Skip to content

In Fleet St

May 13, 2014
by the gentle author

Walking between Spitalfields and the West End, Fleet St has emerged as a favourite route in recent years, because the detail of this magnificent thoroughfare never ceases to fascinate me with new interest – and so I spent a morning wandering there yesterday with my camera to record some of these sights for you.

Alsal Watches

Royal Courts of Justice by George Edward Street, opened 1882

This marker at the entrance to the City of London was unveiled in 1880 and is the work of Horace Jones, architect of Tower Bridge and Smithfield, Billingsgate and Leadenhall Markets

Hoare’s Bank from Hen & Chicken Court

Hoare’s Bank founded in 1672

Clifford’s Inn founded in 1344

Entrance to Middle Temple, 1684

St Dunstan-in-the-West

Angels at the entrance to St Dunstan-in-the-West

Statue of Queen Elizabeth I that once stood upon the west side of Ludgate, demolished in 1760

Sixteenth century statues of King Lud and his sons that originally stood upon the east side of Ludgate

Old King Lud

Removed in 1878, Christopher Wren’s Temple Bar now stands at the entrance to Paternoster Sq

Prince Henry’s Room over entrance to Inner Temple, 1610

St Brides by Christopher Wren, 1672, reflected in the Daily Express building by Ellis & Clarke, 1932

St Bartholomew House by Herbert Huntly-Gordon, 1900

Carving upon The George

Pulpit in St Clement Danes by Grinling Gibbons

Eagles in St Clement Danes

Statue of Dr Samuel Johnson

Looking east down Fleet St

21 Responses leave one →
  1. David Cantor permalink
    May 13, 2014

    Ah memories! I worked opposite the Law Courts in a building that survived the Great Fire in 1666. On the ground floor was the Wig & Pen Club, a restaurant used by journalists & members of the legal profession. Above, were our offices, it was impossible to pass on the stairs as they were too narrow, they also creaked mightily and were untouchable because of the listed nature of the building. Today, it is is an Asian restaurant.

    Loved the photos


  2. May 13, 2014

    Good to take a stroll along Fleet Street again, thanks for the happy memories. Valerie

  3. Carolyn Badcock - nee Hooper permalink
    May 13, 2014

    What a poignant photo of Dr Samuel Johnson – seemingly representing the learned and wealthy of times gone by and now – with today’s needy man, napping on the pavement, representing the outcast and poor of each and every age. It seems a cold cold existence for many.

    Again I say – but for the grace of God, go I. Such wonderful black and white photography, gentle author.

    From The Land Down Under on this sunny breezy Autumn afternoon.

  4. Warren Yates permalink
    May 13, 2014

    My wife and I have spent many a happy evening chasing down Fleet St,on the way to the night’s entertainment and being overawed by the history and tradition of this splendid route.If the traffic stops for long enough you can hear the echoes of previous inhabitants reminding us that we are all just passing through.

  5. May 13, 2014

    Some exciting photographs — but: they aren’t really from yesterday, are they?? They seem to be somewhat older!

    Love & Peace

  6. Helen Curtis permalink
    May 13, 2014

    Once again Gentle Author you’ve made our hearts race with these stunning black and white photos. This time of Fleet Street, one of London’s most fascinating and historic thoroughfares. Thank you for enlightening us daily and sharing your knowledge with us.

  7. May 13, 2014

    Exquisite photographs. I particularly like the one above the one of St Bartholomew House. Poignant, the one of Dr Samuel Johnson – both gentleman undoubtedly shaded by the London Plane trees. With Temple Bar shimmying amongst them, your photographic record tells me so much, with so few words. Thank you

  8. Ellen in NEW England permalink
    May 13, 2014

    I like seeing the time change on the clocks – so many of them; it is always so important to know what time it isn’t, as my Dad was always telling me – not time for supper, not yet time to leave for work, etc.

    So much skilled and visionary labor went into all of this – the stone masons, the architects, the wood carvers, the clock-makers. And all those hidden places like Hen and Chicken Yard.

    Holey moley, did you just change that as I am writing, from King Charles II to King Lud? Very funny coincidence. I wouldn’t know either of them from Adam … You see he has a fish behind his head.

  9. May 13, 2014

    More truly superb photos from you, Gentle Author; as a photographer myself I have a critical eye and can scarcely believe that you first picked up a camera only a few years ago. You have a questing, inquisitive eye and a highly refined, elegant sense of composition. Love the reflection of the Law Courts in the watch shop window, and the rain-spattered trace of St Bride’s steeple at the Express building. The medium of black & white renders perfectly the nuances of light and shadow, texture and form.

    Incidentally, the marvellous art deco foyer of the Express building is usually accessible over the Open House weekend in September. Also well worth a look in Fleet Street is the narrow mosaic-floored and mirrored interior of the Tipperary pub (refitted 1895). I have lived in London for 50 years, and Fleet Street remains one of my favourite thoroughfares for the surprising close conjunctions of architectural styles and the continuous flow of pedestrians on its narrow pavements.

  10. Rose Ades permalink
    May 13, 2014

    What a fabulous array, layers, juxtapositions, context for each other, and for us – who’ve sometime walked or worked here, or watched the Olympic victory parade process – whatever, to think and feel again.

  11. John Garton permalink
    May 13, 2014

    Thanks so much for those photos. I spent my working life as a journalist in Fleet Street and they brought back many memeories to this old hack now living in Florida.

  12. Neil Anderson permalink
    May 13, 2014

    Thank you for the picture of Hoare’s Bank. “My bankers are Hoares” – one of my favorite quotes from Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey-Maturin series.

  13. May 13, 2014

    lovely pics as always!

  14. May 13, 2014

    This area has always been a huge favorite of mine. So many happy memories wandering this area of London with hopefully a stop in one or two of the wonderful remaining Wren churches and always to the Temple Church and Dr. Johnson’s house, 2 touchstones for me. Wish for a tipple at El Vino’s or the Cheshire Cheese. Thanks for the lovely photos.

  15. John Campbell permalink
    May 13, 2014

    Wonderful photos. Love the chap walking into shot and the sleeping man under the tree, brilliant work. That area of Fleet St is so rich with history it would be quite easy to spend a day there.

  16. Gary Arber permalink
    May 13, 2014

    I liked the picture of Dr. Samuel Johnson but who was the chap represented by the statue ?

  17. David Whittaker permalink
    May 13, 2014

    Wonderful photographs…Thank You.

  18. Victoria permalink
    May 13, 2014

    Love the photos, love the walk. Added to possible weekend pursuits! Thank you.

  19. May 15, 2014

    Wonderful photographs; thank you. Have you ever looked inside the bank opposite the Law Courts? It has very extravagant tiled decorations, some in the entrance area and different ones inside.

  20. May 16, 2014

    Wonderful shots & a great tour!

  21. May 16, 2014

    Stunning photos of somewhere I walk everyday. Next time pop into the office -I’m on Chancery Lane. Drinks is on me!

Leave a Reply

Note: Comments may be edited. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS