This is an alley close to Liverpool Street station, and can be found next to St Botolph’s without Bishopsgate church, and while dating to roughly when the church was built, its notable history only starts in the 17th century.

Alderman’s Walk runs to the north side of the church, and ended in a large courtyard, originally known as Dashwood’s Walk, after the large house owned next to the site by Francis Dashwood, father of the more famous Sir Francis Dashwood. However, by the 19th century, the courtyard had gone, leaving just a fairly short alley that stopped just past the back of the church – and it had been renamed as Alderman’s Walk.

OS map 1896

The courtyard was filled in with a large Victorian office block, also known as Dashwood House, and the alley stopped there, by a back door. It was also not pedestrianised at the time, so less a walk, than a road for delivery vans.

It remained like that right up to the 1970s, when a new office block was erected on the site. That opened up the space again, with a new smaller courtyard where the old large one had been, and for the first time, the walkway was extended all the way to Old Broad Street.

The recent refurbishment of the 1970s Dashwood House also saw a lingering chunk of the old pedway removed — it was added for the old building as part of a failed scheme by the City of London to link buildings by elevated walkways.

The alley today then runs right through the block, with a small side passage heading south to the churchyard.

That side alley has a row of very nice offset seating and planting that was added during the refurbishment of the office block. If you’re wondering about the wood slat clad building at the end blowing out warm air — it’s an electricity substation.

Although a small passageway to the north looks like its also part of the alley, it’s actually a lingering remnant of another unrelated alley, Hart Court, which was associated with a large coaching in on the site.

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3 comments
  1. Herschel Hardin says:

    Hello. I’m a writer and historian in West Vancouver, British Columbia, and am trying to track down something quite specific: a physical description, and or link to a photo, of Dashwood House, circa 1902. I’m interested because it was the location of the headquarters of the Grand Trunk Railway, a Canadian Railway operating out of Montreal, but with head office and shareholders in London.

    Thanks for any help you can manage.

    • Ann Scanlan says:

      Hi. I was a child who lived in Dashwood House with my family as my father was the housekeeper. We remained until it was demolished. I remember playing in the long rambling corridors and its spooky basement. It was a great shame it’s gone as the house was full of character.
      At the end of Alderman’s Walk my father parked his car when the building was closed and was protected by high black gates. Dashwood House had 4 entrances. I do recall alot about the house that I can talk about if anyone is interested. However sadly I have no photos.

  2. Mark Jackson says:

    I worked in Alderman’s House in the early 80s which is marked on the 1896 map. It had a “cage” passenger lift – If the two doors were not both closed properly, by the user, the lift would be stuck at that particular floor.

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