Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Hidden London: The King's Wardrobe
Blue plaque commemorating the original King's Wardrobe
I can't express how much I love this small, tucked-away gem just steps away from St Paul's. It's almost impossible to find. We certainly wouldn't have stumbled across it had it not been for yet another London Walk (and no, they're not paying me to endorse their service - yet, anyway!).
The small square is accessed via a gangway which cuts through a row of narrow houses. And to find the gangway, you need to navigate the maze-like streets of old London, passing by traditional pubs, decrepit passage-ways and ancient churches. If it wasn't for the screech of buses from nearby streets, you could almost believe you were back in Edwardian London.
Although the original building -- purchased by King Edward for all his ceremonial robes -- was destroyed in the great fire of 1666, a blue plaque marks the spot. Surrounded by old structures with shade-dappled flagstones, you may feel like you're in a different world -- but you're not alone. Like all good historical locations, the courtyard has a resident ghost: a lady in white who silently drifts from building to building.