Bread Street

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Ward of Bread Street
Paternoster Square.jpg
Paternoster Square is located
within Bread Street Ward.
Ward of Bread Street is located in Greater London
Ward of Bread Street
Ward of Bread Street
 Ward of Bread Street shown within Greater London
OS grid reference TQ319812
Sui generis City of London
Administrative area Greater London
Region London
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town LONDON
Postcode district EC4
Dialling code 020
Police City of London
Fire London
Ambulance London
EU Parliament London
UK Parliament Cities of London and Westminster
London Assembly City and East
List of places

Coordinates: 51°30′52″N 0°05′48″W / 51.5144°N 0.0966°W / 51.5144; -0.0966

Bread Street is one of the 25 wards of the City of London that takes its name from its principal street, which was anciently the bread market; for by the records it appears as that in 1302:[1] the bakers of London were ordered to sell no bread at their houses but in the open market at Bread Street.[2] The road itself is just under 500 ft (153 m) in length and now forms the eastern boundary of the ward after the 2003 boundary changes.

The modern ward extends much further west from Bread Street itself and includes Paternoster Square, a modern development to the north of St Paul's Cathedral and home of the London Stock Exchange since 2004.[3] The City's only major shopping centre, One New Change, is located within the ward; the complex was opened in 2010.


As with most of the City's 25 wards, the boundaries of Bread Street were altered quite considerably in 2003, having remained almost unchanged for centuries. The ward is now bounded on the north by the Cheap ward; on the east by Cordwainer; on the south by Queenhithe and Vintry; and on the west by Castle Baynard and Farringdon Within.[2] Its street boundaries are Bread Street in the east; Newgate Street and Cheapside in the north; Warwick Lane and Ave Maria Lane in the west; and Queen Victoria Street to the south.

St Paul's Cathedral is outside the ward boundaries, being in Castle Baynard, but St Paul's Cathedral School, situated between the cathedral and New Change, is within the Ward.

Guilds and churches[edit]

Five successive halls of the Worshipful Company of Cordwainers (workers in fine leather) stood in the ward. They are commemorated by a blue plaque in the gardens of St Paul's facing Cannon Street. The fifth and last hall was built in 1909-10 but, on the night of 10 May 1941, was gutted during the Blitz.[4]

There were once two churches in the ward, All Hallows Bread Street and St Mildred, Bread Street, both to the design of Christopher Wren. Today their former parishes comprise part of St Mary-le-Bow on Cheapside. All Hallows was demolished in 1876 to make way for warehouses, and St Mildred was destroyed during the Blitz in April and May 1941.[5]


Bread Street is one of 25 wards in the City of London, each electing one Alderman and a number of Common Councilmen (the City equivalent of a Councillor) to the Court of Common Council of the City of London Corporation. Only Freemen of the City of London are eligible to stand for office as Aldermen; to stand as a Common Councilman, a candidate must be a Freeman and also an elector, a resident, or an owner of freehold or leasehold land within the City.

As of July 2014, the elected members for Bread Street include Alderman William Russell, Deputy Giles Shilson and Common Councilman Oliver Lodge.[6]

John Milton's blue plaque.

Notable residents[edit]

Admiral Arthur Phillip was Commander of the First Fleet and first Governor of New South Wales; baptised at All Hallows' Bread Street in 1738, he entered the Royal Navy in 1755 and died on 31 August 1814 and is remembered on Australia Day. A bust of Phillip can be seen in the church gardens at Watling Street.

Lord Mayor of London John Ansley was elected Alderman of Bread Street in 1800.[7]

Bread Street is the birthplace of the poets John Donne and John Milton, both of whom are commemorated in the ward.


External links[edit]