St George Botolph Lane

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.

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St George Botolph Lane (not individually identified on sixteenth-century “Agas” map/Map of Early Modern London) was originally built at least as long ago as the twelfth century, being referred to in a deed of 1180 (as “St. George’s in Estchepe”).  It was renovated in the late fourteenth century, in 1360, and again in the early seventeenth, in 1627.  Adam Bamme, Mayor of London, died in office in 1397, and was buried in the church  (whereupon Dick Whittington was appointed to succeed him as Mayor).  Many of the church’s monuments were, as Stow put it, “well preserved from spoil” (during the Reformation of the mid-sixteenth century).

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The church burned down in the  Great Fire of 1666, and was subsequently rebuilt by Wren in 1671-6, using material from “Old  St Paul’s”, only to be allowed to fall into disrepair, and declared an unsafe structure and demolished in 1904, when the parish was merged with St Mary-at-Hill.

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It is one of the twenty-one lost Wren churches.

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Essentially nothing now remains of it  at its former site, other than the name, which lives on in that of St George’s Lane, …

Parish boundary marker (1)

… and parish boundary markers in  Botolph Alley and on Pudding Lane.  Two seventeenth-century chairs salvaged from the church survive, in St Margaret Pattens.

George was martyred in the fourth century, and made the patron saint of England in the fourteenth.  Surprisingly, this was the only church in the City of London ever dedicated to him.

 

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