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Billingsgate Market, London

4.1
#78 of 414 in Shopping in London
Billingsgate Fish Market is located in Poplar in London. It is the United Kingdom's largest inland fish market. It takes its name from Billingsgate, a ward in the south-east corner of the City of London, where the riverside market was originally established. In its original location in the 19th century, Billingsgate was the largest fish market in the world.
City of LondonBillingsgate Wharf, close to Lower Thames Street, became the centre of a fish market during the 16th and 17th centuries but did not become formally established until an Act of Parliament in 1699.
In 1850, the market according to Horace Jones, "consisted only of shed buildings... The open space on the north of the well-remembered Billingsgate Dock was dotted with low booths and sheds, with a range of wooden houses with a piazza in front on the west, which served the salesmen and fishmongers as shelter, and for the purposes of carrying on their trade." In that year the market was rebuilt to a design by J.B. Bunning, the City architect.
Bunning's buildings was soon found to be insufficient for the increased trade, and in 1872 the Corporation obtained an Act to rebuild and enlarge the market, which was done to plans by Bunning's successor as City architect Sir Horace Jones. The new site covered almost twice the area of the old, incorporating Billingsgate Stairs and Wharf and Darkhouse Lane. Work began in 1874, and the new market was opened by the Lord Mayor on 20 July 1877. The new buildings, Italianate in style, had on their long frontages towards Thames Street the river, a pedimented centre and continuous arcade, flanked at each end by a pavilion tavern. The general market, on a level with Thames Street, had an area of about 30,000 square feet, and was covered with louvre glass roofs, 43ft high at the ridge. A gallery 30ft wide was allocated to the sale of dried fish, while the basement, served as a market for shellfish.
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
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  • It was clean enough, I honestly thought it would be really bad,, was surprised how good it was and the shopping experience was great you can actually talk to them and negotiate the price  more »
  • Nothing much more to say than this really. Like everyone else in London, had long-standing intentions to get up at 2am and drive there. Finally did it. Was great. But felt jet-lagged for a day...  more »

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