10 Trinity Square, Tower Hill
|OS grid reference|
|• Charing Cross||2 mi (3.2 km) W|
|Ceremonial county||Greater London|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
Tower Hill is infamous for the public execution of high status prisoners from the late 14th to the mid 18th century. The execution site on the higher ground north-west of the Tower of London moat is now occupied by Trinity Square Gardens.
Tower Hill also covers a wider area surrounding the Tower of London in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, rising from the north bank of the River Thames to reach a maximum height of 14.5 metres (48 ft) Ordnance Datum. The land was historically part of the Liberties of the Tower of London, an area the Tower authorities controlled to keep clear of any development which would reduce the defensibility of the Tower. Building has encroached to a degree, but a legacy of this control is that much of the hill is still open. The hill includes land on either side of the London Wall, a large remnant of which is visible.
Generally speaking, the name Tower Hill informally applies to those parts of the Tower Liberty that are outside the Tower of London and its moat. Great Tower Hill is the land lying inside (or west) of the line of the London Wall whereas Little Tower Hill is the land outside (or east) of the wall.
Public executions of high-profile traitors and criminals, often attainted peers, as well as innocent Catholics in the 16th century, were carried out on Tower Hill. The backgrounds to these ranged from the Peasants’ Revolt of 1381 to the Wars of the Roses; Lollardism; claims to the throne by Perkin Warbeck and Lambert Simnel; Reformation; Pilgrimage of Grace; Monmouth Rebellion; Jacobite Rising and the Gordon Riots of 1780. Lord Lovat’s execution for high treason in 1747 was the last judicial beheading in England while the final executions on Tower Hill were hangings in 1780. Some 120 executions are chronicled and they include:-
After the abandonment of Tower Hill as a site for public executions, Trinity Square and Gardens were laid out in 1797 by Samuel Wyatt as the setting for Trinity House, completed a year earlier as headquarters of the Corporation of Trinity House.
In the 1880s, a section of the London Underground Circle Line was constructed beneath Trinity Square Gardens. In the first decade of the 20th century small buildings, courts and yards bordering Trinity Square were cleared to make way for the construction of the Port of London Authority headquarters at 10 Trinity Square. Begun in 1912 and completed in 1922, the Grade II* building is now a Four Seasons hotel which opened as such on 26th January 2017.
The Merchant Navy Memorial, First World War section, Grade I-listed, was unveiled by Queen Mary (deputising for her husband, King George V) on 12th December 1928.To avoid overshadowing this, the Grade II* Second World War section is In the form of a sunken garden and was unveiled by HM The Queen on 5th December 1955 while that commemorating merchant seamen killed in the 1982 Falklands War was unveiled on 4th September 2005 by the First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir Alan West.
In October 1933, Reverend P B (“Tubby”) Clayton of All Hallows by the Tower and Dr B R Leftwich published “The Pageant of Tower Hill”, which included the outline of a scheme to improve Tower Hill. In December 1933 the inaugural meeting of the Tower Hill Improvement Fund was held. Lord Wakefield was elected President and launched an appeal at the Guildhall in January 1934.
One of the Trust's first actions was to create a beach on the north bank of the Thames between St Katherine’s Steps and the Tower for families from the East End.
In 1937 the Fund became the Tower Hill Improvement Trust and set about purchasing a number of buildings it considered eyesores. These were demolished in order to provide gardens and open public spaces. Among the buildings demolished was the giant Myer’s tea warehouse, which stood next to All Hallows and blocked the view of the Tower from the west.
During 2001-2003 the Trust part-financed the refurbishment of Trinity Square Gardens.
In June 2006 the Trust's name was shortened to Tower Hill Trust.
The street of Tower Hill, within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, adjoins the City of London at Byward Street and runs eastwards to Minories and Tower Bridge Approach. It replaced Postern Row in the 1880s and was widened and extended a decade later.Tower Hill is in the London congestion charge zone from its junction with Minories westwards.
A pedestrian subway links Tower Hill tube station to the boundary of the Tower of London where the remains of the south tower of the medieval postern gate are visible.
Tower Hill Terrace is the pedestrian way that runs south off Tower Hill to Gloucester Court and also the adjoining paved public space, redeveloped in 2019, atop the Tower Vaults shopping complex.A floor plaque in Tower Vaults commemorates its re-opening in 1991 as the surviving part of the 1864 George Myers built Mazawattee Tea Warehouse, extensively bomb-damaged in Second World War air raids and later demolished.
No. 7 of the original 31 Tower Liberty boundary markers is sited at the bottom of the steps linking Gloucester Court to Tower Hill Terrace and no. 8 is positioned at the base of the circular concrete air duct adjoining Tower Hill.
Immediately east of the Tower of London Welcome Centre on Great Tower Hill are the buried structural remains of the medieval Bulwark Gate and bastion. The lower half of Tower Hill was enclosed in the late 15th century to protect the western entrance to the Tower of London. The large brick bastion commissioned by Edward IV extended part way up Tower Hill from Tower Dock, but was demolished in 1668.
Tower Subway is a tunnel under the Thames running from Tower Hill to Vine Lane in Southwark. The round brick-built entrance building near the Tower of London's ticket office was constructed in 1926 by the London Hydraulic Power Company.The year of 1868 visible on the structure refers to the Tower Subway Act of 1868 which authorised the construction of the tunnel.
The grade II listed former pump house (Tower of London shop) was built in 1863 and designed by the architect Anthony Salvin.
London Buses route 15 east to Blackwall and west to Trafalgar Square runs along Tower Hill. Tower Hill tube station is adjacent and Tower Gateway DLR station close by as is Tower Pier for London River Services.
Alnwick Castle is a castle and country house in Alnwick in the English county of Northumberland. It is the seat of the 12th Duke of Northumberland, built following the Norman conquest and renovated and remodelled a number of times. It is a Grade I listed building and as of 2012 received over 800,000 visitors per year when combined with adjacent attraction The Alnwick Garden.
William Hastings, 1st Baron Hastings KG was an English nobleman. A loyal follower of the House of York during the Wars of the Roses, he became a close friend and one of the most important courtiers of King Edward IV, whom he served as Lord Chamberlain. At the time of Edward's death he was one of the most powerful and richest men in England. He was executed following accusations of treason by Edward's brother and ultimate successor, Richard III. The date of his death is disputed; early histories give 13 June, which is the traditional date.
John de Vere, 13th Earl of Oxford, the second son of John de Vere, 12th Earl of Oxford, and Elizabeth Howard, a first cousin of John Howard, 1st Duke of Norfolk, was one of the principal Lancastrian commanders during the English Wars of the Roses.
Baron Hastings is a title that has been created three times. The first creation was in the Peerage of England in 1290, and is extant. The second creation was in the Peerage of England in 1299, and became extinct on the death of the first holder in c. 1314. The third creation was in the Peerage of England in 1461, and has been in abeyance since 1960.
Wimpole Estate is a large estate containing Wimpole Hall, a country house located within the civil parish of Wimpole, Cambridgeshire, England, about 8+1⁄2 miles southwest of Cambridge. The house, begun in 1640, and its 3,000 acres (12 km2) of parkland and farmland are owned by the National Trust. The estate is regularly open to the public and received over 335,000 visitors in 2019. Wimpole is the largest house in Cambridgeshire.
Henry Grey, 1st Duke of Suffolk, 3rd Marquess of Dorset, was an English courtier and nobleman of the Tudor period. He was the father of Lady Jane Grey, known as "the Nine Days' Queen".
John Tiptoft, 1st Earl of Worcester KG, was an English nobleman and scholar who served as Lord High Treasurer, Lord High Constable of England and Lord Deputy of Ireland. He was known as "the Butcher of England" to his Tudor detractors.
Walter Hungerford, 1st Baron Hungerford of Heytesbury, was created Baron Hungerford of Heytesbury in 1536.
St Mary Magdalen, Milk Street, was a parish church in the City of London, England, dedicated to Jesus' companion Mary Magdalene. Originally constructed in the 12th century, it was destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666 and not rebuilt. The location was converted into a market, then from 1835 to 1879 was the site of the City of London School.
Joan FitzAlan, Countess of Hereford, Countess of Essex and Countess of Northampton was the wife of the 7th Earl of Hereford, 6th Earl of Essex and 2nd Earl of Northampton. She was the mother of Mary de Bohun, the first wife of Henry of Bolingbroke who later reigned as King Henry IV, and Eleanor de Bohun, Duchess of Gloucester. She was the maternal grandmother of King Henry V.
Farleigh Hungerford Castle, sometimes called Farleigh Castle or Farley Castle, is a medieval castle in Farleigh Hungerford, Somerset, England. The castle was built in two phases: the inner court was constructed between 1377 and 1383 by Sir Thomas Hungerford, who made his fortune as steward to John of Gaunt. The castle was built to a quadrangular design, already slightly old-fashioned, on the site of an existing manor house overlooking the River Frome. A deer park was attached to the castle, requiring the destruction of the nearby village. Sir Thomas's son, Sir Walter Hungerford, a knight and leading courtier to Henry V, became rich during the Hundred Years War with France and extended the castle with an additional, outer court, enclosing the parish church in the process. By Walter's death in 1449, the substantial castle was richly appointed, and its chapel decorated with murals.
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Robert Hungerford, 3rd Baron Hungerford was an English nobleman. He supported the Lancastrian cause in the War of the Roses. In the late 1440s and early 1450s he was a member of successive parliaments. He was a prisoner of the French for much of the 1450s until his mother arranged a payment of a 7,966l ransom. In 1461, after defeat on the Towton battlefield on 29 March, he fled with Henry VI to Scotland. In 1461 he was attainted in Edward IV's first parliament, and executed in Newcastle soon after he was captured at the Battle of Hexham.
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The following is a timeline of the history of London, the capital of England and the United Kingdom.
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