Loquis: Billingsgate

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Published on:  2020-04-29 10:20:00


It is one of the 25 Wards of the City of London. Its name derives from being the City's original water gate, and this small City Ward is situated on the north bank of the River Thames between London Bridge and Tower Bridge in the south-east of the Square Mile. Billingsgate's most ancient historical reference is as a water gate to the city of Trinovantum (the name given to London in medieval British legend), as mentioned in the Historia Regum Britanniae written c. 1136 by Geoffrey of Monmouth. This work describes how Belinus, a legendary king of Britain said to have held the throne from about 390 BC, erected London's first fortified water gate: After the Great Fire of London, shops and stalls set up trade forming arcades on the harbour's west side, whilst on the main quay, an open market soon developed, called "Roomland". Within the Ward remain two churches: St Mary-at-Hill and St Margaret Pattens, after the demolition of St George Botolph Lane in 1904. Billingsgate is also referred to in the song "Sister Suffragette" in the 1964 version of Mary Poppins.

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