Visit London’s Free Tudor Palace
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
1d ago
A short walk from Putney Bridge Station is a surviving Tudor Palace that you can visit for free! Here’s the story of Fulham Palace. History of Fulham Palace In 704 the Bishop of London, Waldhere purchased the Manor of Fulham. I wonder if it ever crossed his mind that it would continue to be a residence for Bishops of London until 1973. Back then the Manor of Fulham encompassed a much larger site than today, with the estate including Hammersmith, Acton, Ealing and Finchley. It was known as a Palace, despite not being officially royal, because the Bishops were thought of as “Princes of the ..read more
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History of the Lanesborough: Hospital to Luxury Hotel
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
1w ago
One of the most famous hotels in the world, the Lanesborough on Hyde Park Corner was previously St George’s Hospital between 1733-1980. Hyde Park Corner was mostly fields right up un the late 18th century.  On the John Rocque map of 1746 you can see how this area surrounded by green space would make an attraction location for a hospital. Image Credit: www.layersoflondon.org John Rocque, 1746 However it started life as a grand house. Lanesborough House  In 1719 James Lane, 2nd Viscount Lanesborough had a house built facing onto Knightsbridge. Sadly he died in 1724 without heir ..read more
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History of the Innholders’ Hall 
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
2w ago
Tucked behind the rumbling Lower Thames Street is the Innholders’ Hall, with a room that’s held the same function since the 17th century. This is the Innholders Hall, one of the City’s 111 worshipful Livery Companies. History of the Worshipful Company of Innholders Formed in the 15th century when the hostelers and haymongers joined forces, the Innholders (as they later became known) received their first Royal Charter in 1514 from King Henry VIII. The Innholders regulated the inns of the City, establishments providing accommodation, food and drink to visitors (and their accompanying horse ..read more
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What’s Left of Whitehall Palace?
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
1M ago
When you walk along Whitehall today it’s clearly an important thoroughfare, lined with large government offices and impressive monuments. What’s not immediately clear is that you’re walking right through the middle of a former Royal residence, a massive, sprawling set of buildings which gives us the street name today. It was destroyed in a fire In 1698, so what remains of Whitehall Palace that we can see today? History of Whitehall Palace Whitehall Palace begins as York Place, an impressive residence built in the mid 13th century for Walter de Grey, the Archbishop of York. Under Thomas ..read more
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London’s Oldest Street Signs
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
1M ago
I’ve written about some of the most curious London street names before (here and here) but over the years of walking and exploring London I’ve also spotted some incredibly old street signs, some dating back to the 17th century! History of London Street Signs It seems such an obvious necessity for a city today, but signs showing a street’s name took a while to come into force. Regulations on signage seem to start with one of our dearest institutions, the pub! From 1389, alehouses had to hang a sign outside their property to signal that beer was for sale. Shops soon followed suit and erect ..read more
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What’s Left of Norman London?
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
2M ago
One of the biggest upheavals in England’s history was the Norman Conquest of 1066 but how much can still be seen of London from the 11th and 12th centuries? So are there any actual sites that can still be visited from Norman London? I’m glad you asked. Remarkably, yes! The Norman Conquest  The Norman period lasts from the beginning of the Norman Conquest in 1066 until the reign of the first Plantagenet King, Henry II, in 1154. In October 1066, believing that he was the rightful King of England, William the Duke of Normandy sailed across the English Channel to face Harold Godwinson ..read more
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All Hallows Twickenham | The City Church That Moved 12 Miles
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
2M ago
Along the Chertsey Road looms a tower that looks extremely out of place. That’s because it dates from the 17th century and previously stood over 12 miles away in the City of London. History of All Hallows Lombard Street The first record we have for a church at the eastern edge of Lombard Street is in 1053.  It was rebuilt in 1294 then enlarged 200 years later. Given its location in the heart of the financial centre of London, the rich community of neighbouring merchants continued to improve it and a north aisle and steeple were added in 1544, paid for by the Pewterers Company. A su ..read more
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The Story of Eleanor Coade (and Where to Find Coade Stone in London)
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
2M ago
Even if you’ve never heard of Eleanor Coade, you will have almost certainly walked past some of her work in London. Born in 1733, Elenor Coade would become one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the 18th century, change the face of manufacturing and leave a lasting visual legacy across London, the UK and beyond. In April 1759 her father went bankrupt. The family (George, his wife Eleanor and the two girls, Eleanor and Elizabeth) went to London. In 1762 George is recorded as living in Charterhouse Square meanwhile by 1766 Eleanor is working as a linen draper. Coade stone keystone in Ang ..read more
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Bloomsbury’s Horse Hospital
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
3M ago
Tucked behind Russell Square Station is Colonnade, a cobbled mews street in which hides the 18th century former horse hospital. Today you might have to fight through the crowds queuing for beignets from the hugely popular Fortitude Bakery, but if you’re waiting patiently for your sweet treat it’s worth admiring the Horse Hospital, a double-decker inner city stables. A very rare Grade II listed survivor! History of the Horse Hospital If we look to the 1746 John Rocque map, it’s immediately evident where the metropolis ends, The Lambs Conduit Fields visible to the north. Image Credit: ww ..read more
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History of Shafto Mews, Belgravia 
Look Up London Blog
by Katie Wignall
3M ago
Tucked off Sloane Street in Belgravia is an enticing-looking mews with an interesting backstory. This is the story of Shafto Mews. Marking the entrance today is a fabulous archway, dating from c.1880. This grandiose opening connects mews with the surrounding terracotta mansions typified as Pont Street Dutch.  The unique architectural term was coined by Sir Osbert Lancaster in the mid 20th century. It’s a nod to then striking red colour, gabled roofs and decorative embellishment found around Belgravia’s Pont Street. You can get a sense of this style in Cadogan Square, where you have t ..read more
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