Trinity Green Almshouses

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Almshouses at Trinity Green.

Trinity Green Almshouses (formerly Trinity Hospital) are a series of Grade I listed almshouses on Mile End Road in London. They were originally built in 1695 to provide housing for retired sailors, and are the oldest almshouses in Central London.[1] The buildings were damaged during the Second World War, and were restored in the 1950s by London County Council.


The Trinity Green Almshouses were built in 1695 by the Corporation of Trinity House to provide housing for "28 decay’d Masters & Commanders of Ships or ye Widows of such";[2] the land was given to the Corporation by Captain Henry Mudd of Ratcliffe. The almshouses are believed to have been designed by Sir William Ogbourne,[3][4][a] and the houses were organised into two rows, with a central green and chapel.[3][7][8] The chapel is in the parish of St Dunstan's, Stepney.[9]

In 1735, Trinity Green had 28 people, at a cost of 12 shillings per resident per month.[10] In 1895–96, Trinity Green was threatened with closure, after Sir Frederic Leighton proposed that the almshouses be destroyed. The closure was prevented due to a public campaign[3][6][11] led by Charles Robert Ashbee, who set up a Committee for the Survey of the Memorials of Greater London.[12] The almshouses were the first buildings to be put on his preservation register, which eventually became the listed building system.[13]

In 1927, a bronze bust memorial for William Booth was installed at Trinity Green; in the 19th century, Booth had preached in the Vine Tavern in front of the almshouses, which had led to the founding of The Salvation Army.[14][13] In the Second World War, the Trinity Green almshouses were damaged, with those almshouses north of the chapel being destroyed.[3][15] In 1950, Trinity Green became a Grade I listed building; the listing included the almshouses, chapel, gates, railings and walls.[16] In 1954, London County Council bought and restored the non-destroyed houses, including the restoration of the chapel with 18th-century panelling from Bradmore House in Hammersmith.[15][3] When Mile End Road was built, Trinity Green's location was altered from rural peace and quiet into traffic.[5]

Trinity Green was included on a Mile End mural created in 2011.[17] In 2016, local residents complained at proposals for Sainsbury's to build a 28-storey tower block less than 80 yards (73 m) from the Trinity Green almshouses; they argued that the tower block would cast a shadow over the almshouses.[18][19]


  1. ^ Some sources say that the architect was Sir Christopher Wren.[5][6]


  1. ^ Prynn, Jonathan; Bourke, Joanna (4 February 2016). "Row over Sainsbury's scheme for tower near Whitechapel almshouses". London Evening Standard. Retrieved 12 May 2016. 
  2. ^ Jones, Richard (2004). Walking Dickensian London. New Holland Publishers. p. 172. ISBN 978-1-84330-483-8. 
  3. ^ a b c d e "Trinity Green". London Gardens Online. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  4. ^ "Return To Trinity Green". Spitalfields Life. 13 November 2015. Retrieved 10 May 2016. 
  5. ^ a b Davies, Andrew John (24 October 1995). "site unseen : Trinity Almshouses, Greenwich, London". The Independent. Retrieved 9 May 2016. 
  6. ^ a b "The Trinity Almshouses". Lloyd's Weekly Newspaper. 1 December 1895. p. 6. Retrieved 9 May 2016 – via British Newspaper Archive. (Subscription required (help)). 
  7. ^ Dragicevich, Peter; Fallon, Steve; Filou, Emilie; Harper, Damian (January 2016). Lonely Planet London. Lonely Planet. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  8. ^ "Bethnal Green: Dog Row". British History Online. 1998. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  9. ^ Hodson, J.S. (1839). The Ecclesiastical Legal Guide to Archbishops, Bishops and Their Secretaries, the Clergy ... &c. With Forms of the Different Instruments, and Particulars of the Ceremonies ... and Cases and Opinions from Eminent Counsel ... Carefully Selected and Arranged by a Barrister, Etc,. 1. p. 203. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  10. ^ Stow, John; Mottlet, John (1735). A survey of the cities of London and Westminster, borough of Southwark, and parts adjacent. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  11. ^ "The Trinity Almshouses". The Morning Post. 28 November 1895. p. 2. Retrieved 9 May 2016. 
  12. ^ Delafons, John (2005), Politics and Preservation: A Policy History of the Built Heritage 1882–1996, Routledge, p. 30, ISBN 9781135813079 
  13. ^ a b Glinert, Ed (May 2012), "Trinity Almshouses", The London Compendium, Penguin Publishing, retrieved 12 May 2016 
  14. ^ "A Walk Down The Mile End Rd". Spitalfields Life. 26 May 2014. Retrieved 12 May 2016. 
  15. ^ a b Hibbert, Christopher; Weinreb, Ben; Keay, Julia; Keay, John (March 2010). The London Encyclopaedia. Macmillan Publishers. p. 945-946. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  16. ^ "Trinity Green (Almshouses and Chapel) including Gates, Railings, Wall and Piers". Historic England. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  17. ^ "Mural: Mile End Mural". London Remembers. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  18. ^ Brooke, Mike (10 February 2016). "Tower Block 'shadow' threat to 1696 Trinity Green Almshouses at Mile End Gate". Docklands and East London Advertiser. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 
  19. ^ Hurrell, Alex (18 February 2016). "Opposition grows to Sainsbury's Whitechapel "skyscraper"". East London Lines. Retrieved 8 May 2016. 

Coordinates: 51°31′15″N 0°03′17″W / 51.5208°N 0.0548°W / 51.5208; -0.0548