St. Sepulchre Without Newgate Church, London

#148 of 263 in Historic Sites in London
Church · Hidden Gem · Tourist Spot
St Sepulchre-without-Newgate, also known as the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, is an Anglican church in the City of London. It is located on Holborn Viaduct, almost opposite the Old Bailey. In medieval times it stood just outside the now-demolished old city wall, near the Newgate. It has been a living of St John's College, Oxford, since 1622 and is part of the area designated the "Newgate Street Conservation Area" by the City of London Corporation.
The original Saxon church on the site was dedicated to St Edmund the King and Martyr. In 1137 it was given to the Priory of St Bartholomew. During the Crusades in the 12th century the church was renamed St Edmund and the Holy Sepulchre, in reference to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, by soldiers who passed by the church on the way to the Holy Lands. The name eventually became contracted to St Sepulchre.
The church is today the largest parish church in the City. It was completely rebuilt in the 15th century but was gutted by the Great Fire of London in 1666, which left only the outer walls, the tower and the porch standing -. Modified in the 18th century, the church underwent extensive restoration in 1878. It narrowly avoided destruction in the Second World War, although the 18th-century watch-house in its churchyard (erected to deter grave-robbers) was completely destroyed and had to be rebuilt.
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St. Sepulchre Without Newgate Church reviews

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  • Rebuilt after the Great Fire, this Wren Church is in itself interesting to see. I came to see the Executioners bell of St Sepulchre which is a 350 year old artefact. It was to remind the condemned of....  more »
  • Regrettably it was closed when I tried to visit on a Friday lunchtime. Opposite the old Bailey. Did see some interesting plaque relating to the Gurkhas.  more »
  • Grade 1 listed. Was originally a Saxon Church dedicated to St Edmund The King and Martyr. In 1137 it was given to the Priory of St Bart's. During the 12th century during The Crusades it was renamed St Edmund and the Holy Sepulchre's in Jerusalem. Over time it was shortened. Although now considered to be in the City, it stood just outside of the now demolished medieval city walls near Newgate. Because of this it is also known as St Sepulchre's Without Newgate. It is now part of the Newgate Street Conservation Area. During the 15th century it was rebuilt and reopened in 1670. It has a Gothic tower which houses 12 bells. Known in the nursery rhyme Oranges and Lemons as The Bells of Old Bailey. They were originally rung the night before condemned prisoners were due to be executed at Newgate Prison and again in the morning when they were led to the gallows either at Newgate or Tyburn in Westminster. The interior is from 1834. Has a chequered black and white floor. With mahoosive white columns which hold up the coffered ceiling. The North Isle is dominated by a mahoosive black and gold piped organ from 1670. Has a Musicians Chapel with 4 windows dedicated to Sir Henry Wood, John Ireland, Dame Nellie Melba and Walter Carroll. Set within the ornate perimeter railings and sat atop of the perimeter wall, is London's 1st drinking fountain erected 1859. Complete with 2 wee chained cups within it's basin and a shell above from which the water used to emerge. Unfortunately, it's no longer in working order. It was placed there to discourage Londoners from imbibing in alcohol. In close proximity to Central Criminal Court (Old Bailey), Bart's Pathology Museum, Temple Church, Museum of London, Barbican, St Paul's Cathedral, The Golden Boy of Pye Corner, The River Thames, The Millennium Bridge etc. Nearest stations are Temple, Blackfriars, Mansion House, St Paul's, Barbican, and City Thameslink.
  • Good pictutes of this old building and near by in surrounding area other beautifull buildings.

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