Make the most of London

 

What is the strange contraption in St Magnus the Martyr church?

Posted by Susan Baker, London Guided Walks tour Guide on Saturday, January 4, 2020 Under: Great Fire of London

What is the strange contraption in St Magnus the Martyr church?

As you enter the church of St Magnus the Martyr, just to the east of London Bridge, you would be forgiven for missing this strange wooden contraption to the right.  What is it?  Not a mobile pop up food stall.  It’s a very early fire engine.  How appropriate it should be in this church as a reminder of the dangers of fire, particularly in medieval London.

St Magnus was the second church to be destroyed in the Great Fire of London – the Monument being built on the site of the first - St Margaret’s New Fish Street.  This engine was developed in the late 17th/early 18th century – so just after the Great Fire of London. It originally belonged to St Michael Crooked Lane (now part of the parish of St Magnus) which was demolished in 1831 to make way for the creation of one of the few non-medieval roads in the City, King William Street, built as the approach to the new London Bridge.

The Great Fire of London started very early on the morning of Sunday 2nd September 1666 in a bakery in Pudding Lane, just to the east of the Monument.  Over 4 days it led to one of the greatest  disasters in the history of the City of London – over 80% of it was destroyed in the fire.

Why did it cause so much devastation? No fire brigade existed.  People relied mainly on leather buckets and squirts (basically small hand pumps).  There were some fire engines but not as “sophisticated” as the one in St Magnus – they had no hoses, were large, unwieldy and pretty useless, being very difficult to manoeuvre and use in the narrow streets crowded with panicking people trying to escape the flames. 

Come on one of our Great Fire of London walks to find out more about the damage the fire wreaked, how it affected the people and the whole look of the City and changed fire prevention/control.   Private tours also available, including school group.


In : Great Fire of London 


Tags: great fire of london  city of london  church  susan 
comments powered by Disqus

Tags

"online bookings' cpd #earthrise 17th 1930s 50th a abbey adele afternoon afternoon tea age ages alastair ancient and animals annie anniversary apps architecture arsenal art arts attack awards baker bank bankside barbican bathhouses bazalgette beasts bishopsgate blitz bombers books borough bowie breakfast brewery brick bridge britain british bronze bronze age brunch burger burlesque buses cabaret cake canal canary captain carl carol caroline cathedral cemetery cenotaph century chapman charles charlton cheap cheapside cheese childhood chips chiswick chocolate christmas church city city of london clerkenwell cocktails coffee coffeehouses concert corporate covent covent garden covid-19 crime cross crown cruise david day december deptford dick dickens dinner do dock dockland museum dragons dreamtime earth eat eating eats ecommerce edward edwin egypt end ernst event events exhibition exhibitions facebook fairytale fall family fantastic farringdon february festival film finance fire first fiscus florence folklore food for francis free friars gallery galliard garden george georgian german germany gibb gift grade great greenhithe greenwich group guided guides half hall halsk harle harry potter havering havering hoard hawksmoor hazel heroes hidden highbury hill hilton history holloway homes hot hotel house how i ian ianmcd ice cream icelandic ii iii in inigo islington italian iv jack jack the ripper james jenny jewels johns jones joseph katharines kelly kenneth kew gardens kids kidstours killer kim kings kingston lambeth lane lewis lights limestone literature liverpool locations londinium london london bridge london's londoners lunch lutyens magnus market markets martyr mary maufe mayfair mcdiarmid measure medical medieval memorial middle millennium mock-tudor modern montague monument moorgate mosaic murder murderers museum museum of london docklands music musicals n7 national gallery national history museum ned new newcomen news nhs nichols night nightingale nurse of old street oliver open opera pancakes pandemic panoramic park parties path pauls people photo photograhy photography photos pizza places plays plumstead podcast poetry pokemon polly pop poplar prince priory private tours pub public purbeck qe2 queen queenhithe quirky recording reid religion rembrandt renaissance restoration ripper river road rob roman roundhouse royal saga saxon sculpture scupture seacole second serial sewers siemens sir smartphone smith smithfield smithfields soap soho somme south southbank southwark spitalfields spy squirrels ss st statue stories street stuart studios subscription summer susan sydenham tate tea term thames thamesmeade the theatre thiepval things things to do thrifty thriftytheatre to tour tours tower travel truman tudor tumblety twelfth twist und underground update v&a ve victoria victorian victorian london viking vouchers wales walk walking walks wall war water werner wharf wheeler whitechapel wilde wildlife willelm william wine winter women wood woodland woolwich world wyatt york 1888 2019 2020

LONDON GUIDED WALKS:

LEARN MORE:

CONNECT WITH US:

USEFUL LINKS:

Site by Hazel  |  Photographs by Hazel or Ian