St Andrew by the Wardrobe

Another in the series on historic churches in the City of London …

By the time of the Great Fire of London in 1666, there were over a hundred parish churches and other places of Christian worship within and immediately without the walls of  the City, despite a number having been closed down during the Reformation. To be precise, according to  Parish Clerks’ records, there were 97 churches within the walls of the City, and 16 without, making a total of 113.


St Andrew-by-the-Wardrobe was originally built sometime around the turn of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, at which time it was known as St Andrew Castle Baynard.  It changed its name after the Royal Wardrobe was built nearby in the fourteenth century,  in 1361, and is  shown by the “Wardrop”, between “Pole’s Church”  to the north-east and “Black fryers” to the south-west, on the  sixteenth-century “Agas” map/Map of Early Modern London. It was subsequently restored in the early seventeenth century, in 1627.

St Andrew by the Wardrobe

The church was burned  down in the Great Fire of 1666, and rebuilt by Wren between 1685-95, only to be gutted  by bombing on the night of 29th December,  1940, and rebuilt again in 1961.

St Andrew Castle Baynard (3)

St Andrew Castle Baynard

In the interior are a pulpit and font salvaged from  St Matthew, Friday Street, after the Great Fire.

Dissolution document (St Andrew's) - Copy

Also in the interior are a copy of the sixteenth-century document authorising the dissolution of Blackfriars Priory, which stood nearby, …

Blackfriars Priory in 1530 (St Andrew's) - Copy

… and an artist’s impression of the priory and its surroundings before the dissolution.


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