Category Archives: Royalty and the East End of London

Thomas Rainsborough, the Levellers and the English Civil War

Roundheads versus Cavaliers, Parliament versus Royalty. In the popular mind the English Civil War is a simple conflict of two clearly opposing factions, which will end with the beheading of one king — and unfold a decade later with the … Continue reading

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Execution Dock, Wapping

DURING MOST of London’s history, murderers, thieves and other miscreants received swift justice. An open-topped cart to Tyburn, and a swift drop from the gallows was the judicial response to a bewildering variety of crimes, some of them minor to … Continue reading

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Cosmo Lang, Bishop of Stepney, Archbishop of Canterbury

ARCHBISHOPS of Canterbury are swiftly forgotten after their reign is over (the odd Thomas A Becket aside). The cleric simply joins the dozens who have filled the role over a millennium and a half – and time rolls on. But … Continue reading

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Queen of the East End of London

This year, Elizabeth II reaches a milestone passed by just one British monarch before – only Queen Victoria has previously celebrated a Diamond Jubilee. Much of that of course has to do with a general increase in our longevity as … Continue reading

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The Beefeaters at the Tower of London

The chief warder raises the pewter punchbowl and, with the words ‘May you never die a yeoman warder’ welcomes another new recruit to the centuries-old ranks of the Beefeaters. For arcane ritual, curious titles and elaborate ceremony, there are not … Continue reading

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Prince Charles and Bishopsgate

PRINCE CHARLES’s entry into the debate over Bishopsgate goods yard last week will strike a chord with many Londoners nervously eyeing the encroachment of City office blocks into the East End. The Prince issued an impassioned plea, arguing for the … Continue reading

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