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Cockney Cats

September 2, 2017
by the gentle author

Celebrating the eighth birthday of Spitalfields Life with a week of favourite posts from the past year

Micky is the centre of the Day family of Copley St in the parish of Stepney

The whole family pamper him and have a wonderful time

Bill on weekdays, William on Sundays, the cat at the Bricklayers Arms in Commercial Rd has a wonderful life since the Guv’nor Jim Meade was once a Dumb Animals’ Food Purveyor. At seventy-seven Jim looks back on a long and distinguished life in Stepney during his thirty-two years as Guv’nor.

Yeoman Warder Clark & Pickles on Tower Green

On duty at the Tower of London

The tail-less cat of the guardroom who came out to watch Pickles being photographed

Min, Port of London Authority cat has many friends among the dockers and very good ratting at night

Min of the magnificent whiskers has made her home in the office of K Warehouse in the Milwall Docks

Customs & Excise cat guards the Queen’s Warehouse and is paid a Treasury Allowance of sixpence a day

Mitzi has the run of her ship from the lifeboats to the Officers’ Mess

Old Bill the railway cat, his favourite position is the entrance to Blackfriars Station

Old Bill takes cover when necessary in the rush hour

Tibs the Great (1950-64), the official Post Office cat at Headquarters, does not normally live in this 1856 pillarbox

This cat’s curiosity unearthed a box of ancient stamps and seals, some dating back to Queen Anne

Minnie the Stock Exchange cat was a self-willed and determined kitten who adopted the dealing floor as her own preserve

Minnie enjoys the banter in the tea room

Tiger of The Times is the best office cat in Fleet St

Tiger of The Times is equally at ease whether in the Board Room …

… or doing his rounds in the Print Room

Sneaking back into Lloyds of London is difficult even for the resident cat

Cecil is the Front of House cat at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane

Cecil is very elusive in his many hiding places from which he has to be coaxed by the Royal Waiter before the performance can begin

When thirteen people sit down to dine at the Savoy and the thirteenth guest is Jimmy Edwards, almost anything can happen. The famous black cat is invited to occupy the fourteenth place so that everyone can enjoy the sparkling conversation.

Bill at the Tower of London (1935-47)

Images courtesy Bishopsgate Institu

I mages from Cockney Cats by Warren Tute with photographs by Felix Fonteyn, 1953

You may also like to take a look at

Schroedinger, Shoreditch Church Cat

Doorkins Magnificat, Southwark Cathedral Cat

East End Cats

The Cats of Spitalfields (Part One)

The Cats of Spitalfields (Part Two)

The Cats of Elder St

Blackie, the Last Spitalfields Market Cat

4 Responses leave one →
  1. Hilda Kean permalink
    September 2, 2017

    Interesting that Warren Tate presents such positive images in the early 1950s in a very different impression compared to some of the thousands of cats and dogs killed by Londoners during the Second World War!

  2. Colin Barber permalink
    September 2, 2017

    Happy 8th year anniversary Spitalfields Life. Thankyou for the many fascinating stories, tinged with poignancy about the changing of places and moving on of lives.

  3. September 2, 2017

    What a fine selection of wonderful cats. Valerie

  4. Carolyn Foley permalink
    September 4, 2017

    Happy 8th anniversary for Spitalfields Life. I realised that I must have found your blog in it’s first year when I was in Londond visiting my son. He was working and I wandered all over the city, walking mostly, including Spitalfields. Thank you for a lovely story of the Cockney Cats.

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