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St Mary Aldermary Churchyard City of London

Summary

St Mary Aldermary is an early church, described by John Stow as 'older than any church of St Mary in the Citie' and Aldermary (the elder Mary) may reflect this. Various additions to the building took place over the years, including partial rebuilding in 1510/11 at the behest of the Lord Mayor of London, Sir Henry Keble. In 1534 one of its rectors, Henry Gold, was executed for his involvement with the 'Holy Maid of Kent'. John Milton married his third wife here in 1662. Damaged in the Great Fire of 1666, the church was rebuilt by Christopher Wren. The former churchyard is now laid out as a small garden with a central tree, three headstones set against the wall among shrubbery and gravestones form a path leading to the west entrance of the church.

Basic Details

Site location:
Queen Victoria Street/Watling Street

Postcode:
EC4M 9BW ( Google Map)

Type of site:
Public Gardens

Date(s):
C11, C16, 1625-9, 1682

Designer(s):

Listed structures:
LBI: St Mary Aldermary Church

Borough:
City of London

Site ownership:
Diocese of London

Site management:
City of London Corporation Open Spaces Dept. (section of churchyard maintained by church)

Open to public?
Yes

Opening times:
unrestricted. Church: Mon & Thurs 11am-3pm

Special conditions:

Facilities:

Events:

Public transport:
Tube: Mansion House (District, Circle)

The information shown above was correct at the time of the last update 01/11/2002
Please check with the site owner or manager for latest news. www.cityoflondon.gov.uk/openspaces

Further Information

Grid ref:
TQ324810

Size in hectares:
0.0305

Green Flag:
No

On EH National Register :
No

EH grade:
None

Site on EH Heritage at Risk list:
No

Registered common or village green on Commons Registration Act 1965:
No

Protected under London Squares Preservation Act 1931:
No

Local Authority Data

The information below is taken from the relevant Local Authority's planning legislation, which was correct at the time of research but may have been amended in the interim. Please check with the Local Authority for latest planning information.

On Local List:
No

In Conservation Area:
Yes

Conservation Area name:
Bow Lane

Tree Preservation Order:
No

Nature Conservation Area:
No

Green Belt:
No

Metropolitan Open Land:
No

Special Policy Area:
No

Other LA designation:
Strategic Viewing Corridor

St Mary Aldermary Churchyard

St Mary Aldermary Churchyard, November 2002. Photo: S Williams

Click photo to enlarge.

Fuller information

St Mary's Church is of early foundation, described by Stow as 'older than any church of St Mary in the Citie' and Aldermary (the elder Mary) may refer to it being the oldest church so dedicated. In the time of William the Conqueror the church was within the living of the Priory of Christ Church Canterbury and in 1349 it was a beneficiary under the will of vintner Richard Chaucer. It was partly rebuilt from 1510/11 at the behest of Sir Henry Keble, then Lord Mayor of London, and completed after his death, with a vault for Keble on the north side of the choir. In 1626-29 further work was carried out, including completion of the tower. One of its rectors, Henry Gold, was executed in 1534 for his involvement with the 'Holy Maid of Kent'. John Milton married his third wife here in 1662. Damaged in the Great Fire of 1666, the church was rebuilt in 1679-82 by Wren, funded largely by Henry Rogers; part of the earlier building was incorporated, including the lower part of the C16th tower.

The Wren church has a small garden with a central tree in a York paved area by the west entrance of the church, with three headstones are set back against the wall among shrubbery. Cast iron railings form a feature of the south-west corner. Gravestones set into path leading to church door. This is an important small open area opening onto a narrow medieval street.

Sources consulted:

B. Cherry and N. Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England, London Vol. l: The Cities of London and Westminster', London, 1985; George Godwin & John Britton 'The Churches of London: A history and description of the Ecclesiastical Edifices of the Metropolis, Volume II', London, 1839; Simon Bradley & Nikolaus Pevsner, 'The Buildings of England, London 1: The City of London', 1997 (1999 ed.); Philip Norman, 'The London City Churches, Their Use, Their Preservation and Their Extended Use', The London Society, (1920s); London Diocesan Advisory Committee for the Care of Churches data

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