Finsbury Circus east side – nearest to Liverpool Street station

Audio 7

Finsbury Circus - East Side

Finsbury Circus - East Side

A Marsh Tit Sings in Finsbury Circus

A Marsh Tit Sings in Finsbury Circus

 

London wall marked in red on a modern map of London

London wall marked in red on a modern map of London

We are to the north of the wall, in the centre of the map, in Finsbury Circus.

 

Reconstructed map of the City of London c.1300

Reconstructed map of the City of London c.1300

Just to the north of the City of London, the great Moorfields bog or fen is clearly marked.

 

“This is the way we wash our clothes,
Wash our clothes,
Wash our clothes.
This is the way we wash our clothes
On a sun shiny morning.”

“This is the way we dry our clothes,
Dry our clothes,
Dry our clothes.
This is the way we dry our clothes
On a sun shiny morning.”

Drying clothes on Moor Fields c. 1553

Drying clothes on Moor Fields c. 1553

In late medieval times, they tried to clear and drain the bog. It was a success. In 1414 the Lord Mayor of London, Thomas Falconer, ordered the construction of a new city gate – Moor Gate – to allow access to the reclaimed Moor – the so-called Moor Fields – just beyond the wall. The area became a popular recreation area for Londoners and was used by the City’s launderers to dry their clothes. This map of about 1553, shows all the shirts and sheets laid out to dry.

Dry cleaners - the modern day laundry - one of many still near Moor Fields today

Dry cleaners - the modern day laundry - one of many still near Moor Fields today

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