London’s Alleys and Passages - Archive Articles

London’s Alleys: Austin Friars Passage, EC2
London’s Alleys: Austin Friars Passage, EC2

This delightfully narrow alley with a Victorian tiled and arched entrance and a rare surviving ancient wall can be found in a quiet cluster of streets just moments from busy London Wall.

London’s Alleys: Clerks Place, EC3
London’s Alleys: Clerks Place, EC3

This could be considered one of London’s newest, and widest alleys, as there’s never been an alley on this location, but in fact, there was a small alley of the same name nearby, underneath the very new large office block that destroyed it.,

London’s Alleys: Duke’s Mews, W1
London’s Alleys: Duke’s Mews, W1

This is a classic mews style alley that can be found just to the north of Oxford Street. The mews sits within an area of London known as the Portman Estate, which started being developed as housing soon after Henry

London’s Alleys: Bloomfield Place, W1
London’s Alleys: Bloomfield Place, W1

A short clean alley that’s notable for the being the site of one of London’s earliest electricity supplies, for the Grosvenor Gallery, and the substation site is still in use today.

London’s Alleys: Corbet Court, EC3
London’s Alleys: Corbet Court, EC3

This alley has changed a fair bit over the centuries, but the heart of it, a courtyard has been there ever since it was created. It’s also lead a fairly uneventful life, busy, but never notorious.

London’s Alleys: Cleveland Place, SW1
London’s Alleys: Cleveland Place, SW1

This alley in posh St James, originally known as Cleveland Yard was probably laid out as soon as the area started being developed, in the 1670s

London’s Alleys: Seaforth Place, SW1
London’s Alleys: Seaforth Place, SW1

This is a narrow passage now surrounded by offices and hotels that follows an ancient path through fields when all around here was more grass than glass.

London’s Alleys: Greystoke Place, EC4
London’s Alleys: Greystoke Place, EC4

This is a convenient passage that links Fetter Lane and Chancery Lane in the city, and is likely to date from the early urban development of the area.

London’s Alleys: Laurence Pountney Hill, EC4
London’s Alleys: Laurence Pountney Hill, EC4

This is a side alley that includes an old church, a Roman palace, and enough stucco carving to fill a small mansion house.

London’s Alleys: Stationers Hall Court, EC4
London’s Alleys: Stationers Hall Court, EC4

This is a narrow alley off Ludgate Hill that dates back to the Great Fire of London, and leads to one of London’s livery halls.

London’s Alleys: Brydges Place, WC2
London’s Alleys: Brydges Place, WC2

This is the alley near Trafalgar Square that isn’t the narrowest in London, although it is often claimed to be. It’s also less famous for Queens, of both sorts.

London’s Alleys: Bedford Court, WC2
London’s Alleys: Bedford Court, WC2

This is an alley that leads off from busy Covent Garden through to a much quieter patch of residential housing.

London’s Alleys: Shoulder of Mutton Alley, E14
London’s Alleys: Shoulder of Mutton Alley, E14

This is a Limehouse street which crops up regularly on lists of odd street names in London, but it had a more interesting history than that.

London’s Alleys: Plough Court, EC3
London’s Alleys: Plough Court, EC3

This is today a wide-open alley covered at both ends leading off the banking heart of Lombard Street.

London’s Alleys: Ball Court, EC3
London’s Alleys: Ball Court, EC3

This is an exceptionally busy alley, thanks in part to being part of a cluster of narrow passages, but also because one of its occupants is the legendary Simpsons Tavern.

London’s Alleys: Lime Street Passage, EC3
London’s Alleys: Lime Street Passage, EC3

This alley looks as if it’s part of the next door Leadenhall Market, with the same style buildings, but no roof over head.

London’s Alleys: Rupert Court, W1
London’s Alleys: Rupert Court, W1

This is a narrow alley in Soho with a famous pub at one end, and — if you know the significance — a famous pizza outlet at the other.

London’s Alleys: Poppin’s Court, EC4
London’s Alleys: Poppin’s Court, EC4

This is an ancient lane that used to be much longer but was cut in half thanks to the rebuilding of Farringdon Street next door.

London’s Alleys: Lazenby Court, WC2
London’s Alleys: Lazenby Court, WC2

This is the alley that’s famous for squeezing in a narrow gap underneath an old pub in Covent Garden, and bare-knuckle fights.

London’s Alleys: Conduit Court, WC2
London’s Alleys: Conduit Court, WC2

This is the most popular of all the alleys to be found in Covent Garden, thanks to recent addition – an “infinity chamber” of mirrors that lines half the passage.

London’s Alleys: Braidwood Passage, EC1
London’s Alleys: Braidwood Passage, EC1

This is a narrow dark modern-looking alley that provides the only gap in a wall that gives access to the warren of streets behind a long row of unremitting office blocks.

London’s Alleys: East Passage, EC1
London’s Alleys: East Passage, EC1

This alley is a result of the dissolution of the Monasteries, as it sits within the lands owned by St Bartholomew’s Priory.

London’s Alleys: Royal Exchange Avenue, EC2
London’s Alleys: Royal Exchange Avenue, EC2

Although today it’s largely a wide open alley, it was once a classic of the area, narrow and winding between rows of narrow Victorian buildings.

London’s Alleys: Half Moon Court, EC1
London’s Alleys: Half Moon Court, EC1

When the area in this part of London was occupied by St Bartholomew’s priory, there was a large garden on the south of their estate, and this alley pretty much follows the line of that long lost garden boundary.