bar on the proclamation of Charles II. The old oak gates being shut, the king-at-arms, with tabard on and trumpet before him, knocked and gravely demanded entrance. The Lord Mayor appointed some one to ask who knocked. The king-at-arms replied, that if they would open the wicket, and let the Lord Mayor come thither, he would to him deliver his message. The Lord Mayor then appeared, tremendous in crimson velvet gown, and on horseback, of all things in the world, the trumpets sounding as the gallant knight pricked forth to demand of the herald, who he was and what was his message. The bold herald, with his hat on, answered, regardless of Lindley Murray, who was yet unknown, “We are the herald-at-arms appointed and commanded by the Lords and Commons assembled in Parliament, and demand an entrance into the famous City of London, to proclaim Charles II. King of England, Scotland, France, and Ireland, and we expect your speedy answer to our demand.” An alderman then replied, “The message is accepted,” and the gates were thrown open.

When William III. came to see the City and the Lord Mayor’s Show in 1689, the City militia, holding lighted flambeaux, lined Fleet Street as far as Temple Bar.

The shadow of every monarch and popular hero since Charles II.’s time has rested for at least a passing moment at the old gateway. Queen Anne passed here to return thanks at St. Paul’s for the victory of Blenheim. Here Marlborough’s coach ominously broke down in 1714, when he returned in triumph from his voluntary exile.

George III. passed through Temple Bar, young and happy, the year after his coronation, and again when, old and almost broken-hearted, he returned thanks for his partial recovery from insanity; and in our time that graceless son of his, the Prince Regent, came through the Bar in 1814, to thank God at St. Paul’s for the downfall of Bonaparte.

On the 9th November, 1837, the accession of Queen Victoria, Sir Peter Laurie, picturesque in scarlet gown, Spanish hat, and black feathers, presented the City sword to the Queen at Temple Bar; Sir Peter was again ready with the same weapon in 1844, when the Queen opened the new Royal Exchange; but in 1851, when her Majesty once more visited the City, the old ceremony was (wrongly, we think) dispensed with.

At the funeral of Lord Nelson, the honoured corpse, followed by downcast old sailors, was met at the Bar by the Lord Mayor and the Corporation; and the Great Duke’s funeral car, and the long train of representative soldiers, rested at the Bar, which was hung with black velvet.

A few earlier associations connected with the present Bar deserve a moment or two’s recollection. On February 12th, when General Monk—”Honest George,” as his old Cromwellian soldiers used to call him—entered London, dislodged the “Rump” Parliament, and prepared for the Restoration of Charles II., bonfires were lit, the City bells rung, and London broke into a sudden flame of joy. Pepys, walking homeward about ten o’clock, says:— “The common joy was everywhere to be seen. The number of bonfires—there being fourteen between St. Dunstan’s and Temple Bar, and at Strand Bridge, east of Catherine Street, I could at one time tell thirty-one fires.”

On November 17, 1679, the year after the sham Popish Plot concocted by those matchless scoundrels, Titus Oates, an expelled naval. chaplain, and Bedloe; a swindler and thief, Temple Bar was made the spot for a great mob pilgrimage, on the anniversary of the accession of Queen Elizabeth, The ceremonial is supposed to have been organised by that restless plotter against a Popish succession, Lord Shaftesbury, and the gentlemen of the Green Ribbon Club, whose tavern, the “King’s Head,” was at the corner of Chancery Lane, opposite the Inner Temple gate. To scare and vex the Papists, the church bells began to clash out as early as three o’clock on the morning of that dangerous day. At dusk the procession of several thousand half-crazed torch-bearers started from Moorgate, along Bishopsgate Street, and down Houndsditch and Aldgate (passing Shaftesbury’s house imagine the roar of the monster mob, the wave of torches, and the fiery fountains of squibs at that point!), then through Leadenhall Street and Cornhill, by the Royal Exchange, along Cheapside and on to Temple Bar, where the bonfire awaited the puppets. In a torrent of fire the noisy Protestants passed through the exulting City, making the Papists cower and shudder in their garrets and cellars, and before the flaming deluge opened a storm of shouting people. This procession consisted of fifteen groups of priests, Jesuits, and friars, two following a man on a horse, holding up before him a dummy, dressed to represent Sir Edmondbury Godfrey, a Protestant justice and wood merchant, supposed to have been murdered by Roman Catholics at Somerset House. It was attended by a body-guard of 150 swordbearers and a man roaring a political cry of the time through a brazen speaking-trumpet. The great bonfire was built up mountain high opposite the Inner Temple gate. Some zealous Protestants, by pre-arrangement, had crowned the prim and meagre statue of Elizabeth (still on the east side of the Bar) with a wreath of gilt laurel, and placed under her hand (that now points to Child’s Bank) a golden glistening shield, with the motto, “The Protestant Religion and Magna Charta,” inscribed upon it. Several lighted torches were stuck before her niche. Lastly, amidst a fiery shower of squibs from every door and window, the Pope and his companions were toppled into the huge bonfire, with shouts that reached almost to Charing Cross.

These mischievous processions were continued till the reign of George I. There was to have been a magnificent one on November 17, 1711, when the Whigs were dreading the contemplated peace with the French and the return of Marlborough. But the Tories, declaring that the Kit-Cat Club was urging the mob to destroy the house of Harley, the Minister, and to tear him to pieces, seized on the wax figures in Drury Lane, and forbade the ceremony.

As early as two years after the Restoration, Sir Balthazar Gerbier, a restless architectural quack and adventurer of those days, wrote a pamphlet proposing a sumptuous gate at Temple Bar, and the levelling of the Fleet Valley. After the Great Fire Charles II. himself hurried the erection of the Bar, and promised money to carry out the work. During the Great Fire, Temple Bar was one of the stations for constables, 100 firemen, and 30 soldiers.

The Rye-House Plot brought the first trophy to the Golgotha of the Bar, in 1684, twelve years after its erection. Sir Thomas Armstrong was deep in the scheme. If the discreditable witnesses examined against Lord William Russell are to be believed, a plot had been concocted by a few desperate men to assassinate “the Blackbird and the Goldfinch “—as the conspirators called the King and the Duke of York—as they were in their coach on their way from Newmarket to London. This plan seems to have been the suggestion of Rumbold, a maltster, who lived in a lonely moated farmhouse, called Rye House, about eighteen miles from London, near the river Ware, close to a by-road that leads from Bishop Stortford to Hoddesdon. Charles II. had a violent hatred to Armstrong, who had been his Gentleman of the Horse, and was supposed to have incited his illegitimate son, the Duke of Monmouth, to rebellion. Sir Thomas was hanged at Tyburn. After the body had hung half an hour, the hangman cut it down, stripped it, lopped off the head, threw the heart into a fire, and divided, the body into four parts. The fore-quarter (afterbeing boiled in pitch at Newgate) was set on Temple Bar, the head was placed on Westminster Hall, and the rest of the body was sent to Stafford, which town Sir Thomas represented in Parliament.

Eleven years after, the heads of two more traitors —this time conspirators against William III.— joined the relic of Armstrong. Sir John Friend was a rich brewer at Aldgate. Parkyns was an old Warwickshire county gentleman. The plotters had several plans. One was to attack Kensington Palace at night, scale the outer wall, and storm or fire the building; another was to kill William on a Sunday, as he drove from Kensington to the chapel at St. James’s Palace. The murderers agreed to assemble near where Apsley House now standsJust as the royal coach passed from Hyde Park across to the Green Park, thirty conspirators agreed to fall on the twenty-five guards, and butcher the king before he could leap out of his carriageThese two Jacobite gentlemen died bravely, proclaiming their entire loyalty to King James and the “Prince of Wales.”

The unfortunate gentlemen who took a moody pleasure in drinking “the squeezing of the rotten Orange” had long passed on their doleful journey from Newgate to Tyburn before the ghastly procession of the brave and unlucky men of the rising, in 1715 began its mournful march.

Sir Bernard Burke mentions a tradition that the head of the young Earl of Derwentwater was exposed on Temple Bar in 1716, and that his wife drove in a cart under the arch while a man hired, for the purpose threw down to her the beloved head from the parapet above. But the story is entirely untrue, and is only a version of the way in which the head of Sir Thomas More was removed by his son-in-law and daughter from London Bridge, where that cruel tyrant Henry VIII. had placed it. Some years ago, when the Earl of Derwentwater’s coffin was found in the family vault, the head was lying safe with the body. In 1716 there was, however, a traitor’s head spiked on the Bar—that of Colonel John Oxburgh, the victim of mistaken fidelity to a bad cause. He was a brave Lancashire gentleman, who had surrendered with his forces at Preston. He displayed signal courage and resignation in prison, forgetting himself to comfort others.

The next victim was Mr. Christopher Layer, a young Norfolk man and a Jacobite barrister, living in Southampton Buildings, Chancery Lane. He plunged deeply into the Atterbury Plot of 1722, and, with Lords North and Grey, enlisted men, hired officers, and, taking advantage of the universal misery caused by the bursting ‘of the South Sea Bubble, planned a general rising against George I. The scheme was, with four distinct bodies of Jacobites, to seize the Tower and the Bank, to arrest the king and the prince, and capture or kill Lord Cadogan, one of the Ministers. At the trial it was proved that Layer had been over to Rome, and had seen the Pretender, who, by proxy, had stood godfather to his child. Troops were to be sent from France; barricades were to be thrown up all over London. The Jacobites had calculated that the Government had only 14,000 men to meet them— 3,000 of these would be wanted to guard London, 3,000 for Scotland, and 2,000 for the garrisons. The original design had been to take advantage of the king’s departure for Hanover, and, in the words of one of the conspirators, the Jacobites were fully convinced that “they should walk King George out before Lady-day.” Layer was hanged at Tyburn, and his head fixed upon Temple Bar.

Years after, one stormy night in 1753, the rebel’s skull blew down, and was picked up by a nonjuring attorney, named Pierce, who preserved it as a relic of the Jacobite martyr. It is said that Dr. Richard Rawlinson, an eminent antiquary, obtained what he thought was Layer’s head, and desired in his will that it should be placed in his right hand when he was buried. Another version of the story is, that a spurious skull was foisted upon Rawlinson, who died happy in the possession of the doubtful treasure. Rawlinson was bantered by Addison for his pedantry, in one of the Tatlers, and was praised by Dr. Johnson for his learning.

The 1745 rebellion brought the heads of fresh victims to the Bar, and this was the last triumph of barbarous justice. Colonel Francis Townley’s was the sixth head; Fletcher’s (his fellow-officer), the seventh and last. The Earls of Kilmarnock and Cromarty, Lord Balmerino, and thirty-seven other rebels (thirty-six of them having been captured in Carlisle) were tried the same session. Townley was a man of about fifty-four years of age, nephew of Mr. Townley of Townley Hall, in Lancashire (the “Townley Marbles” family), who had been tried and acquitted in 1725, though many of his men were found guilty and executed. The nephew had gone over to France in 1727, and obtained a commission from the French king, whom he served for fifteen years, being at the siege of Philipsburg, and close to the Duke of Berwick when that general’s head was shot off. About 1740, Townley stole over to, England to see his friends and to plot against the Hanover family; and as soon as the rebels came into England, he met them between Lancaster and Preston, and came with them to Manchester. At the trial Roger M’Donald, an officer’s servant, deposed to seeing Townley on the retreat from Derby, and between Lancaster and Preston riding at the head of the Manchester regiment on a bay horse. He had a white cockade in his hat and wore a plaid sash.

George Fletcher, who was tried at the same time as Townley, was a rash young chapman, who managed his widowed mother’s provision shop “at Salford, just over the bridge in Manchester.” His mother had begged him on her knees to keep out of the rebellion, even offering him a thousand pounds for his own pocket, if he would stay at home. He bought a captain’s commission of Murray, the Pretender’s secretary, for fifty pounds; wore the smart white cockade and a Highland plaid sash lined with white silk; and headed the very first captain’s guard mounted for the Pretender at Carlisle. A Manchester man deposed to seeing at the Exchange a sergeant, with a drum, beating up for volunteers for the Manchester regiment.

Fletcher, Townley, and seven other unfortunate Jacobites were hanged on Kennington Common. Before the carts drove away, the men flung their prayer-books, written speeches, and gold-laced hats gaily to the crowd. Mr. James (Jemmy) Dawson, the hero of Shenstone’s touching ballad, was one of the nine. As soon as they were dead the hangman cut down the bodies, disembowelled, beheaded, and quartered them, throwing the hearts into the fire. A monster—a fighting-man of the day, named Buckhorse—is said to have actually eaten a piece of Townley’s flesh, to show his loyalty. Before the ghastly scene was over, the heart of one unhappy spectator had already broken. The lady to whom James Dawson was engaged to be married followed the rebels to the common, and even came near enough to see, with pallid face, the fire kindling, the axe, the coffins, and all the other dreadful preparations. She bore up bravely, until she heard her lover was no more. Then she drew her head back into the coach, and crying out, “My dear, I follow thee—I follow thee! Lord God, receive our souls, I pray Thee!” fell on the neck of a companion and expired. Mr. Dawson had behaved gallantly in prison, saying, “He did not care if they put a ton weight of iron upon him, it would not daunt him.”

A curious old print of 1746, full of vulgar triumph, reproduces a “Temple Bar, the City Golgotha,” representing the Bar with three heads on the top of it, spiked on long iron rods. The devil looks down in ribald triumph from above, and waves a rebel banner, on which, besides three coffins and a crown, is the motto, “A crown or a grave.” Underneath are written these patriotic but doggrel lines:—

“Observe the banner which would all enslave,
Which misled traytors did so proudly wave;
The devil seems the project to surprise;
A fiend confused from off the trophy flies.
While trembling rebels at the fabric gaze,
And dread their fate with horror and amaze,
Let Britain’s sons the emblematic view,
And plainly see what is rebellion’s due.”

The heads of Fletcher and Townley were put on the Bar August 12, 1746. On August 15th Horace Walpole, writing to a friend, says he had just been roaming in the City, and “passed under the new heads on Temple Bar, where people make a trade of letting spy-glasses at a halfpenny a look.” According to Mr. J. T. Smith, an old man living in 1825 remembered, the last heads on Temple Bar being visible through a telescope across the space between the Bar and Leicester Fields.

Between two and three A.M., on the morning of January 20, 1766, a mysterious man was arrested by the watch as he was discharging, by the dim light, musket bullets at the two heads then remaining upon Temple Bar. On being questioned by the puzzled magistrate, he affected a disorder in his senses, and craftily declared that the patriotic reason for his eccentric conduct was his strong attachment to the present Government, and that he thought it not sufficient that a traitor should merely suffer death; that this provoked his indignation, and it had been his constant practice for three nights past to amuse himself in the same manner. “And it is much to be feared,” says the past record of the event, “that the man is a near relation to one of the unhappy sufferers.” Upon searching this very suspicious marksman, about fifty musket bullets were found on him, wrapped up in a paper on which was written the motto, “Eripuit ille vitam.”

After this, history leaves the heads of the unhappy Jacobites — those lips that love had kissed, those: cheeks children had patted—to moulder on in the sun and in the rain, till the last day of March, 1772,. when one of them (Townley or Fletcher) fell. The last stormy gust of March threw it down, and a short time after a strong wind blew down the other; and against the sky no more relics remained of a barbarous and unchristian revenge. In April, 1773, Boswell, whom we all despise and all like,. dined at courtly Mr. Beauclerk’s with Dr. Johnson, Lord Charlemont (Hogarth’s friend), Sir Joshua Reynolds, and other members of the literaryclub, in Gerrard Street, Soho, it being the awful evening when Boswell was to be balloted forThe conversation turned on the new and commendable practice of erecting monuments to great men in St. Paul’s. The Doctor observed: “I remember once being with Goldsmith in Westminster Abbey. Whilst we stood at Poet’s Corner, I said to him,—

“Forsitan et nostrum nomen miscebitur istis.”—Ovid.
When we got to Temple Bar he stopped me, and pointing to the heads upon it, slily whispered,—
“Forsitan et nostrum nomen miscebitur istis.”

This anecdote, so full of clever, arch wit, is sufficient to endear the old gateway to all lovers of Johnson and of Goldsmith.

According to Mr. Timbs, in his “London and Westminster,” Mrs. Black, the wife of the editor of the Morning Chronicle, when asked if she remembered any heads on Temple Bar, used to reply, in her brusque, hearty way, “Boys, I recollect the scene well! I have seen on that Temple Bar, about which you ask, two human heads—real heads— traitors’ heads—spiked on iron poles. There were two; I saw one fall (March 31, 1772). Women shrieked as it fell; men, as I have heard, shrieked. One woman near me fainted. Yes, boys, I recollect seeing human heads upon Temple Bar.”

The cruel-looking spikes were removed early in the present century. The panelled oak gates have often been renewed, though certainly shutting them too often never wore them out.

As early as 1790 Alderman Pickett (who built the St. Clement’s arch), with other subversive reformers, tried to pull down Temple Bar. It was pronounced unworthy of form, of no antiquity, an ambuscade for pickpockets, and a record of only the dark and crimson pages of history.

A writer in the Gentleman’s Magazine, in 1813; chronicling the clearance away of some hovels encroaching upon the building, says: “It will not be surprising if certain amateurs, busy in improving the architectural concerns of the City, should at length request of their brethren to allow the Bar or grand gate of entrance into the City of London to stand, after they have so repeatedly sought to obtain its destruction.” In 1852 a proposal for its repair and restoration was defeated in the Common Council; and twelve months later, a number of bankers, merchants, and traders set their hands to a petition for its removal altogether, as serving no practical purpose, as it impeded ventilation and retarded improvements. Since then Mr. Heywood has proposed to make a circus at Temple Bar, leaving the archway in the centre; and Mr. W. Burges, the architect, suggested a new arch in keeping with the new Law Courts opposite.

It is a singular fact that the “Parentalia,” a chronicle of Wren’s works written by Wren’s clever son, contains hardly anything about Temple Bar. According to Mr Noble, the Wren manuscripts in the British Museum, Wren’s ledger in the Bodleian, and the Record Office documents, are equally silent; but from a folio at the Guildhall, entitled “Expenses of Public Buildings after the Great Fire,” it would appear that the Bar cost altogether £1,397 10s.; Bushnell, the sculptor, receiving out of this sum £480 for his four stone monarchs. The mason was John Marshall, who carved the pedestal of the statue of Charles I. at Charing Cross and worked on the Monument in Fish Street Hill. In 1636 Inigo Jones had designed a new arch, the plan of which still exists. Wren, it is said, took his design of the Bar from an old temple at Rome.

The old Bar is now a mere piece of useless and disused armour. Once a protection, then an ornament, it has now become an obstruction—the too narrow neck of a large decanter—a bone in the throat of Fleet Street. Yet still we have a lingering fondness for the old barrier that we have seen draped in black for a dead hero and glittering with gold in honour of a young bride. We have shared the sunshine that brightened it and the gloom that has darkened it, and we feel for it a species of friendship, in which it mutely shares. To us there seems to be a dignity in its dirt and pathos in the mud that bespatters its patient old face, as, like a sturdy fortress, it holds out against all its enemies, and Charles I. and II., and Elizabeth and James I. keep a bright look-out day and night for all attacks. Nevertheless, it must go in time, we fear. Poor old Temple Bar, we shall miss you when you are gone!

Citation information: Old and New London: Volume 1 – The Underground Map
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Source: Hungerford Stairs


Roy Batham   
Added: 7 Jan 2022 07:17 GMT   

Smithy in Longacre
John Burris 1802-1848 Listed 1841 census as Burroughs was a blacksmith, address just given as Longacre.

Source: Batham/Wiseman - Family Tree


Reg Carr   
Added: 10 Feb 2021 12:11 GMT   

Campbellite Meeting
In 1848 the Campbellites (Disciples of Christ) met in Elstree Street, where their congregation was presided over by a pastor named John Black. Their appointed evangelist at the time was called David King, who later became the Editor of the British Millennial Harbinger. The meeting room was visited in July 1848 by Dr John Thomas, who spoke there twice on his two-year ’mission’ to Britain.

Jeff Owen   
Added: 20 Mar 2021 16:18 GMT   

Owen’s School
Owen Street is the site of Owen’s Boys’ School. The last school was built in 1881 and was demolished in the early 1990s to make way for the development which stand there today. It was a “Direct Grant” grammar school and was founded in 1613 by Dame Alice Owen. What is now “Owen’s Fields” was the playground between the old school and the new girls’ school (known then as “Dames Alice Owen’s School” or simply “DAOS”). The boys’ school had the top two floors of that building for their science labs. The school moved to Potters Bar in Hertfordshire in 1971 and is now one of the top State comprehensive schools in the country. The old building remained in use as an accountancy college and taxi-drivers’ “knowledge” school until it was demolished. The new building is now part of City and Islington College. Owen’s was a fine school. I should know because I attended there from 1961 to 1968.


Scott Hatton   
Added: 11 Sep 2020 19:47 GMT   

Millions Of Rats In Busy London
The Daily Mail on 14 April 1903 reported "MILLIONS OF RATS IN BUSY LONDON"

A rat plague, unprecedented in the annals of London, has broken out on the north side of the Strand. The streets principally infested are Catherine street, Drury lane, Blackmore street, Clare Market and Russell street. Something akin to a reign of terror prevails among the inhabitants after nightfall. Women refuse to pass along Blackmore street and the lower parts of Stanhope street after dusk, for droves of rats perambulate the roadways and pavements, and may be seen running along the window ledges of the empty houses awaiting demolition by the County Council in the Strand to Holborn improvement scheme.

The rats, indeed, have appeared in almost-incredible numbers. "There are millions of them," said one shopkeeper, and his statement was supported by other residents. The unwelcome visitors have been evicted from their old haunts by the County Council housebreakers, and are now busily in search of new homes. The Gaiety Restaurant has been the greatest sufferer. Rats have invaded the premises in such force that the managers have had to close the large dining room on the first floor and the grill rooms on the ground floor and in the basement. Those three spacious halls which have witnessed many as semblages of theatre-goers are now qui:e deserted. Behind the wainscot of the bandstand in the grillroom is a large mound of linen shreds. This represents 1728 serviettes carried theee by the rats.

In the bar the removal of a panel disclosed the astonishing fact that the rats have dragged for a distance of seven or eight yards some thirty or forty beer and wine bottles and stacked them in such a fashion as to make comfortable sleeping places. Mr Williams. the manager of the restaurant, estimates that the rats have destroyed L200 worth of linen. Formerly the Gaiety Restaurant dined 2000 persons daily; no business whatever is now done in this direction.

Bruce McTavish   
Added: 11 Mar 2021 11:37 GMT   

Kennington Road
Lambeth North station was opened as Kennington Road and then Westminster Bridge Road before settling on its final name. It has a wonderful Leslie Green design.

Born here
Bernard Miller   
Added: 12 Apr 2022 17:36 GMT   

My mother and her sister were born at 9 Windsor Terrace
My mother, Millie Haring (later Miller) and her sister Yetta Haring (later Freedman) were born here in 1922 and 1923. With their parents and older brother and sister, they lived in two rooms until they moved to Stoke Newington in 1929. She always said there were six rooms, six families, a shared sink on the first floor landing and a toilet in the backyard.

Added: 28 Feb 2023 18:09 GMT   

6 Elia Street
When I was young I lived in 6 Elia Street. At the end of the garden there was a garage owned by Initial Laundries which ran from an access in Quick Street all the way up to the back of our garden. The fire exit to the garage was a window leading into our garden. 6 Elia Street was owned by Initial Laundry.

Added: 17 May 2021 09:42 GMT   

Blackfriars (1959 - 1965)
I lived in Upper Ground from 1959 to 1964 I was 6 years old my parents Vince and Kitty run the Pub The Angel on the corner of Upper Ground and Bodies Bridge. I remember the ceiling of the cellar was very low and almost stretched the length of Bodies Bridge. The underground trains run directly underneath the pub. If you were down in the cellar when a train was coming it was quite frightening

Added: 21 May 2021 23:07 GMT   

What is, or was, Bodies Bridge?

Lived here
Richard Roques   
Added: 21 Jan 2021 16:53 GMT   

Buckingham Street residents
Here in Buckingham Street lived Samuel Pepys the diarist, Charles Dickens and Rudyard Kipling

Jude Allen   
Added: 29 Jul 2021 07:53 GMT   

Bra top
I jave a jewelled item of clothong worn by a revie girl.
It is red with diamante straps. Inside it jas a label Bermans Revue 16 Orange Street but I cannot find any info online about the revue only that 16 Orange Street used to be a theatre. Does any one know about the revue. I would be intesrested to imagine the wearer of the article and her London life.

Added: 18 Mar 2021 13:08 GMT   

White Conduit Street, N1
My mum, Rosina Wade of the Wade and Hannam family in the area of Chapel Street and Parkfield Street, bought her first “costume” at S Cohen’s in White Conduit Street. Would have probably been about 1936 or thereabouts. She said that he was a small man but an expert tailor. I hope that Islington Council preserve the shop front as it’s a piece of history of the area. Mum used to get her high heel shoes from an Italian shoe shop in Chapel Street. She had size 2 feet and they would let her know when a new consignment of size 2 shoes were in. I think she was a very good customer. She worked at Killingbacks artificial flower maker in Northampton Square and later at the Halifax bombers factory north of Edgware where she was a riveter.

Born here
Added: 31 Dec 2021 00:54 GMT   

Burdett Street, SE1
I was on 2nd July 1952, in Burdett chambers (which is also known as Burdett buildings)on Burdett street



Added: 31 Mar 2023 15:07 GMT   

BlackJack Playground
Emslie Horniman’s Pleasance was my favourite childhood park.I went to St Mary’s Catholic school, East Row from Nursery all the way through to Year 6 before Secondary School and I was taken here to play most days. There was a centre piece flower bed in the Voysey Garden surrounded by a pond which my classmates and I used to jump over when no one was looking. The Black jack playground was the go to playground for our sports days and my every day shortcut to get close to the half penny steps foot bridge via Kensal Road. There was also a shop where we could buy ice lollies on hot summer days.The Southern Row side of the Park was filled with pebbles which used to be so fun to walk through as a child, I used to walk through the deepness of the pebbles to get to Bosworth Road or east towards Hornimans Adventure Park.


Added: 29 Mar 2023 17:31 GMT   

Auction of the paper stock of Janssen and Roberts
A broadside advertisement reads: "By auction, to be sold on Thursday next being the 16th of this present July, the remainder of the stock in partnership between Janssen and Roberts, at their late dwelling-house in Dean’s Court, the south side of St. Pauls, consisting of Genoa papers according to the particulars underneath." The date in the ESTC record is purely speculative; July 16th was a Thursday in many years during the 18th century; 1750 is only one possibility. Extensive searching has found no other record of the partners or the auction.

Source: ESTC - Search Results

Born here
Added: 27 Mar 2023 18:28 GMT   

Nower Hill, HA5

Added: 26 Mar 2023 14:50 GMT   

Albert Mews
It is not a gargoyle over the entrance arch to Albert Mews, it is a likeness of Prince Albert himself.

Christine D Elliott   
Added: 20 Mar 2023 15:52 GMT   

The Blute Family
My grandparents, Frederick William Blute & Alice Elizabeth Blute nee: Warnham lived at 89 Blockhouse Street Deptford from around 1917.They had six children. 1. Alice Maragret Blute (my mother) 2. Frederick William Blute 3. Charles Adrian Blute 4. Violet Lillian Blute 5. Donald Blute 6. Stanley Vincent Blute (Lived 15 months). I lived there with my family from 1954 (Birth) until 1965 when we were re-housed for regeneration to the area.
I attended Ilderton Road School.
Very happy memories of that time.


Pearl Foster   
Added: 20 Mar 2023 12:22 GMT   

Dukes Place, EC3A
Until his death in 1767, Daniel Nunes de Lara worked from his home in Dukes Street as a Pastry Cook. It was not until much later the street was renamed Dukes Place. Daniel and his family attended the nearby Bevis Marks synagogue for Sephardic Jews. The Ashkenazi Great Synagogue was established in Duke Street, which meant Daniel’s business perfectly situated for his occupation as it allowed him to cater for both congregations.

Dr Paul Flewers   
Added: 9 Mar 2023 18:12 GMT   

Some Brief Notes on Hawthorne Close / Hawthorne Street
My great-grandparents lived in the last house on the south side of Hawthorne Street, no 13, and my grandmother Alice Knopp and her brothers and sisters grew up there. Alice Knopp married Charles Flewers, from nearby Hayling Road, and moved to Richmond, Surrey, where I was born. Leonard Knopp married Esther Gutenberg and lived there until the street was demolished in the mid-1960s, moving on to Tottenham. Uncle Len worked in the fur trade, then ran a pet shop in, I think, the Kingsland Road.

From the back garden, one could see the almshouses in the Balls Pond Road. There was an ink factory at the end of the street, which I recall as rather malodorous.


Added: 7 Mar 2023 17:14 GMT   

Andover Road, N7 (1939 - 1957)
My aunt, Doris nee Curtis (aka Jo) and her husband John Hawkins (aka Jack) ran a small general stores at 92 Andover Road (N7). I have found details in the 1939 register but don’t know how long before that it was opened.He died in 1957. In the 1939 register he is noted as being an ARP warden for Islington warden


Alsatia Alsatia was the name given to an area lying north of the River Thames covered by the Whitefriars monastery.
City Temple The City Temple is a Nonconformist church on Holborn Viaduct.
Fleet Market The Fleet Market was a market erected in 1736 on the newly culverted River Fleet.
Houghton Street (1906) A greengrocer’s on the corner of Houghton Street and Clare Market (behind The Strand) in 1906 just before demolition.
Lisle’s Tennis Court Lisle’s Tennis Court was a building off Portugal Street in Lincoln’s Inn Fields in London.
Old and New London: Temple Bar Temple Bar was rebuilt by Sir Christopher Wren, in 1670–72.
St Andrew The Church of St Andrew, Holborn stands within the Ward of Farringdon Without.
Staple Inn Staple Inn is London’s only surviving sixteenth-century domestic building, situated on the south side of High Holborn.
Temple Bar Temple Bar is the point in London where Fleet Street, City of London, becomes the Strand, Westminster, and where the City of London traditionally erected a barrier to regulate trade into the city.
Thavie’s Inn Thavie’s Inn was a former Inn of Chancery, associated with Lincoln’s Inn, established at Holborn, near the site of the present side street and office block still known as Thavies Inn Buildings.
The 1860s map of London "Stanford’s Library Map of London and its Suburbs" was published in 1862
The Temple The Temple is one of the main legal districts in London and a notable centre for English law.
Weston’s Music Hall Weston’s Music Hall was a music hall and theatre that opened in 1857. In 1906, the theatre became known as the Holborn Empire.

Africa House, WC2A Residential block
Africa House, WC2B Africa House is a block on Kingsway.
Aldwych House, WC2B Aldwych House is located on Aldwych.
Aldwych, WC2B The name Aldwych derives from the Old English eald and wic meaning ’old trading town’ or ’old marketplace’; the name was later applied to the street and district.
Andrews Crosse, EC4A Andrews Crosse stood on the site of the courtyard of the former Andrews Crosse Inn.
Arundel House, WC2R Arundel House is a block on Temple Place.
Arundel Street, WC2R Arundel Street runs from the Strand to Temple Place.
Ashentree Court, EC4Y Ashentree Court was named after the ashen trees formerly located here at the Whitefriars’ monastery.
Australia House, WC2B Australia House can be found on Strand.
Barnard’s Inn, EC4A Barnard’s Inn lies near Holborn Circus.
Bartlett’s Buildings, EC4A Bartlett’s Buildings was the name of a street situated off of Holborn Circus
Bell Yard, EC4A Bell Yard is a small lane off the Strand where the Bell hostel once stood.
Bishop’s Court, WC2A Bishop’s Court lies off Chancery Lane.
Blackfriars Bridge, EC4V Blackfriars Bridge is one of the streets of London in the EC4V postal area.
Blackfriars House, EC4V Blackfriars House is a block on New Bridge Street.
Blackmoor Street, WC2B Blackmoor Street was in the Drury Lane slum.
Bolt Court, EC4A Bolt Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Bouverie House, EC4 Bouverie House is a block on Fleet Street.
Bouverie House, EC4A Bouverie House is a block on Fleet Street.
Bouverie Street, EC4Y Bouverie Street is named for the Pleydell-Bouveries, Earls of Radnor, who were landowners in this area.
Breams Buildings, EC4A Breams Buildings is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Brettenham House, WC2R Brettenham House is a block on Savoy Street.
Brick Court, EC4Y Brick Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Bride Court, EC4Y Bride Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Bride Lane, EC4Y Bride Lane is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Bridewell Place, EC4V Bridewell Place is one of the streets of London in the EC4V postal area.
Bruce House, WC2B Bruce House is sited on Kemble Street.
Bull Inn Court, WC2R Bull Inn Court is one of the streets of London in the WC2R postal area.
Carey Street, WC2A Carey Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Carmelite House, EC4Y Carmelite House is sited on Victoria Embankment.
Carmelite Street, EC4Y Carmelite Street continues south from Whitefriars Street, which itself is just off Fleet Street.
Carpmael Building, EC4Y Carpmael Building is a block on Crown Office Row.
Catherine Street, WC2B Catherine Street runs from Russell Street in the north to Aldwych in the south.
Chancery House, WC2A Chancery House is a block on Chancery Lane.
Chancery Lane, WC2A Chancery Lane has formed the western boundary of the City of London since 1994, having previously been divided between the London boroughs of Westminster and Camden.
Chichester Rents, WC2A Chichester Rents is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Clare Market, WC2A Clare Market is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Clement House, WC2B Clement House is located on Aldwych.
Clement House, WC2R Clement House is a block on Strand.
Clement’s Inn, WC2R Clement’s Inn is a road in the WC2R postcode area
Cliffords Inn Passage, EC4Y Cliffords Inn Passage is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Cliffords Inn, EC4A Cliffords Inn is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Columbia House, WC2B Columbia House is a block on Aldwych.
Connaught House, WC2A Connaught House can be found on Aldwych.
Connaught House, WC2B Connaught House is located on Aldwych.
Cowdray House, WC2A Cowdray House is a building on Portugal Street.
Crane Court, EC4Y Crane Court lay beside the Two Crane Inn Tavern.
Crown Office Row, EC4Y Crown Office Row is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Crystal Wharf, WC2B A street within the WC2B postcode
Cursitor Street, EC4A Cursitor Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Daniel House, EC4A Daniel House is a block on Fleet Street.
Devereux Court, EC4Y Devereux Court lies on the south side of the Strand, opposite the Law Courts.
Devereux Court, WC2R Devereux Court is a location in London.
Doctor Johnsons Buildings, EC4Y Doctor Johnsons Buildings is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Dorset Rise, EC4Y Dorset Rise is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Dr Johnson’s House, EC4A Dr Johnson’s House is a block on Gough Square.
Dyer’s Buildings, EC1N This is a street in the EC1N postcode area
East Harding Street, EC4A This is a street in the EC4A postcode area
Essex Court, EC4Y Essex Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Essex Street, EC4Y Essex Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2R postal area.
Essex Street, WC2R Essex Street is a location in London.
Exchange Court, WC2R Exchange Court is one of the streets of London in the WC2R postal area.
Falcon Court, EC4Y Falcon Court is a courtyard off the south side of Fleet Street between Chancery Lane and Fetter Lane.
Farringdon Road, EC1A Farringdon Road is one of the streets of London in the EC1A postal area.
Farringdon Road, EC4V Farringdon Road is a road in the EC4A postcode area
Farringdon Street, EC1A The building of Farringdon Street is considered one of the greatest urban engineering achievements of the 19th century.
Farringdon Street, EC4M Farringdon Street was constructed over the Fleet river.
Fetter Lane, EC4A Fetter Lane is corrupted from ’Fautre’ which was the name for a spear rest - spears were made close by.
Fitz Eylwin House, EC1A Fitz Eylwin House is a block on Holborn Viaduct.
Fleet Street, EC4A Fleet Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Fleet Street, EC4Y Fleet Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Fleetbank House, EC4Y Fleetbank House is located on Salisbury Square.
Fleur De Lis Court, EC4A Fleur De Lis Court was situated off Fetter Lane.
Fountain Court, EC4Y Fountain Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Francis Taylor Building, EC4Y Francis Taylor Building is a block on Kings Bench Walk.
Furnival Street, EC4A Furnival Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Garden Court, EC4Y Garden Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Gate Street, WC2A Gate Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Gibraltar House, WC2R Gibraltar House is a block on Strand.
Gladstone House, WC2R Gladstone House is a block on Arundel Street.
Gough Square, EC4A Gough Square is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Great New Street, EC4A Great New Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Great Turnstile, WC1V This is a street in the WC1V postcode area
Gunpowder Square, EC4A Gunpowder Square is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Hamilton House, EC4Y Hamilton House is a block on Temple Avenue.
Harcourt Buildings, EC4Y Harcourt Buildings is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Hardwicke Building, WC2A Hardwicke Building is a block on Hardwicke Building.
Hare Court, EC4Y Hare Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Hare Place, EC4Y Hare Place is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Harmsworth House, EC4Y Harmsworth House lies near the Inner Temple
Harp House, EC4A Harp House is a block on Farringdon Street.
Hat and Mitre Court, EC4Y Hat and Mitre Court is a road in the EC1M postcode area
High Holborn, WC1V High Holborn was part of the old road from Newgate and the Tower to the gallows at Tyburn.
Hill House, EC4A Hill House is sited on Little New Street.
Hind Court, EC4Y Hind Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Holborn Circus, EC1N Holborn Circus is a junction of five highways in the City of London, on the boundary between Holborn, Hatton Garden and Smithfield.
Holborn Viaduct, EC1A Holborn Viaduct is a road bridge in London and the name of the street which crosses it.
Holborn, EC1N Holborn commemorates the River Fleet, also known as the Holbourne stream.
Hood Court, EC4Y Hood Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Houghton Square, WC2B Houghton Square is a road in the SW9 postcode area
Houghton Street, WC2A Houghton Street is a street which has been ’demoted’ over time.
Howard Street, WC2R Howard Street ran from Surrey Street to Arundel Street until 1974.
Imperial House, WC2B Imperial House is a block on Kingsway.
India House, WC2B India House is a block on Aldwych.
India Place, WC2B India Place is a small alleyway leading from Aldwych.
Inner Temple Lane, EC4Y Inner Temple Lane is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
John Carpenter House, EC4Y John Carpenter House is a block on John Carpenter Street.
John Carpenter Street, EC4Y John Carpenter was town clerk of the City of London in the fifteenth century, and founder of the City of London School.
Kean Street, WC2B Kean Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2B postal area.
Keeley Street, WC2B Keeley Street has a dual history
Kemble Street, WC2B Kemble Street is a road in the WC2B postcode area
Kildare House, EC4Y Kildare House can be found on Dorset Rise.
King’s Bench Walk Temple, EC4Y A street within the EC4Y postcode
King’s Bench Walk, EC4Y King?s Bench Walk is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
King’s Building, WC2R King’s Building is a block on Strand.
Kings Bench Walk, EC4Y Kings Bench Walk is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Kingsway, WC2A Kingsway is one of the streets of London in the WC2B postal area.
Kingsway, WC2B This is a street in the WC2A postcode area
Lakatos Building, WC2A Lakatos Building is a block on Portugal Street.
Lamb Building, EC4Y Lamb Building is a block on Pump Court.
Lancaster Place, WC2R Lancaster Place is one of the streets of London in the WC2E postal area.
Lincoln’s Inn Fields, WC2A Lincoln’s Inn Fields is the largest public square in London, laid out in the 1630s under the initiative of the speculative builder William Newton.
Lionel Robbins Building, WC2A Lionel Robbins Building is sited on Portugal Street.
Little Essex Street, EC4Y Little Essex Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2R postal area.
Little New Street, EC4A Little New Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Little Turnstile, WC2A Little Turnstile is one of the streets of London in the WC1V postal area.
London Silver Vaults, WC1V London Silver Vaults is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Ludgate Circus, EC4M Ludgate Circus is a junction in the City of London where Farringdon Street and New Bridge Street cross Fleet Street/Ludgate Hill.
Ludgate House, EC4M Ludgate House is located on Fleet Street.
Magpie Alley, EC4Y Magpie Alley marks the position occupied by the dorter (dormitory) of the Friary of the Blessed Virgin of Mount Carmel, commonly called the Whitefriars Monastery
Maltravers Street, WC2R Maltravers Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2R postal area.
Masters House Temple Church, EC4Y Masters House Temple Church is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Melbourne Place, WC2B Melbourne Place is a road in the WC2B postcode area
Middle Temple Lane, EC4Y Middle Temple Lane is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Milford House, WC2R Milford House is a block on Tweezers Alley.
Milford Lane, WC2R Milford Lane is one of the streets of London in the WC2R postal area.
Mitre Court Buildings, EC4Y Mitre Court Buildings is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Montreal Place, WC2R Montreal Place is a road in the WC2R postcode area
Morley House, EC1A Morley House is a block on Holborn Viaduct.
New Academic Building, WC2A New Academic Building is located on Lincoln’s Inn Fields.
New Bridge Street, EC4V New Bridge Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4V postal area.
New Court, EC4V New Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
New Fetter Lane, EC1N New Fetter Lane is one of the streets of London in the EC1N postal area.
New Fetter Lane, EC4A New Fetter Lane is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
New Penderel House, WC1V New Penderel House is a block on High Holborn.
New Square Passage, WC2A This is a street in the WC2A postcode area
New Square, WC2A New Square is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
New Street Square, EC4A New Street Square is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Norfolk Street, WC2R Norfolk Street ran from the Strand in the north to the River Thames and, after the Victoria Embankment was built (1865–1870), to what is now Temple Place.
Norwich Street, EC4A Norwich Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Old Building, WC2A Old Building is a building on Houghton Street.
Old Buildings, WC2A Old Buildings is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Old Mitre Court, EC4Y Old Mitre Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Old Seacoal Lane, EC4M Old Seacoal Lane is one of the streets of London in the EC4M postal area.
Old Square, WC2A Old Square is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Paper Buildings, EC4Y Paper Buildings is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Pemberton Row, EC4A Sir James Pemberton was Lord Mayor of London in 1611, and a member of the Worshipful Company of Goldsmiths.
Penley Court, WC2R Angel Court was renamed as Penley Court in 1937.
Pleydell House, EC4Y Pleydell House is a block on Pleydell Street.
Pleydell Street, EC4Y Pleydell Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Plough Place, EC4A Plough Place is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Ploughs Place, EC4A Ploughs Place is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Plowden Buildings, EC4Y Plowden Buildings is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Plumtree Court, EC4A Plumtree Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Poppins Court, EC4A Poppins Court is an historic alley off Fleet Street.
Portsmouth Street, WC2A Portsmouth Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Portugal Street, WC2A Portugal Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Pump Court, EC4Y Pump Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Quality Court, WC2A Quality Court is a courtyard, built around 1700.
Queen’s Building, WC2R Queen’s Building is sited on Grange Court.
Queens House, WC2A Queens House is a block on Lincoln’s Inn Fields.
Red Lion Court, EC4A Red Lion Court forms part of labyrinth of little passages behind the shops on the north side of Fleet Street.
Rolls Buildings, EC4A Rolls Buildings is a block on Rolls Buildings.
Rolls Passage, WC2A Rolls Passage is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Salisbury Court, EC4Y Salisbury Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Salisbury Square, EC4Y Salisbury Square is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Sardinia House, WC2A Sardinia House can be found on Lincoln’s Inn Fields.
Sardinia Street, WC2A Sardinia Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Sardinia Street, WC2B Sardinia Street, formerly Duke Street, was a street that ran from Prince’s Street in the south to the western side of Lincoln’s Inn Fields in the north.
Savoy House, WC2R Savoy House is a block on Tweezers Alley.
Savoy Street, WC2R Savoy Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2E postal area.
Savoy Street, WC2R Savoy Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2R postal area.
Serjeants Inn, EC4Y Serjeants Inn is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Serle Street, WC2A Serle Street is a road in the WC2A postcode area
Sheffield Street, WC2A Sheffield Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Shoe Lane, EC4A Shoe Lane is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Silver Vaults, WC1V Silver Vaults is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Somerset House, WC2R Somerset House is a block on Strand.
Southampton Buildings, WC2A Southampton Buildings marks the site of the house of the 4th Earl of Southampton, son of Shakespeare’s patron.
St Andrew Street, EC4A St Andrew Street is the northern extension of Shoe Lane.
St Andrew’s House, EC1N St Andrew’s House is a block on St Andrew Street.
St Bride Street, EC4A St Bride Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
St Brides Avenue, EC4Y St Brides Avenue is a narrow alley which leaves Fleet Street almost opposite Shoe Lane.
St Clement’s Building, WC2A St Clement’s Building is a block on Clare Market.
St Clement’s Passage, WC2A St Clement’s Passage is a road in the WC2A postcode area
St Clements Lane, WC2A St Clements Lane is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
St Giles House, WC2B Residential block
Staple Inn Buildings, WC1X Staple Inn Buildings is one of the streets of London in the WC1V postal area.
Star Yard, WC2A Star Yard is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Sterling House, EC1N Sterling House can be found on Holborn.
Stone Buildings, WC2A Stone Buildings is one of the streets of London in the WC2A postal area.
Stonecutter Street, EC4A Stonecutter Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Strand Bridge House, WC2 Strand Bridge House is a block on Strand.
Strand Bridge House, WC2R Strand Bridge House is a block on Strand.
Strand Building, WC2R Strand Building is a block on Strand.
Strand Lane, WC2R Strand Lane is a road in the WC2R postcode area
Strand Underpass, WC2R Strand Underpass is a road in the WC2R postcode area
Strand, EC4A This is a street in the EC4A postcode area
Strand, WC2R Strand is one of the streets of London in the WC2B postal area.
Strand, WC2R Strand, as it nears the Aldwych, is home to many London theatres.
Surrey Street, WC2R Surrey Street was built on land once occupied by Arundel House and its gardens.
Tallis House 2 Tallis Street, EC4Y Tallis House 2 Tallis Street is a location in London.
Tallis House, EC4Y Tallis House is a block on Tallis Street.
Tallis Street, EC4Y This street honours Thomas Tallis, composer whose name is engraved on the façade of the nearby former building of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama.
Tavistock Street, WC2B Tavistock Street is a road in the WC2B postcode area
Temple Avenue, EC4Y Temple Avenue is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Temple Bar House, EC4Y Temple Bar House is a block on Fleet Street.
Temple Chambers, EC4Y Temple Chambers is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Temple Gardens, EC4Y Temple Gardens is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Temple House, EC4Y Temple House is a block on Temple Avenue.
Temple House, WC2R Temple House is sited on Tweezers Alley.
Temple Pier Victoria Embankment, WC2R Temple Pier Victoria Embankment is a location in London.
Temple Place, WC2R Temple Place forms a crescent behind the Embankment Gardens.
Thavies Inn House, EC1N Thavies Inn House is a block on New Fetter Lane.
The Arcade, WC2B The Arcade is one of the streets of London in the WC2B postal area.
The Australia Centre, WC2B The Australia Centre is one of the streets of London in the WC2B postal area.
The Edmund J. Safra Fountain Court, WC2R The Edmund J. Safra Fountain Court is a road in the WC2R postcode area
The Globe House, WC2R The Globe House is a building on Temple Place.
The Macadam Building Street, WC2R The Macadam Building Street is a location in London.
Thomas More Building, WC2A Thomas More Building is a building on Strand.
Took’s Court, EC4A Took’s Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Tudor Street, EC4Y Tudor Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Tweezer’s Alley, WC2R Tweezer’s Alley probably got its name after the tweezers used by smiths to heat items in the forge that stood there.
Unilever House, EC4Y Unilever House is a block on Victoria Embankment.
Vere Street, WC2B Vere Street was a street in the Lincoln’s Inn Fields area
Victoria Embankment, EC4Y Victoria Embankment is part of the Thames Embankment scheme of 19th-century civil engineering that reclaimed land next to the River Thames.
Victoria Embankment, WC2R Victoria Embankment runs from the Houses of Parliament to Blackfriars Bridge.
Victoria House, WC2B Victoria House is a block on Strand.
Water Street, WC2R This is a street in the WC2R postcode area
Watergate, EC4Y Watergate is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Waterman House, WC2 Waterman House is a block on Kingsway.
Waterman House, WC2B Waterman House is sited on Kingsway.
Wellington House, WC2R Wellington House is a block on Strand.
Weston House, WC1V Weston House is located on High Holborn.
Whetstone Park, WC2A Whetstone Park is a road in the WC2A postcode area
Whitefriars Street, EC4Y Whitefriars Street is one of the streets of London in the EC4Y postal area.
Wild Court, WC2B Wild Court leads west from the Kingsway.
William Sinkins House, WC2A William Sinkins House is a block on Carey Street.
Wine Office Court, EC4A Wine Office Court is one of the streets of London in the EC4A postal area.
Wren House, Wren House is a building on Milford Lane
Wren House, WC2 Wren House is a block on Milford Lane.
Wren House, WC2R Wren House is a building on Milford Lane.
Wych Street, WC2R Wych Street was near where Australia House now stands on Aldwych - it ran west from the church of St Clement Danes on the Strand to a point at the southern end of Drury Lane.

All Bar One Holborn This is a bar which was still existing in 2018.
El Vino Fleet Street El Vino Fleet Street

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City of London

The City of London constituted most of London from its settlement by the Romans in the 1st century AD to the Middle Ages, but the conurbation has since grown far beyond its borders.

As the City's boundaries have remained almost unchanged since the Middle Ages, it is now only a tiny part of the metropolis of Greater London, though it remains a notable part of central London. It holds city status in its own right and is also a separate ceremonial county.

It is widely referred to as 'The City' (often written on maps as City and differentiated from the phrase 'the city of London') or 'the Square Mile' as it is 1.12 square miles in area. These terms are also often used as metonyms for the United Kingdom's financial services industry, which continues a notable history of being largely based in the City.

The local authority for the City, the City of London Corporation, is unique in the UK and has some unusual responsibilities for a local council, such as being the police authority. It also has responsibilities and ownerships beyond the City's boundaries. The Corporation is headed by the Lord Mayor of the City of London, an office separate from (and much older than) the Mayor of London.

The City is a major business and financial centre, ranking as the world's leading centre of global finance. Throughout the 19th century, the City was the world's primary business centre, and continues to be a major meeting point for businesses.

The City had a resident population of about 7000 in 2011 but over 300,000 people commute to it and work there, mainly in the financial services sector. The legal profession forms a major component of the northern and western sides of the City - especially in the Temple and Chancery Lane areas where the Inns of Court are located, of which two—Inner Temple and Middle Temple - fall within the City of London boundary.

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Smithfield Market
TUM image id: 1620388545
William Shakespeare
TUM image id: 1509551019
Licence: CC BY 2.0
Waterloo Bridge on an 1810 map.
TUM image id: 1556885410
Licence: CC BY 2.0
Farringdon Street, EC4M
TUM image id: 1530111130
Licence: CC BY 2.0

In the neighbourhood...

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Waterloo Bridge on an 1810 map.
Licence: CC BY 2.0

Middle Temple Lane looking towards Victoria Embankment (2008) The buildings are mainly occupied by barristers’ chambers
Credit: Wiki Commons/J D Mack
Licence: CC BY 2.0

William Davenant had Lisle
Credit: Henry Herringman, London, 1673
Licence: CC BY 2.0

At the southern end of Carmelite Street in the City of London stood the Victorian-era Whitefriars Fire Station.
Credit: Wiki Commons

Kirby Street sign
Licence: CC BY 2.0

Poppins Court, EC4. This small thoroughfare was originally called Popinjaye Alley. The current name was in use by the late 19th century.

Red Lion Street c. 1900, looking north to Javens Chambers and Clerkenwell Road

Saffron Hill street sign
Licence: CC BY 2.0

Newsagent and Hairdresser at 152 Strand, c.1930
Credit: Bishopsgate Institute
Licence: CC BY 2.0

Postcard of the then-new Victoria Embankment (1890s) The Victoria Embankment was primarily designed by Sir Joseph Bazalgette. It incorporates the main low level interceptor sewer and the underground District Line over which a wide road and riverside walkway were built.
Old London postcard

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