St Katharine by the Tower

Another in the series on the historic churches of the out-parishes 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. There were a further twelve  in the out-parishes of Middlesex (north of the river) and Surrey (south of the river).

St Katharine by the Tower on the sixteenth-century “Agas” map (extreme right)

The parish church of St Katharine by the Tower began its life as a collegiate church  constituting part of the Royal  Hospital of St Katharine, which was originally founded by Queen Matilda in 1148, and  subsequently  refounded by Queen Eleanor in 1273.  After the Dissolution of the Monasteries by Henry VIII in the early sixteenth century, the hospital remained in use as such, but the collegiate church became a parish church. 

Site of church in St Katharine’s Dock

The hospital and church were demolished in 1825, to make way for the construction of St Katharine’s Dock, and were then refounded in Regent’s Park, and later refounded again in Limehouse.   The Jacobean pulpit salvaged from the church still survives, in St Katharine’s  in Regent’s Park.

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