Historical Gazetteer of London Before the Great Fire Cheapside; Parishes of All Hallows Honey Lane, St Martin Pomary, St Mary Le Bow, St Mary Colechurch and St Pancras Soper Lane. Originally published by Centre for Metropolitan History, London, 1987.
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Thirteenth to sixteenth century
In 1283 John de Edelmeton left his tenement in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch, with a cellar towards the street (versus vicum) (? Bordhaw Lane), to his servant Geoffrey de Edelmeton, if the latter paid £13. 6s. 8d. (20 marks) of the testator's debts. In 1305 Geoffrey Patrik held the tenement to the S. of 105/2. In 1309, as Geoffrey Patrick of Edmonton (Edelmeton), citizen and cutler, he leased a cellar under his tenement in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch to Geoffrey de Brandon, citizen and mercer, for 12 years, for a certain sum. At the same time he agreed to convey the whole property to de Brandon in 1311, for £40, less de Brandon's expenses and the 6 marks (£4) already paid for the lease of the cellar. The property (and possibly the cellar) lay between 145/39 to the W., 105/2 to the N., Bordhaw Lane to the E. and the church of St. Pancras to the S. A few days later, in 1309, Geoffrey de Edelmeton and his wife Isabel granted the whole property to Geoffrey de Brandon and his wife Cecilia. The E. boundary was now given as the messuage of St. Mary Spital (? 105/5). Isabel widow of Geoffrey Patrik quitclaimed her dower in the same in 1314. In 1310 Geoffrey de Brandon came to separate agreements with his neighbours to the W., Richard of Gloucester (145/39), and to the N., John le Leutour (105/2), over rebuilding their party walls. The stone wall between this tenement and 145/39, in the parishes of St. Mary Colechurch and St. Pancras, was in ruins, and de Brandon agreed to rebuild it, Richard of Gloucester contributing £1 to the cost. Thereafter the wall was to be common to both. De Brandon also agreed to build a (? new) stone wall between his tenement and 105/2, stretching from 145/39 on the W. to Bordhaw Lane on the E. John le Leutour contributed 13s. 4d. to the cost, and thereafter the wall was to be common to both, to be repaired at their joint expense. (fn. 1)
In 1310 Roger de Eure, citizen and ironmonger, granted to Geoffrey de Brandone a tenement formerly of Adam le Chaundeler in le Bordhawe, between de Brandon's tenement on the W., Bordhaw Lane on the N., the tenement of Roger de Brunne (part 4) and William de Garton (145/16) on the E., and the tenement of William de Garton and St. Pancras church on the S. The former history of this tenement is given under 4, below; at a later date there seems to have been some readjustment of these boundaries, so that the remaining part of 4 once more extended to abut on the church. In 1317 Geoffrey de Brandon confirmed that Janyn Dacre, citizen, should have free access to his (Janyn's) tenements in the lane called le Bordhawgh, without hindrance; neither was to close up the lane without the other's consent. Janyn could have been a tenant of de Brandon, or of some other property in the lane; he is not otherwise recorded here. In 1319-20 Alice, widow and executrix of Geoffrey de Brandon, and her co-executors agreed with William of St. Albans, chandler (candellar') that the latter should build a house with a solar on a plot of land belonging to himself and also on a plot belonging to Thomas de Brandon, son of Geoffrey. After the building the ground of the whole (illa placea terre predicte iuxta terram) should belong to William, and the upper part (altera placea in superiore parte) to Thomas. William was to make and repair the house at its first building at his own expense, and Thomas should maintain it thereafter. William already had a solar next to Thomas's entry, above the latter's ground, and granted that if he rebuilt it at any time he would do so at his own expense up to a height of 9 ft. (2.74 m.). Both parties agreed that a latrine there common to both tenements should be mended or cleaned at their joint expense. Alice and her co-executors gave William a sum for Thomas's share of the expenses. This building probably took place on the ground abutting the church, formerly of Roger de Eure, and the intermixture that resulted probably explains some inconsistencies in the descriptions of the bounds of both properties. (fn. 2)
In 1345 Thomas, son of Geoffrey de Brandon, granted to Alice, widow of Geoffrey, all the tenements he had inherited from his father in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch, which the latter had acquired from Geoffrey de Edelmeton and his wife Isabel and from Roger de Eure, for ever. The tenements lay between 145/39 to the W., 105/2, Bordhaw Lane, and the tenements late of William of St. Albans, chandler, (105/4) to the N., the tenements late of William of St. Albans and of William de Garton (145/16) to the E., and St. Pancras church to the S. A few days later Thomas quitclaimed to Alice in the same, and by her will, dated and proved in 1349, she left the tenement in which she lived in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch, acquired as above, to her nephew Jordan de Elsyng, citizen and mercer, and his wife Margaret. Jordan was to pay yearly £4. 6s. 8d. (6 1/2 marks) for a chantry in the church of St. Thomas of Acre, for the souls of herself, Geoffrey de Brandon, John de Orleton, and others. John de Orleton had evidently been Alice's husband, presumably after Geoffrey de Brandon, though whether in the interval between 1320 and 1345 or between 1345 and 1349 is not clear. In 1369 Jordan de Elsyngge, citizen and mercer, granted to Roger Streyt, citizen and ironmonger, the tenement and houses which he and his late wife Margaret had had by the will of Alice de Brandon, widow of John de Orleton, late citizen, in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch. Three days later Jordan quitclaimed to Roger, and two days after that Roger granted to Jordan the chamber over the solar, called le Warechaumbr', between the hall and the kitchen of the tenement Roger had by Jordan's grant in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch beside the Conduit, to hold for life, with free access by day and night, for a sum of money paid. (fn. 3)
In 1373 Roger Streyte granted to John de Wynchecombe, citizen and armourer, and his wife Nicola all his tenement and houses in Bordhaw Lane, formerly of Jordan de Elsyngge and before that of Alice de Brandon. The property lay between 145/39 to the W., 105/2 to the N., the lane and the tenement (late) of William de Hathfeld, chandler (105/4), to the E., and the church of St. Pancras to the S. In 1397 John de Wynchecombe granted the same property to his son Thomas. Thomas Wynchecombe, clerk, granted his tenement in Bordhaw Lane to John Chadde, cutler, and John Pope, draper, citizens, in 1414. Richard Longe of London and his wife Margaret, sister of Thomas Wynchecombe, quitclaimed to Chadde and Pope in May 1414, and a few days later Chadde and Pope granted the tenements to Margaret to hold for life, bearing all charges, with reversion to themselves. Margaret was probably dead by 1419, when Pope quitclaimed in the tenement to Chadde. Thomas Elsyng, citizen and mercer, kinsman and heir of Alice de Brandon (being son of Robert Elsyng, son of William Elsyng, brother of Alice) quitclaimed to Chadde in the same property, with bounds as before, in 1427. By his will of 1428, proved in 1435, John Chadde left the same property to the master and brothers of St. Thomas of Acre, to observe obits for Alice de Brandon, Thomas Wynchecombe, and the testator. (fn. 4)
In 1517-18 the house of St. Thomas of Acre was receiving £2 rent p.a. from a great tenement on the south side of Cheap, in a small lane opposite the door of St. Thomas of Acre, let to Robert Beverley for 30 years, and formerly in the tenure of William Browne at £3. 6s. 8d. (5 marks) p.a. Beverley paid this rent from 1517 to 1536, when he was succeeded by Thomas Barett. A 30-year lease of the property at the same rent was granted to Robert Downe in 1534 to run from 1529. The hospital of St. Thomas of Acre was dissolved in 1538. Baret or Barrett remained in occupation until at least 1542, but Downe was presumably responsible for the rent, which was then paid to the Crown. (fn. 5) In 1542 Henry VIII granted this and numerous other properties formerly belonging to the hospital to the Mercers' Company; this was described as two messuages and tenements late in the tenure of Thomas Barrete, afterwards demised to Robert Downe, in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch. Later in 1542 the Mercers were licensed to alienate the same two messuages to Bartholomew Baron, mercer. The occupants at that time were Thomas Barret and Robert Bynlowes, and the properties lay between two new-built messuages of Bartholomew Baron (145/39, 105/2) on the W. and N., a tenement belonging to the Skinners Company (105/4), now also occupied by Robert Dowen, on the E., and St. Pancras church on the S. Baron paid £32. 8s. 7d. for the grant, and promised to acquit the Mercers of the 4s. annual rent or tenth reserved from this property by the Crown in its grant. From 1543 to 1548 he paid this rent to the company. In 1546 Bartholomew Baron had licence to alienate two mesuages, lately held by Thomas Barrette in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch to Robert Browne, the lessee. Possibly Browne is an error for Downe, though there was a Robert Browne, goldsmith, with an interest nearby (see 2) c. 1551-6. (fn. 6)
Sixteenth and seventeenth centuries
Bartholomew Baron (d. 1548) sold the two tenements late of St. Thomas of Acre to Robert Downe or Dowen, citizen and ironmonger, to whom in 1550 the Mercers' Company released the obligation to pay 4s. annual rent. On his death in 1556 Robert Downe was seised of 2 messuages with shops, late occupied by Thomas Barret and Robert Bynlowes, in Bordhaw Lane, once belonging to the house of Acre, held of the Crown in chief by the service of 1/40th of a knight's fee, and worth £4. 13s. 4d. p.a. clear. Downe also held 105/4, late of the Skinners' Company, and 105/6-7, late of John Roodes of Stanstead, Herts., also in Bordhaw. He left them all to his wife Margery for life or while she remained single, with remainder to his daughter Anne and Richard Chamberleyn, her husband, and their issue. Margery then held the premises, and after her death Anne (d. 1561) and Richard Chamberlaine held them. By his will, dated 1563, the latter left all the property to his eldest son Robert, charged with the payment of £10 p.a. to each of his 7 brothers and sisters. The total value of the estate was £87. 10s., but it was said that most of the houses were now out of repair and must be looked after, as the tenants or occupants received all the profits and would do little in the way of repairs 'unless sharply called upon'. Richard Chamberlaine died in 1566. In 1576 his son Robert sold the tenements in Bordhaw Lane (105/3- 6) to William Chapman, citizen and ironmonger, and his wife Joan. Chapman and Robert Herne, merchant tailor, then occupied some or all of 3-6. By his will of 1579 Chapman left these properties to his younger son Robert, who was then less than 7 years old. The property formerly belonging to Acre was worth £3 clear and the others (4-6) £2. (fn. 7)
At some date the block of property 3-6 appears to have been broken up into several separate ownerships. Three separate freeholds within Bordhaw Lane (apart from 2 and 8-9 A-B on Cheapside) are identifiable by the time of the Great Fire. The smallest of these lay on the W. side of the lane, between the property corresponding to all or most of 2 to the N. and that corresponding to all or most of 3 to the S. It had evidently once been part of one of these, but it is not certain which. It is described below as 3A. The second, much larger, property on the W. side of the lane is described below as 3B. The property on the E. side of the lane extended from the church on the S. to 8A-B on the N., and is described under the heading of 4-6.
In 1558 William Jackman occupied a house or tenement, worth £1. 6s. 8d. p.a., which appears to have been in Bordhaw Lane, next or near to that occupied by William Chapman. Possibly Jackman was Chapman's tenant, though he could have been the owner. In 1571-4 Richard Rider occupied a house worth the same and in the same position in the assessment list. Mr. Bishop appears to have had the same house in 1602, 1612, and 1618-24. By his will of 1630, proved in 1631, Nathaniel Bishopp, citizen and mercer, left his dwelling-house with rooms, cellars and solars in 'Borehole Lane' in the parish of St. Mary Colechurch to his kinsman Edward Mynne, girdler, in tail male, with remainder to another kinsman John Rust in similar tail. John Rust and his sister Hester were to be allowed to live in the house for one year, with the use of all the implements, for £6, paid quarterly. It is not clear who occupied the property in 1638 but it was probably Mr. Miller, whose house was valued at £3 p.a. Edward Minn or Minnun sold the tenement in 'Borthall Alley' in Cheapside to Thomas Barnes of London, citizen and haberdasher, whose tenant Thomas Avis occupied 3A, a house with 3 hearths, in 1662-3, early 1666, and at the time of the Great Fire. By his will dated 1663, Thomas Barnes, who died between March and May 1667, left this tenement to his wife Elizabeth for life. A foundation 'in an alley the lower end of Cheapside' was surveyed for Mrs. Elizabeth Barnes in August 1667; it measured some 20 ft. (6.10 m.) E.-W. by 13 ft. (3.96 m.) N.-S., and was bounded to the N. by Sir William Backhouse's tenement (2), and to the S. by Edmund Grice's tenement (3B). Elizabeth Barnes died in December 1667 and it is not known who held the tenement after that. (fn. 8)
It is not clear who held this property after the death of William Chapman. He appeared as tithe-payer for a house valued at £1. 10s. p.a. in 1558 and 1571. In 1574 communicants in his household were himself, his wife, and 6 others. Mr. Avery may have held the same property in 1602, but this is far from certain. Mr. Mattingley held a tenement or house, valued at £12 p.a., in this area in 1638, and in 1637 John Mattingly was said to have let out a room at his house to Mr. King, vintner, to enlarge a house in a dark alley and make a tavern. This division was thought to have reduced the value of the property, making it suitable only for a poor occupant who might prove a charge on the parish. In 1656 3B belonged to Edmund Grice and his wife Mary, who leased it to Foulke Denny and his wife Mary for 21 years at £20 rent and £40 fine. Fulk Denny occupied a house with 6 hearths in 1662-3. After his death, which must have occurred soon after, his widow married Thomas Fletcher, who occupied the house, now said to have only 5 hearths, early in 1666 and at the time of the Fire. A foundation was surveyed for Grice or Grise in August 1667, measuring 39 ft. (11.89 m.) N.-S. by 25 ft. (7.62 m.) E.-W., bounded to the S. by St. Pancras church and to the N. by Mr. Barnes, to the W. by Alderman Vanham (145/39) and to the E. by Mr. Ledgit (see 4-6). After negotiation, Fletcher surrendered his lease to Grice in 1668, in return for Grice's assigning him the lease of 4-6 (of which Grice was lessee and Fletcher his sub-tenant). (fn. 9)