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The London Wards - Langbourn ward in 1756

Langborn and Candlewick Wards in 1756 neatly engraved from a New Survey

Langborn and Candlewick Wards in 1756 neatly engraved from a New Survey

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Index of London wards in 1756 by William Maitland

CHAP. XXIV.

Of LANGBOURN WARD, and Fenny about.

With a Plan, neatly engraved from a New Survey.

Its Name. Extent. Modern State. Government. Alderman and Common Councilmen. Parishes and Churches. Hudson's bay hall. Pewterers hall. General Post office. Antiquities. Discharge from Fifteenths

This Ward of Langborne, or Langbourn, takes its Name from a Rivulet or long Bourn of sweet Water, which anciently broke out of a Spring near to the Place where Magpye alley adjoining to St. Catharine Coleman's Church now stands, which ran down the Street Westward, and through Lombard street as far as the West End of St. Mary Woolnoth's Church, where turning South, and dividing itself into several Shares, Rills or Streams, it gave Name to Sharebourne lane, called also Southbourne lane, because it ran
South to the River Thames; and by its spreading near the Spring head, the contiguous Street became so swampy, moorish or fenny, especially about the Church, Which stood in the broad Way between Mincing lane and Rood lane, that it was thence called Fenchurch street.
The Ward also partook ot the same Name, and was enrolled in the City Records by the Appellation of Lang bourne and Fenny about.

It is encompassed on the East by Aldgate Ward ; Bound on the North by Aldgate and Limestreet Wards ; on the South by Tower street, Billingsgate, Bridge and Candlewick Wards ; and on the West by Wallbrook Ward.

The East and West Limits of this Ward are Extent, taken at one hundred Feet from the West Corner of the North Side of Lombard street to thirty five Feet of the West Side of Gracechurch street ; and from Gracechurch street to Smith's Buildings on the North Side of the East End. And at one hundred and twenty five Feet from the West Corner of the South Side of Lombard street, across Gracechurch street, and up the South Side of Fenchurch street, as far as the North West End of Mark lane.

The Ancients measured it thus ;

The South Side of this Ward begins in the East, at the Chain to be drawn aCross Mark lane up into Fenchurch street, and so Well: by the North End of Mincing lane to St. Margaret Pattens street or Rood lane, and down that Street to the Midway towards St. Margaret's Church ; then by Philpot lane (so called from Sir John Philpot, who dwelt there, and was Owner thereof) and down that Lane, six or eight houses on each Side, is all of this Ward.

Then by Grace church Corner into Lombard street to St. Clement' s lane, and down the same to St. Clement's Church ; then down St. Nicholass lane, and down the same to St. Nicholas's Church, and the same Church is of this Ward.

Then to Abchurch lane, and down some small Portion thereof; then down Sherborn lane, a Part thereof, and a Part of Bear binders lane are of this Ward ; and then down Lombard street to the Sign of the Angel, almost to the Corner over against Stocks Market ; and these are the Bounds of this Ward.

Besides these two main Streets, these following :
St. Swithins lane, Abchurch lane, St. Nicholas lane, St. Clements lane ; all which are on the South Side of Lombard street ; and on the North Side are Popes head alley, Exchange alley, Birchin lane, and George yard. Then in Fenchurch street on the North Side, Lime street, Cullum street, and Smiths buildings , and on the South Side, Philpot lane, Rood lane, Mincing lane, and Mark lane : In all which said Streets, Lanes and Alleys, there are several Courts, and of these in Order.

Lombard street is throughout graced with good and lofty Buildings, among which are many that surpass those in other Streets, and is generally inhabited by Goldsmiths, Bankers, and other eminent Tradesmen. At the East End near Grace church street, on the North Side, is the Church of Alhallows.

Rail alley, not broad, but somewhat long, hath an Entrance by Alhallows Church, and with some Turnings falls into the Cross keys Inn; from whence it hath a Passage into Gracechurch street.
Near this was the George Inn ; since the Fire rebuilt with very good houses, well inhabited, and Warehouses; being a large open Yard, and now called George yard : At the further End of which is the George and Vultur Tavern ; which is a large house, with a Passage into St. Michael's alley, and so strait forward into Cornhill ; on the right Hand the Passage leads into Gracechurch street ; on the left into Birchin lane through Castle alley, and also through White lion court.

Next on the North Side is the Church of St. Edmund Lombard street, which fronts St. Clements lane on the South.

A little further West on the same Side of the Way is Birchin lane, which runs into Cornhill, a great Thoroughfare to and from the Exchange. It is well inhabited, especially by Salesmen for Mens Apparel. In this Lane are several Courts and Alleys, viz. Exchange alley, Castle alley, and White lion court; but they are in Cornhill Ward.

On the South Side of Lombard street, betwixt Gracechurch street and St. Clement' s lane, is White hart court, with a Passage through an Entry into another Court so called, that leadeth into Gracechurch street; a Place well inhabited by Wholesale Dealers, and most by Quakers, where they have their Meeting house ; but of this Court the greatest Part is in Bridge Ward within, that which is in this Ward being next to Lombard street.
Plough yard hath a good Free stone Pavement, and the houses well built and inhabited. Three Kings court, well inhabited by Wholesale Dealers and others. Out of this Court is a Passage into two others, the one leading into St. Clement' s lane, narrow and ordinary ; but the other is large and open, and well tenanted ; and this Court hath a Passage into Nag's head court, which is long and large, and another Passage into St. Clements lane. George alley, but small.

More West is St. Clement' s lane, well built and inhabited. The South Part, which is next Cannon street, is in Candlewick Ward, viz. from the North Side of St. Clement's Eastcheap Church. Adjoining to this is a handsome Place, called Church alley ; the North Side having a Row of houses, the South Side lying open to the Church and Church yard.

The next is St. Nicholas lane, well built, and inhabited by Merchants and Wholesale Dealers. The South End beyond Fox's Ordinary in Candle wick Ward. On the West Side, near Lombard street, is the Church yard of St. Nicholas Aeons; which Church was not rebuilt after the Fire of London, but the Parish united to St. Edmund the King's in Lombard street. There is a narrow Alley on the South Side of it into Abchurch lane.

More South, on the same Side of the Way, is Foxs court, or Ordinary, so called from a publick Eating house formerly there kept : It is a handsome Mace, with good built houses, well inhabited by Merchants and Persons of Repute. Near this Court is the Bell Tavern, which hath a Passage through Bell alley into Cannon street.

Still proceeding Westward there is Abchurch lane, which hath the greatest Part in Candlewick Ward, where it is treated of, but in that Part of it which is in this Ward is the famous Tavern called Pontack's, from one of that Name, who formerly kept it. This house has been always so noted for its Elegance in Entertainments, that it is not only made Use of by the rich Merchants, among whom it is seated, but very frequently by Persons of the first Quality from the Court End of the Town.

Farther East is Fenchurch street ; a Street of good Account, being large, well built, and inhabited by Merchants and others. It is a Street of good Length, beginning near Aldgate, and running Westward into Gracechurch street. In the Midst of this Street, before the Fire of London in 1666, stood the small Church of St. Gabriel Fenchurch, corruptly called Fanchurch, not rebuilt, but the Parish united unto St. Margaret's Pattens.

Here is an Entry called Fenchurch alley ; at the upper End of which is the Church yard.
At the South West Corner of this Street is the Church of St. Bennet Gracechurch, but not in this Ward.

The Courts, Alleys, and Places of Name in the Part of the Street in this Ward are as follow, beginning at the West End :

First is Ingrams court, an open square Place, well built and inhabited, made into Buildings in the Place of Sir Thomas Ingram's house, the Owner thereof.
Bell yard, but small.
St. Dionis Backchurch, seated at the turning into Lime street.
By the Corner of this Church you turn into Lime street, running Northwards into Leadenhall Street against St. Mary Axe ; at which End it is narrower than in the Midst. A Street taken up by several Merchants ; but the Part in this Ward goeth not much farther than Cullum street, the greatest Part being in Lime street Ward.
But to return to Fenchurch street : Eastward of Lime street is St. Paul's alley ; at the upper End of which are two or three good houses.
Hartford court hath very handsome houses, and a Free stone Pavement.
Callum street very open and large, with good new built houses, well inhabited, which with a turning Passage Westward falls into Lime street : It takes its Name from an ancient Mansion or large house, the Property of the honourable Family of the Cullums, which took up the whole Site of this Street. In this Street is the Ipswich Arms Inn, well built, and of good Account.
Fen court, very handsome and broad, with a Free stone Pavement, the houses are large and gracefully built, fit for Merchants and Persons of Quality, who there inhabit. It hath a good Air, as lying open to Gardens on the West Side.
Culver court, but small, with a Free stone Pavement, at the upper End is the Hall of Hudfons Bay Company.
Smith's Buildings hath a narrow Entrance, with a Free stone Pavement, but at the upper End the Court maketh an open Square, with very good new Buildings well inhabited : And this Court hath an open Passage into Billiter lane East, and likewise a good handsome Passage into Lime street West.
Near to Smiths Rents, or Buildings, is Ironmongers Hall. See Aldgate Ward .

In the South Side of Fenchurch street are these Places of Name, beginning Eastward :
Mark lane, or Mart lane, over against Billiter lane ; a long Street. But the Part in this Ward begins Southward of Alhallows Staining Church, which it takes in, and all the West Side to Fenchurch street, the rest being in Tower street Ward.
This Alhallows Staining is obscurely seated, lying backward from the Street, the Passage to it being through Star alley, which hath a turning Passage into Fenchurch street. This Alley hath old built houses on the North Side, on the South whereof is the Church.
West of Mark lane is Mincing, or Minchion lane, which hath little or no Part in this Ward ; it lieth in Tower street Ward, where it will be described. Mediford court, a very handsome large Court, with graceful new built houses of Brick, well inhabited, especially the upper Part or End, where the houses are spacious for the Reception of Merchants.
From this Court to Rood lane are several large houses built backwards, with Court yards before them, and great Gates to the Street to ihut up, being the Seats of Merchants.
Rood lane hath also but a small Part in this Ward, the greatest being in Billingsgate Ward ; but in this Part is Odium's court, which is but small.
Westward of Rood lane is Cradle court, which is but small, with a Free stone Pavement.

Philpot lane falleth into great Eastcheap, a Place pretty well supplied with Inhabitants, Amongst which are several Merchants.
The South Part of this Lane, Northwards of Coopers Hall, is in Billingsgate Ward. On the West Side is Braben court, which is large, well built and inhabited ; and on the East Side is Moses court, which is but narrow and ordinary.

There are to watch at the several Stands in this Ward, every Night, a Constable, the Beadle, and thirty four Watchmen.
The Jury returned by the Wardmote Inquest Jury for this Ward are to serve as Jurors in the several Courts in Guildhall in the Month of November.
It hath an Alderman, his Deputy, ten Common Councilmen, fifteen Constables, nine Scavengers, seventeen Men of the Wardmote Inquest, and a Beadle. It is taxed to the Fifteenth in the Exchequer at 20 l. 9 s. 8 d. In London at 21 l.
The Alderman is Sir Joseph Hankey, Knt. and the Gentlemen of the Common Council are, Robert Wilson, Deputy, John Pope, Edward Waldo, Richard West, John Box, Ingham Porster, John Scrivener, John Springett, Thomas Griffin, Monkhouse Davidson, and Thomas Cole.

In this Ward there are several Things worthy Remark of Observation, viz.
First, Four Parishes with Churches; as, (1.) St. Dionis Backchurch. (2.) Allhallows Lombard street. (3.) St. Edmund the King. (4.) St. Mary Woolnoth. And three Parishes without Churches; as, (1.) St. Gabriel Fenchurcb. (2.) Alhallows Stanechurch. (3.) St. Nicholas Aeons : Of which hereafter in our parochial History.

Secondly, In this Ward stand the Halls belonging to the Hudsons Bay Company, and to the Pewterers, as also some Part of Ironmongers Hall.
(1.) The Hall in which the Hudsons Bay Company meet to transact Business is a handsome Brick Building, whole Front next the Street has been lately repaired and beautified, and carries the Appearance of one of the finest Pieces of Brick Work, with Pilasters, Architraves, &c. in the whole City. This Hall stand, backward on the South Side of Fenchurch street, and is about one
hundred Feet West of Ironmongers Hall. This Company was incorporated in 1670 under certain Conditions : Of which more particularly hereafter.
(2.) Pewterers Hall is a handsome large Building, with a Parlour and Court Room, adorned with Wainscot, Hangings, and the Piclure of Sir William Smallwood, who was Master of this Company 2 Hen. VII. who gave this common Hall with a Garden and six Tenements thereunto adjoining, to the said Company. It is situate in Lime street almost facing the West End of Cullum street.
Thirdly, The General Post Office for Country and post Foreign Letters is also situate in Lombard stret, near its South West Extremity, and facing the South End of Pope's head alley.

Of what Antiquity the Post in this Kingdom is, I cannot ascertain ; but by the first Account I find thereof, it appears to have been managed by several private Offices, which had their respective Districts. But great Inconveniencies arising from their different Methods of Management, they were suppressed, and a certain Number of publick Offices erected in lieu thereof: But these not answering the End proposed, a General Post Office was erected by Act of Parliament, in the 12th of Charles II Anno 1660, to be kept within the City of London, under the Direction of a Post master, to be appointed by the King. The General Post master was, by the said Act, impowered to appoint Post houses in divers Parts of the Country hitherto unprovided, both in Post and By Roads.

By the said Act of Parliament, the Postage of Letters to and from all Places therein mentioned was not only ascertained, but likewise the Rates of Post Horses, to be paid by all such as shall ride Post.

And upon the Union of the Kingdoms of England and Scotland, a General Post Office was established by Act of Parliament in the Year 1710, not only for the united Kingdom of Great Britain, but likewise for that of Ireland, and her Majesty's Plantations in the West Indies and North America,

Fourthly, In Fenchurch street was an eminent House called Denmark house, where the Russian Ambassador was lodged in the Time of Queen Mary.

Then have ye Lombard street, so called of the Longobards, and other Merchants, Strangers of divers Nations, assembling there twice every Day, of what Original or Continuance I have not read of Record, more than that Edward II. in the twelfth of his Reign, confirmed a Messuage some time belonging to Robert Turke, abutting on Lombard street toward the South, and toward
Cornhill on the Norch, for the Merchants of Florence ; which proveth that Street to have had the Name of Lombard street before the Reign of Edward II.

Before the building ot the Exchange, it was by divers Common Councils, about the 26th Year of King Henry VIII. consulted upon, whether there should be a Burse, or convenient Place of meeting for Merchants to treat of their Feats oi Mercers to the City for the making ot a new Burse at Leaden hall. Whereupon it being put to Hands, whether the new Burfe should be removed out of Lombard street ; it was agreed, that it should not.
So that the Merchants Meeting continued there till the Royal Exchange was builded ; that is, until the twenty second of December, in the Year 1568, on the which Day the said Merchants began to make their Meetings at the Burse, a Place then new builded for that Purpose in the Ward of Cornhill, and was since by her Majesty Queen Elizabeth named the Royal Exchange. So that here anciently the Lombards or Bankers dwelt ; and so they did to the Days of Queen Elizabeth, and even to this Day.

And Last updated on: Tuesday, 27-Oct-2020 15:49:34 GMT