More from Joe Saunders
The north-east corner of St Paul’s Churchyard was from the fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries a space where people came to gather and hear sermons preached from an open-air pulpit. During the fierce debates of the Reformation it was on the frontline of a vicious war of words.
In medieval times, Eastcheap was the main meat market in the City of London, with butchers’ stalls lining both sides. It was also the location of Falstaff’s Boar’s Head Inn, featured in Shakespeare’s plays and the home to Nehemiah Wallington, the woodturner whose notebooks reveal a great deal about life in the seventeenth-century city.
Cheapside takes its name from ‘chepe’, a Saxon word for a market and was a main thoroughfare of London for much of the city’s history possibly from the time of Alfred the Great. In this street was seen trade of all kinds. Eventually it became an avenue for royal processions, such was its importance.