In the mid 13th century 17 was part of a single property on the site of 16-18 (see 16). During the later 13th century and the first half of the 14th century 17 formed part of the same property as or was associated with 18 (q.v.), but, certainly during the latter part of ths period, 17 was a tenement which could be distinguished from 18 and this may also have been the case in the mid- 13th century. When it can be identified as a separate property 17 was bounded by 16 on the N., 18 on the S., and 105/16 on the E.
In 1858 the property was part of Mercers' Hall.
17 was probably represented by the houses in Ironmonger Lane which by his testament, proved in 1294, Theynotus le Bokerel left to be sold after his death. The property was probably represented by the two messuages or messuage and two shops which he had held in 1281 and 1289 (see 18). In 1309 Christiana, daughter of the late John atte Churche, citizen, and his wife Katharine granted 17, described as her share of a tenement with houses built on it between 18 on the S., 16 on the N. and 105/16 on the E., to Reginald le Boqueler, citizen, who paid her a sum of money and was to pay a rent of a clove to the grantor and her heirs and another rent to Adam Bras and his heirs as lords of the fee. Bras held 18, from which evidently 17 had been divided. In 1314 Christiana quitclaimed in 17 to Reginald and his wife Maud, and in 1319 Richard, son of Nicholas Robert, and Joan, daughter of John atte Churche, quitclaimed to Reginald in the same property, now said once to have belonged to Theynyne le Bokeler. By his testament, proved in 1325, Reginald le Bokeler left the tenement, shops, and solar(s) which he had acquired from the daughters of John atte Churche to his wife Alice for the term of her life with successive reversions to his son Solomon, his daughters Maud, Cristina, and Isabel, and their heirs. Reginald had been accustomed to work in the property and in his testament confirmed the tenure of his former apprentice, Stephen Pesemerssh, who held a shop there for a term of 11 years from 1324. (fn. 1)
Adam Bras evidently had had a quit-rent of £1. 10s. from the tenement, and in 1330 his son John Braz granted it to the newly-founded Elsing Spital. In 1349 the rent was included in William de Elsing's bequest to the hospital he had established. In 1355 the prior of the hospital took naam for arrears of this rent, of which he claimed to have been seised by Isabel Bokeler, from a tenement of Cristina Purcere. (fn. 2)
The title to 17 descended from Reginald le Bokeler, citizen and girdler, to his daughter Isabel, who in 1359 with her husband, Richard le Greyndere, granted the tenement with solar(s) and cellar(s) to Roger de Flete, citizen and draper, and Edmund Fraunk, clerk. Five days later Cristina widow of Thomas de Ismongereslane, citizen and locular' (presumably a cofferer or locksmith), quitclaimed in the property to de Flete and Fraunk. (fn. 3)
Later the property probably belonged to William Holbech, citizen and draper, and was probably among the tenements which in his will, dated 1365 and proved 1367, he left to his wife Maud. By his will Holbech also left 5 marks rent from his houses in this parish to Dom. William Wrangle to celebrate masses during the term of his life. John Frere, citizen and wiredrawer, and his wife Rose purchased the tenement representing 17 from Holbech's widow Maud. In his will, dated 1388 and proved in 1399 Frere left the property, now consisting of two tenements, to Rose, who in 1391 granted the tenements to John Norman, citizen and goldsmith, and his wife Lettice. Norman and his wife immediately let the S. tenement to Rose for the term of her life and granted to her and her assigns a quit-rent of £2 p.a. from the N. tenement. When Rose died in 1404 she was probably still living in the S. tenement. (fn. 4) In 1412 John Norman had the title to the property transferred to himself, his wife Joan, and his assigns. John Shellegh of Bixley, Kent, and Richard Gerold, citizen and grocer, acted as intermediaries in this transaction. By his will, proved in 1418, he directed that the reversion was to be sold to Richard Osbarn and Thomas Macchyng, to whom in 1419 Norman's widow Joan granted the property. Norman's daughter Margery with her husband John Pomis, citizen and goldsmith, then released all claim in it. In 1423 Osbarn and Macchyng granted the two tenements with houses, shops, and solar(s) representing 17 to Norman's widow Joan for the term of her life, with remainder to John Souman, leather seller, his wife Alice, John Parker, cutler, John Colbrook, tailor, and the heirs and assigns of Souman. In 1424 John Lagenham, shearman, and his wife Alice quitclaimed to Joan and to those with the reversionary interest in a shop with a solar over it forming part of this property, of which Lagenham may formerly have been a tenant. (fn. 5)
Subsequently 17 is described as a single tenement. In 1441 John Souman granted it and his goods and chattels to Thomas Gloucestre, esquire, Richard Parker, clerk, John Hudgrey, John Gladwyn, John Byrom, and their heirs and assigns. In 1459 Byrom, as the surviving feoffee, granted the tenement to Katharine Souman, widow, for the term of her life with remainder to William Chacombe, his son John Chacombe, citizen and mercer, Thomas Eytburhale, clerk, Richard Clarell, John Grey, Guy Keteriche, and their heirs and assigns in fulfilment of the same John Chacombe's will. The intent of this transaction seems to have been that John Chacombe should enjoy the property. His widow Katharine married Robert Langford and in 1475 they and John Chacombe's son, John Chacombe, quitclaimed in the tenement to Robert Hadley, valettus corone, and Alan Newman, citizen and goldbeater. In 1498 Roger Bafford, mercer, lived there. In 1505 William Campion, grocer, John Corbet, shearman, and Thomas Fissher, grocer, granted the tenement to Nicholas Alwyn, alderman and mercer, who by his will, proved in 1506, left it to the hospital of St. Thomas of Acre. A claim to the property descended from Richard Hadley, citizen and grocer, to his son and heir John Hadley whose widow Anne with her husband John Giles of London, gentleman, in 1509 quitclaimed in the tenement to the hospital of St. Thomas of Acre. (fn. 6)
By 1524 this tenement was known as the 'Pyked Hache'. (fn. 7) In 1517-19 the tenement was wrongly said to have been granted to the hospital by Richard Hill and had formerly been held by Thomas Lynton for £3. 6s. 8d. p.a. rent. James Nelson was named as tenant in 1518. Thomas Poynes paid £2. 13s. 4d. p.a. rent for the tenement between 1517 and 1519, the property seems to have been vacant between 1519 and 1526, John Askew paid £1. 10s. rent between 1527 and 1529, Gregory Langford probably paid the same rent between 1529 and 1531, and Thomas Manne probably paid £1. 10s. rent between 1531 and 1535 and £2 from c. 1536 onwards. The hospital of St. Thomas of Acre was dissolved in 1538 and the Mercers' Company purchased the tenement from the Crown in 1542, apparently with the assistance of William Dauntesey (cf. 13-15). (fn. 8)
Thomas Man still held the tenement in September 1543, when it was agreed by the Mercers' Company that Thomas Sutton, citizen and mercer, should have a lease under which the tenant was to repair the house except for its principal timbers. Man was probably still living there in 1544. Sutton's lease, at a rent of £2 ran for a term of 21 years from 1544. He died in 1556-7 (see 18A) and was succeeded as rent payer by his widow Anne Sutton, who in 1566, when she was dwelling in the house, was granted a lease for a further term of 21 years. The residence of both Thomas and Anne Sutton probably included 18A, of which they had the freehold. Anne died in 1571 and her assign, Hugh Boile, mercer, paid the rent from 1577 to 1601, when he was succeeded by his widow, Margaret. The 'Picked Hatch' was in the occupation of Hugh's daughter, Helen Boyle, in 1609, when the Mercers' Company granted a lease of 21 years at £2 rent to William Sotherne, citizen and mercer, and his wife Margaret. The tenement included a long shop which by 1609 had been divided into two shops occupied by John Thornton, glazier, and Ratcliffe Poole, tailor. The Sothernes assigned their estate in the property to Thornton, who in 1610 was granted a new lease of the tenement with its shops, cellars, and solars for a term of 30 years at the old rent and in consideration of his expenditure in rebuilding. Thornton's widow Mary paid the rent from 1622, and payments made to her for glazing at Mercers' Hall show that she carried on her husband's business. Anne Eaton, widow, was recorded as paying the rent from 1629 to 1640. In 1632 Abraham Wall, glazier, occupied the tenement and in the following year, after protracted negotiations and in consideration of his expenditure on repairs and alterations and the future payment of a fine of £80, was granted a lease for a term of 21 years at the old rent of £2 commencing in 1640. Wall died in 1638 and left his interest in the property to his brother, William Wall, a plumber. Abraham Wall's executors paid the rent to the Mercers' Company from 1640 to 1648, when they were succeeded by William Ball, citizen and clothworker. In 1651 the tenement was said to have been divided into 3 dwellings and was said to be worth a fine of £150 for a lease of 31 years at the old rent. In 1652 Ball succeeded in obtaining a lease for 31 years commencing in 1661 for a fine of £140, and continued to hold the property, still known as the Picked Hatch, up to the Great Fire. (fn. 9)
The division of the property into 3 dwellings was probably undertaken during the 1630s by Abraham Wall, and in the list of tithepayers in 1638 17 appears to be covered by 3 entries: Mr. Wall (presumably Abraham Wall), whose house was worth £9 rent; Mr. Hobell, whose house was worth £8 rent; and Mr. Deacon, whose house was worth £4 rent. These three houses appear to be represented in the Hearth Tax assessment of 1666 by the following: a house of 7 hearths occupied by John Godfrey, the clerk of the Mercers' Company, who presumably also occupied the house to the rear at the N. end of 105/16 (q.v.) which he held rent-free from the company; an empty house of 6 hearths; and a house of 4 hearths occupied by Francis How, glazier. (fn. 10)
After the Great Fire the company appears to have rebuilt the property at its own expense. In 1671 the upper storey was used as the Mercers' 'pastry', below which was a little tenement let to Robert Ware for a term of 21 years from 1671 at £10 rent. (fn. 11)