A walk along Fleet Street

>>  Friday, March 13, 2015

I had some time to kill in London and I had wandered over Waterloo Bridge through Somerset House and thought I would head in the direction of Moorgate with plenty of time to walk there.

I found myself on Fleet Street.

I knew I was there when I saw the sign 1 Fleet Street,  With this monument in front of it.

It is the Temple Bar marker.  Have a read about Temple Bar, it was basically a boundary line at which trade was regulated.  There was an arch here (Wren's gate) that is now near St Pauls.  If you're going to go this way have a brief read on the history of the area first, it will help, I wish I had!

 The Courts Of Justice are on Fleet Street, it is a beautiful building.  I enjoyed marvelling at the court yards just off the pathway, it was like stepping out of time.

There were barristers galore walking down the busy footpath, it was busy and exciting and yet there was hundreds of years of unchanged all around.

There was a timber framed building that caught my eye, I didn't take a  picture of it, but I stood and pondered it for a while, wondering why it was such an old building in such a 'relatively' modern street by comparison.  It was 17 Fleet Street, it is one of the few surviving buildings in the City dating from before the Great Fire of London in 1666.  It isn't open to the public.

I wandered into St Dunstan's-in-the-West, there was a lunch time concert of opera in progress, I hovered at the door for a while listening to the incongruence of such a beautiful voice with a background of heavy traffic.  I'm sure that the other side of the door the traffic is a distant murmur. 

Next to the Church was this beautiful wall

And 'Hen and Chicken Court' the name made me chuckle.

And believing that it was to do with the Daily Telegraph, the first British paper to have a telegraph line, as the flag stone dutifully told me, I wandered down it. 

Nothing to see here, I thought and wandered away.

Turns out it is the site of Sweeney Todd's barbers shop and gruesome deeds indeed happened around this alley. Sweeney Todd was the 'inventor' of the cut throat razor: literally.

(Seriously now I have read all about this road I have to go back for a second look!)

There are many more statues and places of note to look at.

There is a statue of Mary, Queen of Scots which I did not see and the current owner of the Beano, which I did see - marvellous window display.

And this sign caught my eye, I found it oddly captivating.

It is the symbol of Richard Hoare who started his goldsmith's business at the sign of the Golden Bottle.  It is now C. Hoare & Co, the only independent bank.

No wonder I was drawn to it, oh my! the money that must be there.

Fleet street continued but another sign caught my eye and I wandered into another alley way.  Which is a whole post in it's own right. I will continue this story another day.


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